Virtual Mechanic

Car and bike questions? We have the answers

I’ve planned to buy my first car and have narrowed down to Santro Xing GLS Eco to suit my four-member family. My priority is Rs. 4 lakh on road, easy maintenance, performance with better mileage and comfort. I drive in the city for about 60 km per week and rarely go for weekend (highway) trips. Will Santro suit my requirements? Is the factory-fitted LPG kit trouble-free?

Jegan Nath

The Santro Xing GLS Eco is a car that balances performance, maintenance, mileage and comfort well. It will definitely suit your family’s transportation requirements. And yes, the factory fitted LPG kit is quite trouble-free.

I want to buy a new petrol-engined car within a Rs. 6.5-lakh budget. My driving will be mainly on hilly roads and around 15,000 km a year. I would like my car to be spacious, fuel efficient, low on maintenance costs and also have a decent boot. I have shortlisted two saloons — Logan Edge Connect and Ford Fiesta 1.6 Zxi Duratec, and two hatchbacks — Honda Jazz and Hyundai i20. Please advise.

Rajesh Sharma

For hilly roads, the Fiesta 1.6 will be the best because it has outstanding handling which will suit twisty roads and a 100bhp engine which will give you sufficient power to climb up the hills. It is spacious enough and has a decent boot.

I bought a Mahindra Xylo recently, which comes with a factory-fitted Nippon audio system with MP3, USB port and card reader. Can I add an amplifier, a sub-woofer and two more speakers? Also, where should the subwoofer be fitted in the car?

Ajayy K

You can certainly add an amplifier and subwoofer to your existing system by using the ‘pre-out’ jacks on your stock unit. If it doesn’t have these connections, Rockford Fosgate makes an external device known as the 360, which allows you to add amps and subwoofers to your system without too many installation problems. The subwoofer is best kept in the boot with a crossover frequency of 80hz or lower.

I am looking to upgrade from my eight-year-old non-AC Maruti 800 STD MPFI to a hatchback, which can transport my five-member family in comfort over weekends. Total usage will be 10,000-12,000km per year, most of it in the city. My budget is Rs 4 lakh. Also, I feel Ford and Chevrolet cars are not so economical and I cannot afford their running and maintenance costs. The two cars I am left with are the Hyundai Getz 1.1 GVS and Tata Indica Vista Safire Petrol. Given my requirements of good fuel economy, value for money, ride quality and usability with minimal fuss, breakdowns and maintenance costs, can you advise a buy?

Suraj Kumar

We suggest you opt for the Indica Vista petrol. It is more spacious than the Hyundai Getz and more refined as well. The Vista’s ride is better too and at its price, the Tata hatchback is outstanding value for money.