I am planning to buy a car for my monthly commute of 300 km within a budget of Rs 5 lakh. I would like the car to be low on maintenance costs, fuel efficient and good value for money. I will keep the car for the next ten years. Which of these should I opt for — the Maruti Suzuki A-star, Wagon R or the Zen Estilo?
Kailash Agrawalla, via email
If you’re going to keep the car with you for 10 years, it makes sense to buy one that is more contemporary. In that case the A-star is your best bet. The A-star may receive a facelift by early next year, so you may want to consider that. However, even the current car is a good option — it is an easy and compact car to drive and should serve you well.
I am looking to buy a sedan within a budget of Rs 6 lakh and would prefer going in for a diesel option. I have a daily commute of 40 km, plus weekend drives of 100 km. Could you guide me to the best option keeping in mind low maintenance costs and safety.
Sanjeev Tripathi, Pune
There is no doubt that the Maruti Suzuki Swift Dzire diesel is your best bet — you may have to increase your budget if you want the diesel version. The Dzire comes in a petrol automatic version as well. It is an excellent car across all aspects. However, if you are not able to stretch your budget, and if you are willing to settle for a diesel hatchback, then look at the Swift.
I am considering buying a car within a budget of Rs 5 lakh to Rs 8 lakh. So far I have zeroed in on the Volkswagen Polo (petrol Highline), Hyundai i20 and Skoda Fabia. I have a daily commute of 30 km with additional out of town travel too. Based on my gut feeling, some preliminary research and reviews from friends and relatives, I am leaning towards the Polo. Which car do I buy?
Vishwas Rao, Bengaluru
The Polo and the Fabia are virtually identical and share a lot of aggregates. Both are decent cars to drive, with the Fabia giving you a little extra room at the rear. The i20 is a proven car and comes loaded with features. If you have done your research and have zeroed in on the Polo as suiting your needs best, you can certainly go for it — you won't be disappointed. It is nice to look at and has quality bits going into it.
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