I drive an average of 25,000 km per year and I own a Mahindra Scorpio and Tata Nano. Now I am also looking for a 1,200 to 1,600cc diesel powered car. I have been thinking of buying the Hyundai Verna or perhaps the Skoda Rapid, but having owned a Fabia in the past and, after facing the after-sales service, I am not keen on buying that brand again. I am also looking at the Maruti Suzuki Swift Dzire, Ford Fiesta and Nissan Sunny. Please help.
Amyn Gowani, via email
You can go for the Verna CRDi — it has a powerful engine that is fuel efficient as well. And it is well loaded with features too. The Rapid is a terrific car but if you are not happy with Skoda’s service then you need not opt for it. The Dzire is value for money and efficient too — it makes sense if you have a tight budget. The Fiesta is a great driver’s car. Our recommendation, however, is the Verna.
I have a budget of Rs 7 lakh, within which I am planning to buy a petrol hatchback with good safety features and decent value for money. I am not sure if I will get a diesel hatchback with good safety features for the same amount. Could you recommend a good car for me to buy?
Sajith, via email
You need a diesel hatchback if you intend to drive more than 1,000 km a month and plan to hold onto your car for at least four years. If not, then the best petrol hatchback would be the Maruti Suzuki Swift ZXi, which comes with ABS and two airbags as standard. In case a diesel is what you intend to buy, then either the Ford Figo Titanium or the Swift ZDi should suffice.
Hatch a plan
My sister is looking for a 1.2-litre hatchback with electronic power steering. She has a budget of Rs 5 lakh. However, if there is a stylish 1-litre hatchback available for below Rs 4 lakh, she is willing to consider it. What would you recommend?
Pravin, via email
Your best bet is either the Honda Brio or the Hyundai i10. Both have very good manoeuvrability, good driving positions, light controls and also have good power on offer. Go with either and we feel your sister will be pleased.
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