January 27, 2013

Silk at 158

Its been more than 10 days that its been away from me, and the most recurrent memory I have of it is the silky smooth handling at 158. Yes, 158kmph is the top speed of the soon-to-be-released Tata Indica Vista D90. And it felt smooth as silk at that speed.



I did a constant 150kmph for over 10 minutes and there were hardly any speed variations. The inbuilt computer does a fantastic job of guaging the terrain changes and applies adequate power to overcome those to help maintain a near constant speed. The accelerator was also extremely comfortable and responsive. So, here is a short burst about the car:

External Features:

It maintains the same trim of the Indica Vista which derived from the Indica V2. The premium black top is the only additional feature. I'm not sure if its the best colour to put on a car top in a hot country like ours. But it does add some zing to the appearance of the car. The triple barrel headlight also has its design sourced straight from the earlier version, which is not a bad thing after all. A bit of chrome here and there adds to the cool look of the car.

Internal Features:

First thing that strikes you before entering is the rehashed colour scheme giving a slightly upmarket look. But the moment I felt the same, the feeling vanished. It was not the best quality plastic used and on closer look, did give me a cheaper feel. My Santro which sells at half the rate of this car has a better quality plastic.

The seats were very well designed and placed and the backlit dashboard was good. The cool feature was the Driver Information system with time, temperature, speed, fuel left in tank, mileage readings. These were not accurate, but gave a decent estimate.

The A/C was quite powerful and cooled the car quite efficiently. The stereo system was a double din system equipped with full bluetooth, USB and Aux inputs. I could connect my mobile to the system using the bluetooth. I also could do the same using the Aux cable that I had. A charger input was also present in the console.

There was some thought given to driver and passenger comfort and two cup holders were present. The fully automatic power windows were controllable from the individual doors as well as the master control at the drivers'. The driver's door console also had remote adjustment for side view mirrors which was a great feature.

There was adequate leg room for both the front and back seats. Another cool feature was that the foldable back seats were in 40-60 config which allowed one to fold a part of the seat only. Many manufacturers put in a 50-50 config which allows seating for only one person. In this 40-60 config, two people could comfortably sit when the shorter part was folded. The boot was quite spacious too.

Driving:

Driving the VistaD90 was superfun. The seating height, controls and other parameters were very nice.

The start was not too noisy. Gear shifts were a bit harsh, but thats probably due to the new gearbox and should smoothen out with use. The car was a bit sluggish on the lower speed lower gear movements, and that might not earn it most points in heavy bumper-to-bumper traffic, but when given the go above 30-40kmph, even on city roads, it performed beautifully in the 3rd and 4th gears.

To test the car's handling and speed runs, I took it to the Nehru Outer Ring Road of Hyderabad and floored it. The 5th gear is a pleasure. Its extremely smooth to drive on and very responsive even at speeds of 140+. The company advertises its max speed as 158 and it did not go any faster than that. There was absolutely no vibration and the handling at that speed was awesome. The braking too was good and smooth and there were no jerks. I took it off road for a mile and the suspension was found a little wanting in that field, but hey, its not what the car is meant for.

Overall, the driver would have a good time on roads with sparse traffic, but would not be very happy in city traffic.

Ratings:

External Look: 7
Internal Feel: 7
Comfort: 8
Driver Comfort: 8
City Drive: 5
Long Drive: 8
Fuel efficiency: 7
Value for money: 6

This is a review as part of the Sponsored Reviews program of Blogadda.com

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