Buying Car in India

Buying a new car itself is exciting. It would be more exciting if you do proper research and comparisons.
Here are some points you should consider, apart from the usual factors.

Thigh support plays an important role in comfort. To test this, sit in 2nd row of car in upright position with your back touching the seat.
In this position see how much portion of your thigh is hanging over the edge of the seat. In other words your knees should come as close to the edge of seat, as possible.
Ideal position will be no portion of your thigh remains overhanging or kness touch the edge of the seat from inside.
This dramatically improves the comfort in long journeys.
Also ensure all seats have proper legroom i.e. the person in seat should be able to completely stretch his legs. This again is important in long journeys.

Most people in India think about airbags when it comes to safety. However the most important protection you’ll have in case of accident is, seat belt. Every car now comes with seat-belts, but the thing to look for is 3 point seat-belts. Normally upper joint of the seat-belt is fixed. In 3 point system, the upper joint can be moved vertically in 3 different positions, in order to adjust people of different heights.
Another thing is the distance between front most bumper of the car and the driver seat. In case of medium intensity head-on collision, the impact is reduced to some extent till it reaches the driver. So if this distance is larger, chances of injury to the driver are reduced.
Look for ABS & EBD features in car. ABS comes into picture when applying sudden brakes. It prevents skidding of vehicle by applying and releasing the brakes multiple times within fraction of second. EBD works in conjunction with ABS to provide optimal braking force and driving stability.
Another feature to look for is ESC(Electronic Stability Control). It basically detects and reduces loss of control. However this is not yet common in Indian vehicles.

Go for company branded alloy wheels whenever possible. They are indeed costly than usual steel wheels, but are much more sturdy. With usual disc wheels, you often have to do wheel
alignment which are not really cheap. With alloy wheels, you’ll rarely need to do wheel alignment. Other than that, most people find alloy wheels much more attractive. Especially in India where roads many times have have potholes, it makes a better choice.

An established model improved over the years through constant feature upgrades, is definitely more safe choice than to adapt a completely new model. Reason being, flaws in older editions are identified and ironed out by engineers. In completely newer models however, engineers are not fully aware of all the flaws since it’s on road for a really short time and you might end up being Ginnie pig for them. It’s like taking a bet, you can still take chances based on reputation of the company.

With recent LBT rule, old octroi system is abolished. LBT varies from place to place. In metro cities it’s much higher e.g. 3.5%, whereas in villages it’s marginal e.g. 0.3%
So if you happen to live in rural area or have some sort of address proof of that area, you could save close to 3% on Ex Showroom price. You’ll have to do RTO registration in that area to get this benefit. If you have moved to city, but your parents are still in rural area, you might consider buying car in their name to save this amount.
If you are buying a luxury car or SUV, you’ll see big savings. e.g. for cars above 10L the difference in LBT is as much as 50,000.

Maintenance Contract
Look whether company offers Annual Maintenance Contracts or sometimes called AMC. These contracts charge one time fee, for a specific period of time or kilometers. Once you pay one time fee, all the servicing of the vehicle are completely and unconditionally free, for those many years or kilometers. Check with them, that it also covers oil change charges. In most cases these AMCs will save you money just on oil change costs.

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