Tips for buying a used Maruti Swift in India

Maruti Swift is a rage in India. The “you are the fuel” tag line seems so apt for this car. Maruti showrooms have been abuzz for enquiries on the Swift since the time it set foot on Indian soil in 2005. Since a new one is just around the corner, this might be just the right time to buy a used Maruti Swift. Earlier on,  that is 2-3 years back, it was very difficult to find a Swift in the used car market however as of now, second hand Maruti Swift cars are dime a dozen. Now, the used car market is something which is to be found in every nook and cranny of most cities. However the ones making the most noise are the reputed used car dealer show rooms in India. Coming back to the Maruti Swift, it has been around since the last 5 years and now, finding good used car examples isn’t a task. With the response that we are getting for the 2011 Maruti Swift test drive article, it is but natural that India still loves the Swift and many would readily put their money on a used one. However there are a few things that need to be looked into before putting your money on one.

A used Maruti Swift in India has a paint coat which doesn’t fade so easily, so a well maintained example wouldn’t be hard to find. Check out first if the head lamps or tail lamps section has been damaged. If they are and are not replaced with genuine Maruti parts, then they tend to become hazy, thus hampering vision at the night. Moreover, if they haven’t been replaced, then replacing them is very expensive. The tyres need a replacement post the 30k mark. Check if they have been replaced or not. Most of the drivers usually ignore tyre replacements. Only the top end ZXI model gets body colored mirrors while the others make do with black colored mirrors. On the diesel model, the top end VDI model has body colored mirrors. Check if any of the glasses have any cracks and if they do have, get them replaced by the dealer himself. Additionally ensure that you see a Maruti monogram on the glass that you get fitted otherwise, it is not a genuine piece. Now move on to the interiors. Maruti Swifts are known to develop a rattling sound from their panels. Do check if this has been treated to. The door hinges as also the trims need special checking into. The interiors are of the hard wearing types and the trim also would stand the test of time. Nothing exciting about it then. There was a Swift Glam edition which was introduced earlier on and this meant beige interiors but the Indian public rejected it quickly forcing Maruti to withdraw this variant. On the central console, do check for an Electronic Power Steering warning light flashing up. It means that the steering pump has failed and the car would require more effort to turn. It is an expensive repair and would cost approximately Rs 8,700 for a replacement. It is usually caused by loose wiring coupler. This was prevalent in the earlier cars and hence avoid the earlier models which have been detected with this problem. The quality of plastics used may not be good however at that time, they were a leap ahead of the plastics used in Maruti cars. The Swift has got a fantastic seating position for the front driver and passenger however the rear with the small windows would seem claustrophobic or even cramped for many, especially taller passengers. The boot space is also on the lower side of things. However the boot also gets a rattling sound which might get quite annoying. If you are the types who depend on mechanics for everything, then it would be a wise idea to throw away the extras in the boot or keep them at home.

Overlooking any faults in a car and just because it is a Maruti doesn’t mean good thinking. The power windows switches were deemed as faulty in a couple of cars. This reason was attributed to moisture creeping into the switches. However replacing them is a Rs 3k affair including all 4 windows. Moreover, since it is summer, it is the ideal time to check for the climate control system in the Swift ZXI. Replacing it or getting it serviced can prove to be expensive.

As far as the ride and handling goes, the Swift is one of the best handling cars in the business that is. However those with high mileage will likely to have their suspension struts replaced. Do check out if this work has been done already. If not, then you are looking at an approximately Rs 5k job. Clunking sound was noted from the suspension when it goes across a pothole. But this is normal and is to be expected. Suspension bushes need to be replaced every 30k kilometers. Ride quality is a bit stiff but that is a trade off for the excellent handling at stake.

As far as the engine goes for a used Maruti Swift, you would find three different engines. One 1.3 liter engine from the G series family, which was also a part of the discontinued Esteem car. This aluminium engine used to produce 87 Bhp of power and was a gem. However increasing emission norms mean that the Esteem’s engine died an early death and in came the K series engine. While the capacity of the new engine has been downsized to 1.2 liters, it still manages the 85 Bhp which the earlier engine used to approximately make. This engine is generally a trouble free unit as are all the engines from the Maruti family. It is also a peppy unit which ensures that the Swift is actually the swiftest off the block. Giving into public demand, Maruti brought in the diesel variant of the Swift with the 1.3 liter multijet engine. This unit however was in the news because of some faulty connecting rod part in the engine. Maruti have recalled those Swifts and have fixed this issue. Check out if the Swift you are getting is from that batch and if the repair work has been carried out on it or not. Cutch plates need looking into for the petrol as early as 50 k kilometers and for the diesel after the 60k mark. Gear shifting is a sweet affair on the trio of engines. The clutch action is also on the lighter side for all the engines. The engine oil will cost around Rs 673 while the oil filter will cost Rs 79. Periodic servicing needs to be done in a year or 10 kms whichever is earlier. The air filter needs to be replaced after every 40k kilometers. Approximately Rs 2k for every service means that maintaining a second hand Maruti Swift would be easy on the pocket. Couple that with a mileage figure of 11.5 kmpl for the petrol and 16.2 kmpl for the city and highway figures on the petrol variants means that running costs would also be less. The diesel in the meanwhile is a stellar performer with it returning 14.3 kmpl in city and a high 21.2 kmpl on the highway. Buy the diesel only if you log in more miles in a month. The air filter in a used Maruti Swift needs to be changed after every 40k kilometers. It will cost only Rs 190.

Now, the prices of a used Maruti Swift in India. The Swift retains it market value much like the other Marutis. A used Maruti Swift price for the 2005 batch car is Rs 2.30 lakhs. However this car would have the 1.3 liter G series engine. For the more modern K series engine, one would have to pay Rs 3.10 lakhs for the 2008 batch car and this too for the base variant LXI. The Maruti Swift is available in 4 variants in petrol and those are LXI, VXI, VXI with ABS and also ZXI. The diesel variant is available in 3 variants namely LDI, VDI and VDI with ABS. The diesel variant is priced at a premium than the petrol and hence prices are on the higher side. A used Maruti Swift diesel variant from the 2009 batch is available for Rs 4.22 lakhs. Some good examples have been sighted at the branded showrooms like for instance Mahindra First Choice is offering a 2007 petrol Swift which has clocked approximately 34k kms with a one year engine and transmission warranty at a price of Rs 3.4 lakhs. Then there is another top end variant of the Swift petrol which is from the first batch and has raked in 30k kms. This specimen is being priced at a higher Rs 3.20 lakhs. Buying into the Maruti family means peace of mind and reliability apart from the fact that spares are way cheaper than what the others in this class command. However expect lower prices on the used Maruti Swift once the new one comes in. A difference of about 20-30k is expected by the second hand car market trade pundits.

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