After having driven the Tata Vista Quadrajet 75 and D90 for a long time I got my hands on the Bolt twice. First was for a review and later the long termer. I wanted to get my hands on the Bolt for a while, and I didn’t lose out any time when I got this opportunity. I got my hands on a brand new Bolt (just 50kms on the clock) and what I really find are drastic improvements apart from quality in the Bolt over the Vista are the small-size steering wheel, softer stalks (both wiper and direction stalks) and the new centre console. The seats on the Bolt are a lot softer, making it comfortable for city driving. The other important aspect of the Bolt is the ease of driving it in city. With the smaller steering wheel, lighter weight of the wheel and clutch pedal zipping in traffic is very easy.
Report I – by Rachit Hirani
Distance: 1000 kms
Mileage: 16.5km/l (City driving)
Fuel Type: Diesel
Tata Bolt Problems
However, some things which I see need some improvement are feel of the power window switches and shorter gear lever. These are very minor changes but one strong USP of the Bolt is the music system. The Harman system has great output and a joy for music lovers. But then there is a certain amount of lag in the system when you skip a track and this is very much evident. If I have to get a hatchback, the Bolt diesel will be my choice without fail.
Tata Bolt Strong Points
I drove the Bolt mostly in city and I have been impressed in the manner it has been performing, especially the fuel-efficiency. Some of the aspects were missing on the Vista and this has been fulfilled in the Bolt. The ride quality of the Bolt is far superior than most of the competition and so its road holding ability. The steering wheel does feel a bit disconnected around the corner but this is at par with other Japanese hatchbacks. For city, this is one hatchback I will recommend.
Report II – by Narendra Sharma
Distance: 1200 kms
Mileage: 18.5km/l (Mix of city and highway)
Fuel Type: Diesel
The Bolt has a 1.3-litre diesel engine that produces 75bhp of power and about 190Nm of maximum torque. This is a Fiat MultiJet engine and it has been tuned perfectly for city and highway driving. There is sufficient torque on most of the occasions be it in the city limits or on the highway. After driving on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, following are the learnings:
Tata Bolt Pros
- Sufficient power in the city and the highway. This makes it easy to overtake and cruising is a breeze.
- The soft seats feel a bit uncomfortable for long journeys
- The fuel efficiency of the Bolt is worth a mention, as it the diesel is very efficient
- There is minimal body roll in the body and one of the best combinations of ride and handling a hatchback can offer.
- As the display for the AC is on the screen, one can’t see the adjustment made in the temperature, if a call is going on through the bluetooth.
There isn’t any that is majorly wrong in the Bolt, except the fact that there aren’t many bottle holders. The car has a lot of space for the company to actually add these extra bottle holders, and now there is no draw underneath the co-driver’s seat, which was seen on the Indica Vista. These are minor issues and these can be fixed easily and be missed out also. The quality of the plastics and the insulation of the cabin is worth a mention. Despite the 175/65 R15, it had sufficient grip and the suspension does a good job in absorbing bumps. On the slightest twitch from the steering around a corner, the tyres begin to squeal and this is when the steering feels a bit disconnected. The idea is to give the same input or correction. The tyres will grip the tarmac and there isn’t any evident body roll to make you lose your confidence. The Bolt has excellent driving dynamics over majority of the cars.