MainiReva is certainly a great electric eco friendly car, which can sneak through heavy traffic, but is it really worth your money? Well, from past few weeks I had been busy researching an automatic car for my wife, and I’m quite habituated to seeking quotes online. Carwale and CarDekho have been my favorite sites, but this time I saw an absolutely wrong quote on Carwale.com, which indicated the pricing of Maini REVAi AC (the mid trim) as Rs. 4,10,500, the entry level Standard trim as 4,09,888 (it doesn’t even have AC so I never looked at it anyway!), and Reva Classe as 4,99,316 (top end trim!).
When I called up the Mahindra showroom this morning I discovered that the top end trim itself is about Rs 4.2lakhs on-road, and the mid trim is about Rs 3.55 lakhs on-road in Bangalore. And, this got me interested because at just 3.5lakhs, it looked like a worthy buy, and I started looking for user reviews online, and most of them had only these thing to say –
a. Poor after-sales service
b. Cramped space (well i don’t expect much from it!)
c. High maintenance cost (few users are cribbing about this, but I’m not sure that it’s the case with a new model!)
d. Very good as a second car
e. Great for congested roads, and fantastic option for ladies who prefer automatic transmission rather than shifting gears relentlessly.
So, we decided to take a test drive – now I never expected great pick up, or spacious, luxurious interiors anyway, and I knew exactly how it looked like, so I was quite prepared for what was coming my way!
maini reva picture
I discovered that the pick isn’t really bad, but the top speed is just about 65kmph practically, and it runs about 60-70kms in one charge (company claims it to be 80km but that’s not the practical figure!). Second thing was that you need to get a charging point at home, and since we reside in an apartment, I’ll have to seek permission to draw power line at my parking slot…
Running Cost and Battery Issues
Most important thing is that the battery doesn’t practically last for more than 2-2.5yrs if you use it like 50kms+ everyday, and the new battery costs about Rs 80k. This translates to about Rs40k/yr or Rs 3500/month. Now, when you think about petrol charges for a small car for traveling 50km/day, it’d not be more than Rs 200/day considering fuel mileage of about 17-20km/l. (I’m talking about small cars like Maruti Alto K10, Hyundai Eon, and Chevy Beat not fuel guzzlers like my Mitsubishi Cedia). And, if it’s a diesel Beat then it wouldn’t even cost you more than Rs 150/day! And, this would potentially mean fuel bills of about Rs 3.5-4k at the MOST!
Now, when you see Reva, you end up spending avg Rs4k towards maintenance (though you won’t be paying anything until you’ve to change the battery), and then the electricity bills, which won’t be less than Rs500/month. So, effectively it doesn’t really work out to be a very economic choice in the long run, especially if you want to drive 50-60kms/day, and keep it with yourself forever.
reva electric car
But, indeed it’s impossible to find an automatic car at this price, and that too something as small as Reva, which can take you through traffic jams like a breeze. Our first car, Chevy Spark cost us almost Rs 3.7lakhs on-road, and if Reva is going to be cheaper, then perhaps I may be tempted to buy it, and sell it before the battery change is needed, because most probably my wife won’t be using it @ 50kms/day for too long! It’d save her bus charges of almost Rs2k, and on the whole, it may not be that bad a deal for us, so I might gift it to her as our second anniversary gift 🙂
As mentioned earlier, the mid-end Reva AC trim costs about Rs3.55lakhs on-road in Bangalore, and with SBI funding the down payment is just about Rs70k (for 80% funding), and the EMI works out to Rs6.5 k for 5years, and about 5k/month for 7years term, and 85% loan funding.
Still we’re a little confused about it at the moment, and I’m going to take a test drive of Hyundai i10 automatic trim, and see all the other options. So, I’d conclude my review of Maini Reva saying that it’s a really good choice as an automatic car at this price, but if you’re thinking of using it heavily in long run, it’s definitely not a very economic option, and you must NEVER think of using it as your first car!