Maruti says Swift owners facing braking issues are driving wrong!

A number of users of the new Maruti Swift have pointed out that the car has an issue with its brakes at very low speeds. As CarToq community members Toms Mathew, Sibiraj, Arun Vijayaraghavan, Mangalam Singhania and others had complained earlier, the brake pedal becomes hard, losing vacuum, when one drives in bumper-to-bumper traffic or at parking speeds and using half clutch with brakes. Read the original post: Braking problems in new Swift?

These users had shown their cars to Maruti service centers but nothing significant has been done to correct the issue. After the braking issue was escalated, covered in the media, and also in consumer forums, the company has finally come out with what is probably the first “acknowledgement” about the issue on its Facebook page, although it still does not say that this is a problem. Read more: Will Maruti recall Swift for braking issues?

The company says that users need to adopt the right style of driving to avoid this issue. It asks users to not drive with half clutch, where the engine rpm may drop below idle rpm and hence not generate enough vacuum for the brakes. However, the brakes are still fully functional claims the company, except that the effort increases.

Here is the full text of Maruti’s message to Swift users from its Facebook page:

“The Maruti Suzuki Swift’s braking technology is latest and the best being offered by any car manufacturer in India. The Swift also provides driver a fatigue free driving in stop go condition by proper launch assist. Plus to assist the car in braking, the Swift is equipped with brake boosters. If you have experienced hardness in the brake at very low speed of 5km/hr or less, that may be on account of driving in half clutch and pressing the brake to control speed, which results in engine RPM falling below ‘Idle RPM’ with brakes dragging the engine causing loss of vacuum to the brake.

However the brake is fully functional during such time as well, irrespective of hardness of pedal. For optimum braking results we advise you to apply the brakes first followed by pressing the clutch fully. We are confident this would help resolve your issue. We urge you to try this method and share your most valuable feedback with us.

We are sure that you would appreciate that the NVH refinement level of new Swift is so good that the engine does not judder even under such abnormally low RPM condition. Also in such conditions the engine does not stall in order to prevent driver fatigue. Worse case if you have habit of pressing the clutch half way and and your brakes harden, then press the clutch fully once and release it slowly, the brake will again be effective. However it is recommended not to drive car with half clutch pressed for better performance of the vehicle.”

Those of you who own the new Swift, do read this message from Maruti and share your feedback. What Maruti says is correct in a way, because ideally one should not be riding the clutch or using half clutch as it leads to increased clutch wear and low fuel efficiency and invites higher maintenance costs in the long run. CarToq experts too advise that riding the clutch or using half clutch is not the best driving style.

However, given our traffic conditions and the congested roads in may cities, many drivers rely on the clutch to control speed in bumper-to-bumper traffic and on slopes. While one should appreciate Maruti’s efforts in trying to reduce the occurrence of the problem, advising people on changing their driving style is definitely not the best option!

What is your opinion on Maruti’s response to the Swift’s braking issue? Tell us.