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Old 31st October 2009, 19:15   #1
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Smile Carnation, Sanathnagar, Hyderabad - Review

If I had read the review inputs by TBHP mate Setuniket just a few days before I would not have visited Carnation at all.
My MJD was due for service at 22500kms.There were no problems with it except some minor rattles in the door and a clutch play.I just wanted a normal service. Infact a Quick service so that I could utilize the rest of the day for my other minor errands.I knew TASS couldn’t do it unless booked in advance .
A casual call with my friend sprang up CARNATION – A Multi Brand Car service.He and his collegues had gone there with their WagonR, Santro, Scorpio and Accent. All of them MULTIBRAND and I immediately decided to give it a try for a normal service.But I was warned to go for ONLY General Service and no other technical issues.And they don’t do ‘Warranty’ Cars.Still I wanted to try it out.I also heard from them that the place had less cars coming in since it was new and I could expect early delivery.
Reached there at 10 AM sharp and mine was the first car to arrive for the day!!! A good start ,I thought. Next, walked in, met Mr. Prasad the SA and asked him about the MJD with Warranty. He then made a call to the Works Manager who hadn’t arrived yet , came up to me and said ‘YES SIR, but any issues Sir?’ I said ‘No, I need only general service with some clutch checkup’. He immediately began writing down the job card.I gradually came to know that all the mechanics had been sourced from different companies and Mr.Prasad was an Ex-Tata service guy.He was at ease with the MJD.I was relieved on the fact that my car wouldn’t end up training them instead!!
The ambience was good, neat and clean. An Indica and a Palio 1.9D were in the service bays with bonnets opened up.There were about 15 service bays,a lube room,Washing area,WA/WB bay,Canteen and Staff room.It was well sorted out. The guys were relaxed and going about their work without the urgency you find at TASS.Less cars,less tension.

They had tie up with only Castrol and the routine replacement spares would be brought from the respective car dealerships .My car would get its spares from Concorde motors.
After the initial entries in the job card,Prasad explained the work that would be done.
Castrol GTX diesel would be the oil used and the oil filter,air filter would be brought from TASS.Clutch check,door pad check and other routine checks would be done .
He promised me delivery in 4 hours!!.I decided to wait it out .
As time passed by other cars slowly began rolling in – Accent CRDI,Getz GVS,Maruti Omni,Scorpio DX,Innova G and Fiat Palio 1.6.

The Customer waiting lounge was small but good with some Auto mags like TopGear,Motoring India lying around.Time passed by as I flicked them through reading on Indigo Manza,M&M Customisation on Bolero,F1 news,Readers Queries etc.
They dint resist my occasional visits to the car during the work.In fact the mechanic explained the suspension setup when I asked him.
My car was ready by 2PM ,washed,wiped and vacuumed.
During the Test drive ,Prasad explained all the work done .Oil Change,Filters change,Brake pad scrub,Suspension bolt tightening,Fluid check and top up,Tyre check,All lights check etc. It was satisfactory.The car had that feel of being spruced up.
I need to assess the GTX Diesel on my engine since the last time TASS – Autofin Motors simply threw Castrol Magnatec into my engine.On asking they simply said it was Approved and suitable for Diesels too.!

The Final Bill was Rs.1972/ with Discount
General Service 480.00
Washing service 240.00
Castrol GTX Diesel oil,QTY: 3.6 litre = 686.16
Oil Filter 450.00
Air filter 270.00
Taxes 85.00
Discount 240.00
TOTAL 1972=00


An interesting part on the bill was that TAX was charged only on the OIL .
Oil and Air filters were filled in Manually and stamped on my copy.
Maybe they were avoiding tax on them!!!
Service charges seemed High for Rs.720/, TASS normally charge Rs.650/ including Wash.Dont know much about the spare prices though.I need to check them.
But I remember Oil filter in TASS for Rs.380 or so ,here it was Rs.450!!!

They could also have an inventory for the running spares instead of sending someone out every time to get them. I even heard of bulbs being not in stock! from the other customers during my visit.

The Final Verdict:
Would I visit again ?
YES but for Routine maintenance only. Particularly Quick Service.
Overall I would rate them 7/10 for service.

Thanks and Cheers.

Last edited by Alton : 31st October 2009 at 19:25. Reason: Copy paste error
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Old 31st October 2009, 20:03   #2
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Default Very helpful

Great review Alton. We now know that there is at least one reliable multibrand workshop in Hyderabad.
Do update with your friends' experiences too.

Regarding spares - it is standard practice to procure on demand. They cannot maintain spares for all the models available in India :-) Thats too much inventory and they will need a separate building just for the parts.
Usually they have very reliable wholesale suppliers and once this catches up, you might end up paying discounted rates for the parts too. The only flip side is that there is usually 1-2 days shipping delay for slightly rarer parts. We build the IT systems for a wholesaler in the US and came to know a bit about this.

There is a proposal on this site to start some kind of a rating/review system for workshops. Your review will be a big help.
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Old 17th December 2009, 22:39   #3
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Default Carnation-Fiat ink deal for servicing.

Carnation and Fiat tie-up for servicing premium cars Prices | Reviews | Features | Photos | BS Motoring

May be this will come as relief for those unhappy with FIAT ***. Fiat's playing it smart by being not only dependent on TATA.

Last edited by aah78 : 18th December 2009 at 05:12. Reason: Moved to existing thread.
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Old 18th December 2009, 13:36   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alton View Post
If I had read the review inputs by TBHP mate Setuniket just a few days before I would not have visited Carnation at all.
A review to his link is here (Carnation Sec-63, Noida: Service Review: Avoid this place!)

Quote:
But I was warned to go for ONLY General Service and no other technical issues.
Why? Any experiences to share?

Quote:
He then made a call to the Works Manager who hadn’t arrived yet
At 10 a.m.?

Quote:
Service charges seemed High for Rs.720/
Quote:
But I remember Oil filter in TASS for Rs.380 or so ,here it was Rs.450!!!
Quote:
They could also have an inventory for the running spares instead of sending someone out every time to get them.
Quote:
I even heard of bulbs being not in stock! from the other customers during my visit.
Quote:
Overall I would rate them 7/10 for service.
Carnation's competing with the authorised networks (in addition to the after-market). It's tough enough for car owners to move away from the "trust-worthy" authorised brand networks. A new brand + higher prices + no part inventory + above average experience isn't quite the way to go. They ought to be bending over backward! Carnation is going to have to do better than a 7 / 10 rating.

Full respect to Mr. Khattar, he is a genius. Yet, carnation's road ahead is uphill without doubt.

Thanks for sharing!
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Old 18th December 2009, 18:21   #5
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Good to read you experience Alton, my experience is limited to one specific center in Noida which doesn't necessarily mean every carnation center is poor in respect to service.

I would also like to know why only general service?
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Old 10th January 2010, 20:03   #6
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Good for Fiat owners on the tieup but sadly only for premium cars.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post



Why? Any experiences to share?
Quote:
Originally Posted by setuniket View Post

I would also like to know why only general service?
Thanks GTO for your assessment on new entrants in car servicing.
Right Setuniket,no 2 service stations give out the same level of service.

Now coming to 'General Servicing only' -
It was suggested to me by my friends who had earlier given their WagonR,Scorpio ,Innova,Getz ,Swift and a Fiat Palio 1.6 for service to Carnation before me.
Their overall observation was -
1.It does not do 'Warranty Cars'.Any technical work would Null the Car's Warranty.Also it does not have any Official tieup with any of the car companies which doesnt help the owner when faced with technical issues at Carnation.
Authorised dealers atleast have the obligation to rectify and inform the parent company.Carnation at present doesnt have to.
2.The mechanics are young around 25-28 years of age ,have around 3-5 years of experience and are able to do most of the general service jobs .
Since they have been sourced from various Authorised centres who take in 30-40 cars a day the majority of the guys would have been concentrating only on General service.

Queries on some technical issues like ECU mapping,valve timing,suspension replacement,Headlamp and tyre upgrade were answered quite evasively like 'We will look into it Sir'.or. 'We shall send in for our senior mechanic ,Sir'.

Thanks
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