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Old 9th February 2010, 17:45   #1
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Default Buyers Beware- Malpractices of Various Car Manufacturers in Sales & Service.

Buyers Beware- Malpractices of Various Car Manufacturers in Sales & Service.


This post is created as a ready reference to all the users about the various Malpractices of Manufacturer’s sometimes with intentions & some time with out intentions.

Disclaimer: The post is not aimed to say that one manufacturer is good or bad.it aims to create emphasis on the Malpractices of the Manufacturers & is aimed to give an end user experience & knowledge about preception of Practices & Processes Followed by Manufacturers.
I think there would be many reasons why such practices are adopted, this post just want to collect the set of Malpractices of the Manufacturer. It is strictly an individual Opinion.

Some of My Inputs:

Automobile

Service

1.Especially with Maruti Service Stations- They Service Manager tell you that Car Needs Suspension Overhaul but if you are knowledgeable about suspension & you ask him to demonstrate that how can he deduct suspension overhaul-he is left with no answer & now when you inspect the status of Suspension Arm the arms function ok,Ball Joint functions ok,Only required change is Jumping Rod Bushes, Steering No Problem, Shocker ok if you inspect- but normally one believes service manager who has an internal target set of some amount set by company month by month, I have faced this myself around 3-4 times specially with Maruti Authorized Service Centre so may be a malpractices with or with out intention- so buyers beware.
2.Service Centre : for Cars which has hydraulic Clutch: like Fiat Cars, Mitsubishi etc: Service centre people top up the clutch release cylinder oil from 1000 litre can & mostly resulting in Dirty Oil(as Oil cans are not maintained well) which causes clutch to malfunction resulting in harder Clutch & may also result is bad clutch plate & may be money for Manufacturer. The best solution always top up your self with a new bottle of clutch release cylinder oil.
3.Some car Manufacture for the same part like Oil Filter charge 5 times more for the part which also used in other manufacture car in their car & charge 5 times less. Example is Oil Filter of Santro, Air Filter of Fiat car used by some other manufacture would not like to name the other manufacturer- but buyers beware.
4.Service Centre of Many Manufacturer buys the spare parts from local dealer so not sure whether the part used is geniun or not ?- so buyers Beware
5.Service Centre of Many Manufacturer doesn’t perform counter sales resulting customer is left with no option except to take the car to service centre & is again left with malpractices.
6.Many Manufacturers are charging huge cost of the spare part which are available in spare part market special example to this is Car Side Mirror – when the spare part dealer can give Car Side Mirror 5x lower than Manufacturer –the channel is same for both – as both the Spare part dealer & Manufacturer import the part – than how can spare part dealer give it for 5x lower? Same quality same manufacturer of Spare Part- I have one major example to it but I would not like to name the company – but again Buyer Beware.
7.Malpractices of Skoda India – We all know the case of Harish case.
8.Especially with Maruti what was witnessed by one of my friend- Maruti Authorized service Centre performing service work for TATA,GM.FORD, and OPEL CARS within their premises.
9. Especially for Car Balancing – Service centre Manager tell you that your car should go for BALANCING for all four tyres, but the fact is car is functioning absolutely fine – no jumps on any speed & but than also on all four tyres – the real fact is Balancing is only required for Front Two Tyres not Four,Four in only special cases.Service Centre by Default takes Four- so Buyers Beware.


Sales

1.Maruti: Discontinuation of 5 gears in Maruti 800.As you all are aware 5 speed Maruti 800 was one of the Best Thing that happened to 800 – Speed,Milege & AC everything was good in comparison with 4 speed but perhaps it was dis-continued as it was giving a threat may be to Alto.Also the discontinuation of ALTO 1.1 May be a threat to ZEN & WAGON R.
2.Maruti- Discontinuation of Old Zen & Bringing MR Wagon as called else where in the name of Zen, May be due to OLD ZEN molds life expired & looks were OLD but Brining MR WAGON did no good to maruti either.Some people might differ with this individual opinion.
3.Maruti Baleno – Spare Part issue the only scope is now Authorized Service Centre who gives the part at Huge cost as it is imported Resulting Customer to be in a mess & pay huge amount but why maruti India Cannot support it via Local vendor Development.

Applicable to all Manufacturer : Infact it is not a malpractices but trade – Always negotiate the new car prize with at least 4 dealer before buying car – it is sometimes happened that all four would offer different discount for the same model - so buyer beware.

I would request all Team Bhpian to kindly contribute in making Buyers Beware & a better society for Automobiles.


Thanks
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Old 9th February 2010, 18:42   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anupam00 View Post
the real fact is Balancing is only required for Front Two Tyres not Four,Four in only special cases.
I disagree. Please tell me why you believe balancing only 2 tyres is enough..
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Old 9th February 2010, 18:52   #3
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I guess he meant "alignment"
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Old 9th February 2010, 19:27   #4
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90 % cases Balancing of two tyre is enough as front two tyre wear & tear is maximum all front wheel drive car
but yes 10 % cases all tyre balancing is all tyre might be required.

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Old 9th February 2010, 19:42   #5
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I wouldn't call discontinuing a model as malpractice. I think its the demand (Lesser) that affects a Model and then leads to discontinuation (Exclude ZEN and Qualis). How many Alto VX do We see on the roads (A few thousands??)?? Alto was (is) a hit because of its Price (sub 3 lac). Alto Vx was priced more than regular models and inched close to Wagon R Territory. May be demand at that time was less. Why would Alto Vx be a threat to the sales of ZEN's or Wagon R 's??

Last edited by mnhegde : 9th February 2010 at 19:47.
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Old 9th February 2010, 19:45   #6
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Default hmm.....

As a maruti car owner which has 108,000 kms on odo and getting serviced from m.a.s.s. only, I can definitely vouch for "Service :1.Especially with Maruti Service Stations-... ".

I have found a nice way of getting around this issue, I get those specific service/repair done from m.a.s.s at different city just to escape the service advisor 's weekly/daily targets.

Its just that in big cities these guys have bigger targets to achieve and have a "methodical" way of fixing things which is replace everything. I agree in some repair its better thing to do , like with a clutch overhaul the flywheel is replaced if car has good kms on the odo, but not always.

The only way to understand what really needs repair is to get inputs from different mechanics at different service centres. I think we can no longer be dumb and give in to the servcie advisors, need to readup, and do some homework before visiting m.a.s.s.


On the contrary, at the m.a.s.s they have offered be a more affordable solution when I was adamant about budget.

Last edited by ownerofazkaban : 9th February 2010 at 19:50.
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Old 10th February 2010, 00:28   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anupam00 View Post
90 % cases Balancing of two tyre is enough as front two tyre wear & tear is maximum all front wheel drive car
but yes 10 % cases all tyre balancing is all tyre might be required.

Thanks
Boss... I really respect the intention of your thread... to make consumers aware, but kindly check the accuracy of the inforrmation you provide.

Balancing is required fo ALL wheels. That is FACT. Balancing is a process where the wheels are removed from the car and mounted on a balancing machine.

However, in 90% cases, alignment of only the front two wheels is adequate. During alignment, the car is put on an alignment machine and the suspension is adjusted.
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Old 10th February 2010, 01:12   #8
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This thread is ludicrous. More than a rant/diatribe rather than being instructive. I do respect the sentiment but a little thought and research should have been put into the content to inform us about potential malpractices that we should be aware of. Discontinuing a model is not malpractice but progress, IMO.
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Old 10th February 2010, 01:27   #9
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He is probabaly referring to Alignment for FWD cars that have axle-spring combination for the rear, that only goes up-down. The rear is not independent suspension for many of these cars like , Swift, i20, City etc,

But cars like Accord and many other bigger sedans have trailing-arm rear or independent suspension, which will require 4 wheel alignment.
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Old 10th February 2010, 10:59   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anupam00 View Post
90 % cases Balancing of two tyre is enough as front two tyre wear & tear is maximum all front wheel drive car
but yes 10 % cases all tyre balancing is all tyre might be required.

Thanks
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
Boss... I really respect the intention of your thread... to make consumers aware, but kindly check the accuracy of the inforrmation you provide.

Balancing is required fo ALL wheels. That is FACT. Balancing is a process where the wheels are removed from the car and mounted on a balancing machine. .
I completely understand & Practice the Process of Balancing i have my close association with Manufacturing of Alignment & Balancing Machines but the case why I say is balancing of all tyres are required fewer times - I wrote car is functioning well & no jumps at any speed but than also balancing of four tyres.

I agree but there are cars in Indian Market for which alignment of all four wheels are required example Lancer,esteem etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by nickatnite View Post
This thread is ludicrous. More than a rant/diatribe rather than being instructive. I do respect the sentiment but a little thought and research should have been put into the content to inform us about potential malpractices that we should be aware of. Discontinuing a model is not malpractice but progress, IMO.
Well this thread is carefully though of & the perceptive is to identify the malpractices of various manufacturers sometimes with intention & sometimes without intention - nothing else. The perception is again individual. Discontinuation of a model does not always means Progress it might also be for other potential benefits as in the case of Alto it was giving a competition to a model of the same manufacturer that is Alto 1.1 competing with Wagon r & zen at that point of time,So was the case of Maruti 800 5 speed giving competition to Alto lx,may be sales figure of that time might q.e.d that as well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by aerohit View Post
He is probabaly referring to Alignment for FWD cars that have axle-spring combination for the rear, that only goes up-down. The rear is not independent suspension for many of these cars like , Swift, i20, City etc,

But cars like Accord and many other bigger sedans have trailing-arm rear or independent suspension, which will require 4 wheel alignment.
Yes,I totaly agree to it.
Request all to contribute the malpractices of manufacturers in order to make customer aware.
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Old 10th February 2010, 11:25   #11
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Hyundai-huge labour rates at its workshops. A routine santro service can cost as much as 4,000 rupees.
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Old 26th March 2010, 20:41   #12
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Two more points to add up:

Normally a consumer thinks that if he buys original spare part from market than the cost is lower as he might save tax etc what he pays that might not be true in all the cases -blanket statement cannot be made.

The manufacturers are taking some steps by ensuring that original oem doesn't sell spare in open market.
2. Manufacturers are also giving some spare's less than available in market recent example santro steering column cost less in dealership than in market & manufacturer are also not doing counter sales so the point they have is to get the spare & service from them only.

This is not a malpractice but again buyer's beware -open market is not always cheaper.

Thanks & Regards
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Old 27th March 2010, 00:18   #13
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Man, I can see the intention of the thread, but I feel you lost the way somewhere, lots of venting in here. With regard to spares and their prices and purchasing practices, most of what you have said is true. However, on a personal note, having owned Maruti brand of vehicles since 1986 and having them serviced through MASS, I have never had any problem ever either in maintenance or pricing. Guess individual dealers in different cities follow different practices, some honorable and some not so honest. Anyways, kudos to your efforts.
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Old 27th March 2010, 01:02   #14
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See, spare part pricing and labor rates are anyways going through the roof. I do not think it categorizes as malpractice. Exploitation, yes but malpractice, I am not sure fits this description.

The other day I got my Tata car serviced at a Dealership workshop. Amongst lots of issues that I noted one was overpricing of parts/consummables being sold at these places. The oil (Castrol Magnatec) costed me close to 1200 bucks (or was it 1400?!!). However, when my BIL's car was sent after two days to a mere TASP they just charged something close to 800 bucks for the same Magnatec oil (same quantity as well). So you can see the difference here? I am sure if I go to the market and enquire the price of a 5 ltr Castrol Magnatec pack (Tata cars need less than this for a full oil change) it will be less than even 800 bucks. This is exploitation of the customers, IMO.

However, they also engage in certain malpractices. In the same service (my car at the dealership) they changed tons of gaskets and oil seals without any need (there was no leaking oil or anything anywhere) and charged me over 1500 bucks in parts and labor charges. They did a few other such things. Even the 150 bucks for a Waxoyl body treatment was a farce as they did no such thing. I was standing there next to the car when it was washed and mopped. It is only when I reached home and started scrutinizing the 2 page long list of parts changed and works done that I discovered this waxoyl thing!

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Old 27th March 2010, 08:56   #15
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i have also observed that the oil is often NEVER changed during servicing even if they charge us for it.

I always chose a MASS that allows me to stick around when the servicing is being done: i usually buy the oils from Hindustan Oils a day before, head over to the MASS, and get the oils changed in front of me along with the servicing. if parts need changing, i visually get to inspect and ok the change. This way I can be sure that the car is really getting taken care of and I get to indulge in a bit of wrenching. A saturday/sunday well spent I say!
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