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Old 15th October 2011, 16:32   #46
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

I feel that if you look from the beginning (since Maruti) all of their four products were gamechangers, be it 800 (I really feel bad that why still MSIL have not found a proper NAME for 800), Omni (earlier was known as simply Maruti Van), Gypsy and of course Esteem (I feel the shape is still far more appealing than Dzire). Then I feel Indica, Safari, Qualis, Scorpio, Santro, I20, Fortuner, Superb and now XUV500 fit the definition of gamechangers.

The potential gamechangers but proved to be duds are Fiat Uno, Mahindra Voyager, Ford Fusion (which I love very much and own one), Getz, Jazz (can't write off as yet), Xylo, Aria and Kizashi (First Sports sedan in India).

I think EON and Alto will coexist (due to price difference) and eat upon the shares of Santro, Wagon R, A Star.

To all who are writing off the Alto, its foolish to think that MSIL was not aware of EON and they have not prepared themselves for it, as no company will take lightly any attack on their BREAD and BUTTER product. In fact its ONLY Maruti who has n no of choices in B segment.
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Old 15th October 2011, 18:33   #47
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

I am also SURPRISED to see that other than me no one has mentioned OMNI. (May be it was a GameStarter rather than a Gamechanger). Still can't see any competition and it has ALWAYS outnumbered EECO till date.
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Old 15th October 2011, 21:00   #48
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

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Originally Posted by carwatcher View Post
I feel that if you look from the beginning (since Maruti) all of their four products were gamechangers, be it 800 (I really feel bad that why still MSIL have not found a proper NAME for 800), Omni (earlier was known as simply Maruti Van), Gypsy and of course Esteem (I feel the shape is still far more appealing than Dzire). Then I feel Indica, Safari, Qualis, Scorpio, Santro, I20, Fortuner, Superb and now XUV500 fit the definition of gamechangers.
True, the 800 and the Omni were first in their respective segments and the fact that they are still selling is saying a lot about the impact they have.

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Originally Posted by carwatcher View Post
The potential gamechangers but proved to be duds are Fiat Uno, Mahindra Voyager, Ford Fusion (which I love very much and own one), Getz, Jazz (can't write off as yet), Xylo, Aria and Kizashi (First Sports sedan in India).
Uno was the very succesful model in Europe but couldnt make a mark in India. Bad pricing, worst service and spare parts costs and Indica killed it.

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I think EON and Alto will coexist (due to price difference) and eat upon the shares of Santro, Wagon R, A Star.
That could very well be the picture ahead. The most vulnerable among these seems to be the A-Star.

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To all who are writing off the Alto, its foolish to think that MSIL was not aware of EON and they have not prepared themselves for it, as no company will take lightly any attack on their BREAD and BUTTER product. In fact its ONLY Maruti who has n no of choices in B segment.
Alto is too much of a succesful car to be laid low by a new entrant. And the brand Maruti is valuable to many people. I do not foresee drastic impact on Alto sales by the introduction of the Eon. More than the Alto, I think, the Spark/Beat will be more hit.

Last edited by simplyself : 15th October 2011 at 21:01.
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Old 15th October 2011, 21:43   #49
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

In the 2 wheelers I would put IND-SUZUKI AX100 as a game changer. It started the 100cc motorcycle trend and the Japanese invasion. What a bike at that point of time! My dad's bike was the 5th in India, I think.
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Old 15th October 2011, 23:04   #50
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

I think Daewoo Cielo should be included since it was the first Fuel injected car in India. It was killed due to the infamous gumming problem due to bad quality fuel and the poor mileage. And finally Daewoo Gave up and died.

Also Pulsar as many mentioned before me.

The Suzuki Swift which proved that 5L + hatchbacks can sell in India.

Bajaj Caliber (not the hoodibaba or croma) for proving that Bajaj could really make motorcycles (and not excuses) and also unsettling the hero honda for the first time since its start.

Fiat Uno for clocking 3lakh bookings (although they never managed to sell much eventually). such mass advance bookings were unseen in India. Maruti Zen also managed to clock 2.8 lakh bookings and went on to become a huge success. The strike at Fiat plant and inability to meet the demand effectively killled the Fiat brand in its bud. If not a game changer for India, surely a game changer for Fiat in India.
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Old 16th October 2011, 00:20   #51
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I would say that in reality our automobile market has just started growing and hence every car which targets a new audience at first seems to be a game changer but as they say the indian car market is one of the toughest to crack and how things might progress is difficult for even the greatest of automobile experts to fathom out . Hence the XUV 5OO( why the OO???) or the eon are too early to be termed as game changers .

Best example toyota liva . Everyone i knew including myself felt the car would be a game changer but as we all know things havent actually gone as per toyotas expectations . Same thing happened with the tata nano .
Everyone wants a cheap car but no one wants a "cheap" car !

As per me the ultimate game changers in the indian market after obviously maruti 800 and omni are as follows :-

1) Old honda city :- This car at the time of its launch was bounds and leaps ahead from what we had on our roads at that time .it had a brilliant engine and good snob value .

2) Mitsubishi lancer :- The obvious fact that people even today after nearly 15 years of its launch still go gaga over its handling and its balanced chassis is a clear example why it was a game changer for us lot who love cars . Finally we had a car which we would love to drive . It had the oumph and the fun factor . Its sad really that because of mitsubishis Tie up with the incompetent lot at HM ( no offences to anyone related to HM) this car rather this company has lost the reppo that it had once earned .

3)Maruti esteem /1000 :- Where as the honda city was targetting the premium segment of sedans in india back then the maruti stable however offered the 1000 for anyone with medium budget range . It gave access to the indian families to travel in comfort and relative amout of class as well .

4) Tata Safari :- Enter the beast . This car had a bucket load of problems and niggels but still the reason why its there on my list of game changers is because it made the dream of many people come true who wanted to travel without giving a damn about the lack of roads in extreme comfort and with a descent amount of a self identity .this car reeks of character even today. Although its been 10 + years since we first saw a saffari its timeless design is still the best amoungst its class and yes so are its niggels Back then the only affordable vehicles with descent GC were gypsy , jeep and the sumo if i recall correctly . The jeep and gypsy were great for off road junkies and the sumo was a hit in the taxi segment but nothing existed for a buyer who wanted the best of both worlds . Enter the safari

5) Toyota Qualis :- If there was a proper peoples mover it was the qualis . This car had everything the legendary tag of toyota , plenty of space to move a house around , and above all it wasnt that bad to drive as per standards in those times .

I feel Rest every other car that has been launched of the late is basically a modified version of the elements that we first saw in these cars .
And hence these are the cars according to me were the first to explore into different areas of our automobile segment and they are the true game changers of our automobile history
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Old 16th October 2011, 03:33   #52
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

I am not much into 2-wheelers as much as I used to be. But here are my 2 cents...
Gamechangers :
1. Hero Puch (upgrade from Hero Majestic and Luna).
2. Kinetic Honda (upgrade from Luna especially for ladies).
3. LML Vespa (upgrade from Hamara Bajaj, fuel guage, Indicators and Wheel caps were first seen in scooters)
4. Yamaha RX100 (need I say anything)
5. Hero Honda CD100 (like Maruti 800 in Motorcyles)
6. Hero Honda Splendor (like Tendulkar in Motorcyles still going very strong, has seen many rival products came and go)
7. Hero Honda Karizma
8. Bajaj Pulsar (can be compared like what Swift did to Cars and biggest gamechanger according to me, cult like status and imagine Bajaj Auto's situation had it failed)
9. Honda Eterno (last nail in the coffin for LML and Bajaj)
10. Honda Activa (still commands 8-10 months waiting period since its launch).
11. Honda CBR 250R (potential gamechanger from the early response)
12. Bajaj Avenger (and Kawasaki Eliminator)

Potential Gamechangers proved to be Dud :
1. Hero Honda Street
2. Bajaj Byk (does anyone remember)
3. All Electrical bikes (due to sheer lack of power and performance)
4. Bajaj Saffire
5. Bajaj Chetak 4 Stroke
6. Yamaha Enticer
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Old 16th October 2011, 10:34   #53
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Originally Posted by amit_2025
There have been sweeping changes in the Indian Automotive scene over the last decade.

Over the years there have been consistent "Game Changers" or evolution's that have changed the way India drives.

The Mahindra XUV5OO being the most recent (as far as the initial response suggests)

What according to you are the most important Landmarks that you recall immediately?

Cars or events that set benchmarks and challenged the others to improve?

Some that come to my mind from the post Maruti 800 launch stage are (segment wise):

1) First Gen Maruti Zen
2) Hyundai Santro
2) Maruti Swift
4) Hyundai i-20
5) Old Honda City
6) Toyota Innova
7) Honda Civic
8) Toyota Fortuner
9) Skoda Superb

Would have probably included the Nano on perception and objective, but has it really proved to be a Game Changer yet?
Agree with all of the above except i20. I think many of the other vehicles being mentioned in the following posts are not enough to be called "game changers" (except maybe the Scorpio).

That tag should be used much more judiciously and vehicles such as figo etc IMO are not enough.
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Old 16th October 2011, 11:00   #54
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

Not a game changer by sales. But Aria was a landmark event in Indian automotive scene for 2 reasons.
1) It was the first time an Indian manufacturer came up with a premium luxury vehicle. And every review (including tbhp) was positive-except for price factor.
2) From the ownership experience of tbhp members till now, the vehicle seems to be fairly niggle-free in the first version itself. Something new when it comes to vehicles from Indian manufacturers.
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Old 16th October 2011, 14:55   #55
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Agree with all of the above except i20.
Oh no, the i20 was a game changer for Hyundai!!!! It changed the way they looked at customer complaints.!!! The i20 changed the "game" of addressing customer complaints.

The very fact that they, for a long time, were refusing to acknowledge the steering issues as a problem, just shows how serious they were to address the issues & how good their A.S.S's really were!!!! Genuine steering complaints from i20 owners were treated as "jhik jhik" & "mental blocks". Then, how cleverly and silently they issued a TSB to change yoke spring & yoke pads on God knows how many i20s and i10s to address the steering issues.

Atleast companies like Maruti & Honda have the honesty and guts to acknowledge issues in their car publically & recall cars. But with Hyundai, with their new thinking & new possibilities, it is hopeless to expect anything!!!!
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Old 18th October 2011, 01:25   #56
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

Lt. Kanchan, Yes there have been issues with the i20 around the steering rattle and Hyundai has not acknowledged the same to most of our disappointment.

However -

- Is it probably one of the better looking hatch backs that India has seen? Yes
- Did it provide interiors in a hatch that were unseen in India before? Yes
- Did it create a new segment while also setting the sales charts on fire? Yes
- Did it Re define the way India perceives Hatch Backs? Yes
- Did it challenge the others (Swift, Jazz) to innovate and improve? Yes

IMO, it was definitely a Game Changer and, while, as I've mentioned earlier that the list I put is purely my personal opinion (and not essentially my favorite cars), I look forward to hearing all BHPians list of Game Changers including yourself.

So what's your list?
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Old 18th October 2011, 02:06   #57
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

While almost all have already been put down, one game changing movement was the very entry of Mercedes-Benz in India in mid 90's, I still remember getting a W124 from a TATA dealer in Ahmedabad, it was the greatest moment in life, believe me a new 124 got you more looks then perhaps a Bentley today does, may sound like an exaggeration but some taxi guys would actually move aside in Mumbai and Auto Wallahs of Ahmedabad would keep safe distance even in those days,

While no words describe the W124, its Mercedes-Benz who got us up on the world map, not only did they come here so ahead in time but back then they did things which they now do not,

You need a CBU? Yes, Every option was available to you in rupee price, I remember buying the S-Class and price list was like a booklet as even prices for every plastic option was a part of it, basically besides Distronic everything was available,

They then started the W210, And it's facelift, And the greatest of all was the fact that in early 2000's the Mercedes-Benz S-Class was made here, it hardly had much of a volume but they started assembly for it in SKD form, it was the greatest thing to read and see, and to imagine a car known as the world's best is now made here and the only place outside Sindelfingen!!!

We were ruling! And that started the cycle today which others are yet to follow,

Next step, BMW's Indian entry,

While BMW did not come early as a manufacturer, they came and created a stir unlike anything ever seen, they did things which even a mass market car maker did not do, marketing, launch invites, I still have their invite it was a huge plastic box finished in high quality, the way they were aggressive, launching models all along, updating models every year, 525d was upgraded to 530d and we had technology like Night Vision by them in the 530d high line,

They bought luxury to the masses, and made the mass realize a brand and its associations need not only be aspirational but now can also be in your hands with products like the 320d CE / 520d / X1 And a lot more will always follow,

And no one can ignore the SUV craze the Audi Q7 created!

And of course the Honda City in 1998 still remember our 1.5 S

regards,

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1) Old honda city :- This car at the time of its launch was bounds and leaps ahead from what we had on our roads at that time .it had a brilliant engine and good snob value .
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Old 18th October 2011, 09:02   #58
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Originally Posted by amit_2025 View Post

- Is it probably one of the better looking hatch backs that India has seen? Yes
- Did it provide interiors in a hatch that were unseen in India before? Yes
- Did it create a new segment while also setting the sales charts on fire? Yes
- Did it Re define the way India perceives Hatch Backs? Yes
- Did it challenge the others (Swift, Jazz) to innovate and improve? Yes
Agreed. That's you personal opinion and you have a right to it, but so do I. It is also a fact that the pathetic way Hyundai handled the entire steering rattle issue was probably a first in their history and Indian automotive history as well.

The i20 sold in large numbers because of Hyundai's name, because the car looked good and Hyundai came up with tempting, well made TV ads. Had Fiat provided decent service back up, the i20 would have had serious competition from the Punto and would have not racked up such sales numbers. Ironically, I know a couple of guys who sold off their troubled i20s and bought the Punto instead and they are quite happy with their new rides.

However, a "game changer" should also have other traits like being trouble free and have service back up that quickly sorts out serious issues. Has Hyundai done that with the i20? Its been more nearly four year since i20's launch in India and yet the steering issues persist. I know troubled i20 owners will concur with this. A so called "game changer" is not supposed to under go multiple steering rack/column replacements and on very visit to the service center, it must not have its steering rack opened up to fix steering rattle issues.

Please understand that no company should take such rattle issues from a critical component like the steering lightly, which Hyundai has most certainly done. It isn't some minor plastic rattle that can be ignored. I was insulted and treated like dirt when I tried to make those fools at Hyundai understand this.

I know, there are people would say what's the big deal and why such a fuss about the steering rattle. But when you personally face steering malfunction and barely avoid hitting something due to loss of directional control, you will know what I mean. Before buying an i20, how many people are actually aware of that such a rattle exists in the i20 and that Hyundai has failed miserably to solve the issue? A couple of friends who were interested in buying the i20 quickly struck it off their list after I showed them "what" the steering rattle issue was. A couple of 2010 & 2011 i20 owners were blissfully unaware of steering rattle in their i20s until I showed and made the rattle heard to them. There are people whose first car was the i20 and they are sorely disappointed with it.

The i20 sales got into Hyundai's head and has certainly made them arrogant, hence these half hearted attempts at solving the steering issues. Now, they have all but given up on fixing the issue. This was not the case when the first came to India and launched the Santro and the Accent. They still remain Hyundai's most trouble free cars to date, unlike the i20!!!!

Hyundai has also acquired a nasty habit of siding with their service stations even when it is clear that their service center goofed up. There are a few stories, including mine, here on team-bhp proving this. When those chaps from Hyundai, Delhi came down to have a look at my car last year, they were initially refusing to acknowledge that there was some trouble with the car and tried to mock me by asking "where is the noise". However, one TD later when one of their guys drove the car, they were busy looking under the hood as to what the problem was.

When I pointed to them that the defogger was not functioning fully, one of the Delhi chaps literally tried to charge me by saying it is because of the poorly fitted sunfilm. When I said that their "great" Junagadh workshop did the sunfilm installation, it looked as if a cat caught that fellow's tongue. His only reaction was a shocked "Oh"!!!

Again, the above is my personal opinion. For the reasons mentioned above, the i20 is a game changer, but for the wrong reasons.

Last edited by skanchan95 : 18th October 2011 at 09:08.
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Old 18th October 2011, 09:13   #59
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

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Agreed. That's you personal opinion and you have a right to it, but so do I...


..Again, the above is my personal opinion. For the reasons mentioned above, the i20 is a game changer, but for the wrong reasons.
Someone seems rather unhappy with his purchase!

But you're right on so many levels. The i20 was a game-changer. What it did is bought in features and equipment that was unheard of in a sub-10 lakh car. That IS ALL it did. Nothing else. Honestly, i don't find anything ground-breaking about the i20. Heck, even the design is a borrowed one. Ever seen the Opel Astra hatch sold in the UK?

What the i20 did is started the premium hatchback movement. But then it lost all that fizz in no time. Sales don't speak everything, honestly. The product isn't as good as it seems to be. Hyundai need to get their act together. And I have this feeling that the Fluidic Verna will go the same way. What really did it for the i20's success was the great VFM pricing. The Fluidic Verna isn't priced like that. So what is the Verna's USP? i really don't know.
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Old 18th October 2011, 10:08   #60
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Default Re: Game Changers - Landmark events in the Indian Automotive Scene

The Volvo Buses (both intercity and commuter) for sure, and their trucks to a certain level.

Slightly OT
The following models should have been game changers, but:

Yamaha RD350
Skoda Octavia Combi
Octavia RS
and Palio GTX 1.6
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