Go Back   Team-BHP > BHP India > The Indian Car Scene


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 22nd February 2012, 20:17   #31
Distinguished - BHPian
 
vb-san's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: S'pore/Thrissur
Posts: 4,458
Thanked: 3,084 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Even though a late entrant I feel Lexus will do well in India. Itís indeed a known Luxury brand, and with the way our market for Luxury cars are growing, the reliable Lexus could surely find its place among the premium players.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Lacks excitement: Lexus' are supremely refined & comfortable, yes. Equally, they are known to be boring to drive. This immediately takes the brand off the list of the enthusiasts. In addition, being perceived as boring can affect brand perceptions. The Lexus LFA is one exception, albeit it's a niche product that will probably never see Indian shores.
Indeed, in earlier days Volvo cars used to be the boring manís car, but now Lexus is a mighty contender to steal that spot.

Talking about Volvo, if Lexus can bring their cars in a price bracket slightly below the CBU Volvos, itís a recipe for success IMO. And they donít have the negative publicity of bus brand / Chinese ownership.


Quote:
Originally Posted by elantracrdi05 View Post
2. Lexus badging for the GS (possibly their mainstay - conjecture here) may simply be confused with the Camry. People at that price bracket may not want their cars confused with Camrys.
Sorry to disagree, this used to be the case earlier, but the current crop of Lexus surely have different/better design cues compared to a regular Toyota.
vb-san is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2012, 20:53   #32
BHPian
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Anand, Gujarat / Virginia Beach, US
Posts: 454
Thanked: 165 Times
Default

Great news. I am big fan of Lexus. No manufacture can match reliability of Lexus. Just checked 2011 consumer reports and as usual, Top slot is occupied by Lexus.
I will agree that they are boring to drive but new IS is much improved in driving dynamics compared to outgoing model.
I hope they bring in Lexus IS and that should replace my Merc C class.

Quote:
Originally Posted by elantracrdi05
2. Lexus badging for the GS (possibly their mainstay - conjecture here) may simply be confused with the Camry. People at that price bracket may not want their cars confused with Camrys.
I disagree here. Lexus GS was/is not based on Camry at all. GS is a different platform than Camry. It is ES that shares platform/chassis with Camry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vb-san
Sorry to disagree, this used to be the case earlier, but the current crop of Lexus surely have different/better design cues compared to a regular Toyota.
+1. The newer Lexus range has been redesigned in such a way that they looks different than their Toyota counterpart.
Nitrous Power is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2012, 21:07   #33
Team-BHP Support
 
Mpower's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,414
Thanked: 1,627 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Its a little late but that's only because we cant seem to understand what's stopping them?

Its not at all too late to the point that they cannot make an impact in the market. Audi and Porsche were late to the SUV game but their products delivered a knock out punch to the competetion

Lack of diesels is a disadvantage but a huge pool of unsatisfied Merc/VW/Audi customers with 'burnt fingers' provides a ready customer base thirsty for a reliable luxury product.

After all what good is saving 2K at the bunk if you are hit with 70K service/repair bill and massive depreciation to the tune of lakhs?? These will very quickly wipe out the diesel savings and then some.

Lexus can start off with the IS200D (yes diesel) at the low end which compares favorably with the C/A4/3r.

At the high end, LS460 petrol can go against the S350/740i crowd that is not so sensitive to fuel costs. This type of customer is predominantly chauffeur driven and should'nt matter that the car lacks steering feel or handles poorly.

The GS has been a global flop and hopefully the GS hybrid will take the place of the diesel.

Last edited by Mpower : 22nd February 2012 at 21:09.
Mpower is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2012, 21:59   #34
PPS
Senior - BHPian
 
PPS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: mumbai
Posts: 1,833
Thanked: 1,609 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Building the Lexus brand & image in India will be an extremely delicate exercise.
You make a very good point there! Personally i don't really think owning a Lexus is as aspirational as a BMW or an Audi, but yes it's close!

I won't be surprised if they take a top down approach, like some manufacturers have done & launch the LFA first.

Name:  lfa.jpg
Views: 1936
Size:  83.7 KB

Quote:
A lot of us German car owners simply canít wait for 2013 when Lexus arrives on Indian shores.
Hopefully by the time 2013 arrives Lexus wont push ahead their plans to 2015!
PPS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2012, 22:10   #35
BHPian
 
mohit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Toronto / Kurukshetra
Posts: 635
Thanked: 118 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Lexus can definitely do well considering the reliability record of the Germans in India (or elsewhere for that matter!). They have an excellent sales/service network already thanks to Toyota.

I guess they'll take on the E-Class/5 Series and the SUV segment first as the 3-Series/C-class segment is very competitive and relatively more price conscious.
mohit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2012, 06:41   #36
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,111
Thanked: 616 Times
Default

I don't think it's ever too late to enter the market. If BMW could do it as recently as half a decade ago, Lexus, which has decent brand recognition in india already, can do it now.

I completely relate to some of the comments here: I can afford to buy one of the big Germans. But I still can't justify spending big bucks on an unreliable vehicle that's very expensive to maintain. If the Lexus can provide RELIABLE luxury at a REASONABLE upkeep cost, they have a willing customer, I don't care about the other big 3 having a bigger brand image.

Only fly in ointment is I would be really keen for my car to be diesel powered. Dont want to pour money in 5-6 kmpl V6es, when similar pleasure can be provided by diesels. The second concern is pricing. Daft Camry like CBU pricing doesn't work. If theres anyone who is entrenched securely enough in our market to offer locally manufactured / assembled cars, it's Toyota. It would be disappointing if they adopt a CBU route. All the market surveys will show there's enough market share in the Luxo segment to be taken. They need to have the confidence to dive in with heavy commitment.

Finally, I'd be interested in seeing their Indian ad campaigns. If I were brand manager, I wouldn't mind taking mild digs based on reliability in selling the Lexus brand contrasted with other Germans. If there's one aspect that can make place in an Indian's heart over brand and brag value, it's VFM.

All the best to Toyota. In the words of Russell Peters: "Bee a man! Dooo the right thing!"

Cheers
Axe77 is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2012, 12:12   #37
BHPian
 
Raosaheb Desai's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Surat
Posts: 197
Thanked: 113 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Who says Japanese cars handles poorly?
So called rich in India know only Audi, Merc and BMW.
I wish Infiniti launch their G Sedan and EX 350.
Raosaheb Desai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2012, 13:04   #38
BHPian
 
ghostrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Bombay
Posts: 676
Thanked: 297 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
A lot of us German car owners simply can’t wait for 2013 when Lexus arrives on Indian shores. After all, Lexus’ cars are known to offer stupendously high reliability, and are as hassle-free to own as a Corolla. That’s saying a lot when the direct competition – Mercedes, BMW & Audi – inexplicably suffers from poor reliability ratings & expensive upkeep costs. I mean, when a humble Maruti Alto can offer years of reliable service, what reason do the Germans have for their failure?
+1 to this. I don't know about the Beemers and the Audis, but a large number of Indian buyers are finding out that the maintenance costs on the Mercs are astronomical not because of expensive parts and labour, but because of an unwarranted degree of unreliability. Every Merc owner I know has had bad experiences where parts that aren't supposed to fail do. Just look at Manveet's thread about the multiple issues he's had with his ML350.
Reliability will count for a lot.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Then, Lexus is also known to provide unparalleled refinement levels, matches (or beats) the Germans on spec & features and has established itself as a luxury car marque in only 25 years since introduction. Lexus’ service quality is the stuff of legend; the brand has frequently topped customer satisfaction rankings and is known to bend over backward for its clientŤle. No surprise then that Lexus has been the best selling luxury brand in North America for a majority of the last decade.
I completely agree. They need to work this into their marketing somehow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Personally, I'm a fan of Lexus' clean designs as well. The understated nature of Lexus could work in its favour, with the rich customer who doesn't necessarily want to draw attention to his wealth.
I'm pretty sure that seeing a Lexus badge on a car is going to get him enough attention, regardless of how sedate the styling is. Indians are more impressed by how much money someone spent rather than how tasteful the acquisition is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
  • Late Entry :
  • Diesels : Lexus has a shockingly limited range of diesel engines.
  • SUVs? : Not having a strong lineup of SUVs will affect Lexus’ India aspirations at a time when our market cant seem to get enough of them.
  • Lacks excitement :
Agree with all of these. Nothing drives sales like SUVs, and not just in India... globally too. I see so many Range Rovers, Fortuners, Cayennes, Land Cruisers, MLs, GLs, X5s, X3s and X1s on the road, not to mention Pajeros and now XUV5oos. 90% of the people buying big SUVs and off-roaders will never leave the tarmac and/or ferry more than 2 people at a time, but that doesnt matter.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
  • Speed & Response time : BMW has proven that a fast, extremely aggressive strategy is key to market penetration.
    ...Can Lexus match the speed of its super-aggressive German rivals? Audi recently stated that it will overtake Mercedes in 2 years. Obviously, the VW group company has no intentions of slowing down.
  • Brand : In the 20+ lakh segment, brand is everything. The badge can make or break your product. While Lexus is well-established in North America, it doesn't quite enjoy the same appeal in other markets. Building the Lexus brand & image in India will be an extremely delicate exercise. Will Lexus be able to build the same aspirational value that the three-pointed star or blue/white roundel enjoy?
These to me are the two BIGGEST factors by far. Lexus will have to create an image around the brand that's driven by aspiration. To do this, they'd have to take a top-down approach where they bring in high-value low-volume models that are at the top of their range... but at the same time they need to be extremely savvy with their marketing. Just having a top-end model and not making any noise about it will be useless... just look at how badly Nissan flopped with the Teana.
Start by bringing in the LS/GS models and then launch the IS soon after. In my opinion the IS is a sexy looking thing. Slot one beside a 3-series or a C-class and the Germans look stodgy and outdated in comparison.

Last edited by ghostrider : 23rd February 2012 at 13:05.
ghostrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2012, 14:40   #39
Senior - BHPian
 
maxbhp's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: C C K
Posts: 1,365
Thanked: 61 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by SankalpDesai View Post
A comparison with Infiniti is inevitable here as both are super luxury brands of otherwise day-to-day Japanese marques. .

Not to Forget Acura from Honda which has been making their cars looking ugly in the Acura Form. Just have a look at the models. It just doesn't looks like it belongs to Earth. Its more Martian
Attached Thumbnails
Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017-acura.jpg  

maxbhp is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2012, 16:49   #40
Senior - BHPian
 
asr245's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Gurgaon
Posts: 1,114
Thanked: 326 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by maxbhp View Post
Not to Forget Acura from Honda which has been making their cars looking ugly in the Acura Form. Just have a look at the models. It just doesn't looks like it belongs to Earth. Its more Martian
What's with the pointed nose? or is it the grille that gives it such an impression?

Either way, I will still prefer the Acura over the Germans.
asr245 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th February 2012, 02:00   #41
BHPian
 
kadanaJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 337
Thanked: 98 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

+1 for choosing a Lexus over a German.

While I would prefer a diesel engine (that IS200D looks pretty tempting), I wouldn't mind buying a Lexus petrol either.

The amount I'd save on maintenance, spares, upkeep etc. should easily offset the costs of filling up on expensive gasoline.

That said, if there's a diesel option available, I'd buy that over anything else, hands down.
kadanaJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th February 2012, 02:18   #42
Team-BHP Support
 
Technocrat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Central NJ
Posts: 14,801
Thanked: 2,312 Times
Smile re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Just the other day, i was wondering as to why are Premium brands like Lexus/Acura/Infinity are not tapping the ever growing Indian Market. Nice to see that Lexus has started taking these steps.

And unlike old days where these premium brands were just Rebadged version of their mainstream models, the current generation of Premium Jap cars look noticeably different than their regular models.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SankalpDesai View Post
A comparison with Infiniti is inevitable here as both are super luxury brands of otherwise day-to-day Japanese marques. Nissan is also planning to bring Infiniti to Indian shores and spice up the competition. But Toyota has proved itself in the past decade or so and Nissan has been quite slow in terms of bringing in the right models and its product placement.
Quote:
Originally Posted by maxbhp View Post
Not to Forget Acura from Honda which has been making their cars looking ugly in the Acura Form. Just have a look at the models. It just doesn't looks like it belongs to Earth. Its more Martian
Actually, frankly speaking neither Acura nor Infinity have the badge value equivalent to Lexus in USA, dont get me wrong, the Acura & infinity are very well perceived as luxury brands but the product range that they have do not span across the 3 model ranges that the Germans have.

Both Acura & Infinity models primarily compete with the 3/C/A4 class its the Lexus which goes right till the S/7/A8 territory & even higher (LFA). They have wide array of products & almost all of them are doing well except for the entry level ones
Technocrat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th February 2012, 03:55   #43
BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 187
Thanked: 136 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

A bit late here, my few cents on this one,

Firstly I don't think I could agree more on whatever GTO has summarized of the whole "Lexus' Indian Challenge". I think its all very well put in a nutshell by him.

Sorry for going a bit off-topic here, but I have a point to make,

Our family car history roots deep down into Japs only! the last time we had a car which wasn't a jap was a Ford Escort back in '98. Eversince then our garage has just been Toyota's and Honda's always! (Toyota Corsa - as a jap import our first A/T car, Qualis, 2x Innova, the old Corolla, Altis, Honda City, Honda Civic)

There are quite a lot of reasons why this has been happening since so long:

- There is absolutely no question here that these cars are dull/boring to drive (apart from my civic ) but offer the smoothest possible ride, high comfort levels and of-course the much coveted reliability
- Of my observations, IMO everyone apart from the ones belonging to our cult of enthusiasts prefer a package of comfort, luxury and reliability over driving dynamics and handling.

Which brings us back to why Lexus > Germans from my family perspective

- GTO mentioned this and I could just smile at that line, my father does definitely belong to the people who doesn't want eyebrows to raise with regards to his wealth just by seeing him in a fancy car. We've been on the C+ segment for almost a decade now, with a lot more scope of upgrades, but dad just doesn't wish to go German no matter how much you convince him.
- For a comfortable plush ride with the family I don't think anything gets better than a Lexus
- Lexus has always had an understated aspirational value somewhere hidden as we've seen some unofficial imports around and the brand recognition is there.

They need to play their cards right, CKD pricing (or CBU 'reasonable' pricing) and not another Camry-type-disaster, Aggressive market penetration strategy and the brand manager should really take up the herculean task of marketing a petrol-dominated car company in a diesel-hearted country like our. I wont say its particularly a very bad drawback (I mean look at Honda) but it could be a killer.

Last edited by n:CorE : 24th February 2012 at 04:03.
n:CorE is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 24th February 2012, 08:41   #44
BHPian
 
NinadJoshi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Maratha Country
Posts: 289
Thanked: 243 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Lexus has always been the catch up brand. They entered the world market as Mercedes substitutes, and quickly made a niche for themselves as a no nonsense luxury brand. In that sense it does not matter when they enter the Indian market, they are sure to make a place for themselves.

The brand may lack in perceptions of sportiness (~BMW) or stateliness (~MB), but its almost fanatical quest for providing the best ownership experience is evident in its relentless efforts towards raising standards of 'real world' parameters such as comfort, reliability, excellence in engineering and so on. In the long run these matter, which is why Lexus enjoys such a solid customer loyalty. In the US economic turmoil of 2008-2009, Lexus posted an 11% gain in the worst December-to-December in what was one of the worst years in recent automotive history of North America, numbers which were miles above any other luxury brand's performance for the same period. (The second best performing luxury brand in the same period was Acura with 7% growth; another hardworking and understated luxury brand that tends to keep itself below the radar while offering a high quality ownership experience to its customers).

As for those carrying the conception that Lexus is a boring brand. There are several sub-demographics within the luxury markets, and if you look at them, you will see a distinctly different customer for a Lexus v/s BMW v/s Cadillac v/s Audi and so on. I do not think a man 'made' for a BMW 7 series will ever be happy in a Lexus LS460, and vice versa.

In any case, one thing is sure. With Lexus entering the market, some benchmarks in the Indian luxury vehicle market are surely going to be upped forever. Someday we will all thank Lexus for making Mercedes a bit more reliable
NinadJoshi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th February 2012, 13:10   #45
Senior - BHPian
 
maxbhp's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: C C K
Posts: 1,365
Thanked: 61 Times
Default re: Lexus - The Indian Challenge. EDIT: Launch confirmed for 2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by Technocrat View Post
Actually, frankly speaking neither Acura nor Infinity have the badge value equivalent to Lexus in USA, dont get me wrong, the Acura & infinity are very well perceived as luxury brands but the product range that they have do not span across the 3 model ranges that the Germans have.

Both Acura & Infinity models primarily compete with the 3/C/A4 class its the Lexus which goes right till the S/7/A8 territory & even higher (LFA). They have wide array of products & almost all of them are doing well except for the entry level ones
Very right. With respect to brand value, Acura comes no where near the LEXUS in the current market.

Lexus is doing well because TOYOTA has invested with confidence in the brand . Much like how BMW invested in Rolls Royce. Where as Honda is not investing in the brand Acura like how it should much like how Merc invested in Maybach.

We cannot go with test water model when it comes to luxury branding. Either you do or don't do and when you do, the Financial Model for investing based on Market Research and Future profit should be well calculated or it can have disastrous outcomes.

Am sure Lexus have burnt some good amout of money in LFA and I doubt it would succeed with the likes of Italian race breeds. The reason is unlike in Luxury segment (7/A8/S/XJ) snob value is important but at the same time upkeeping cost and resale value is also a factor. But in the super luxury segment snob value forms the highest and the most important factor of purchase decision. Hence the very idea why the brand LEXUS sold may not work the same for LF-A. Am sure they know this but still they decided to burn their fingers so that slowly the brand establishes itself as something comparable to the german marques.

This effort is missing in ACURA and INFINITI. That is long term investement based on future sales.

Last edited by maxbhp : 24th February 2012 at 13:13.
maxbhp is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
2017 Lexus LC 500 unveiled at Detroit shyn The International Automotive Scene 16 21st May 2016 10:13
Hyundai to launch luxury sedan "Genesis" in Europe EDIT: Mulls Indian launch as well mints21 The International Automotive Scene 19 4th November 2015 18:34
Confirmed: Fast and Furious 8 release in April 2017 Tushar Shifting gears 8 27th April 2015 20:36
2009 Nissan GTR - Present and Future. EDIT: Spec-V launch date & pricing confirmed Amien The International Automotive Scene 37 7th March 2014 12:05
Taprobana 4x4 Challenge 2012 (Rain Forest Challengeí Srilanka) matchless 4x4 Excursions 29 3rd December 2012 19:00


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 23:16.

Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks