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Old 9th December 2012, 12:45   #91
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All I could think of when reading the opening post was 'Where's the 159?'. Fiat should have looked into bring in Alfa Romeo to compete in the 3 series market by (possibly) locally producing the 159 in a way that Tata has done for the Freelander. And to stretch it a little further they could sell hot versions of the MiTo and Giulietta to take on Mini and could be sold alongside Abarth as a sort of performance division. As for the actual plans I am reserving my judgement till the other 3 launches are revealed.

Ps: i know im just an armchair pundit but isn't this forum all about everyone's 2 cents on anything car related? :lol
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Old 9th December 2012, 18:26   #92
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

For me personally the timings are too late as well , 2014 is late as many other members have stated as well.

It means that Fiat is planning to have a shaky 2013 ( assuming that they actually dont launch the new linea ) , it means that what is going to be on offer is the 1.3 and the fire petrol , the latter clearly being something which many do not like given the power.

We know that there are no more T-jets are being produced now , so will we even have a 1.4 turbo available at all next year - or is that one variant less for them in 2013 - maybe they would run a limited production of the Tjets again?

Autocar reported that the refreshed linea will be here in 2013 , but changes are expected to primarily be cosmetic and nothing on the power plants
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Old 9th December 2012, 20:42   #93
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Buying a car means there are multiple factors that the potential buyer considers. Some of them off the top of my head when I associate it with a Fiat vehicle.

1. Quality of the product when it comes out of the showroom.
2. Ability of a normal person (read non-petrolhead) to maintain it that way for 5-7 years at least.
3. Advice from others around the potential buyer who might appear to him as more knowledgable on cars- could be colleagues/family/friends etc.
4. How long would this company stay here/ will they wind up their operations all of a sudden and what would happen to spares availability and resale value in such a case.

When it comes to Fiat, point 1 is someting we dont have much doubt on- they've got a very good product in hand. Unfortunately, thanks to their excellent build quality, their cars are heavier than the competition that uses the same MJD engine. This means others are able to prove on paper that their products are better than Fiat products. Examples are slightly higher acceleration figures, slightly higher FE etc. This is where the Fiat marketing department has failed to capitalize even on their strengths. Stability, ride comfort etc. are not that easy to quantify and they just left it there. If the competition is able to convert Fiat's strong points as weakness and Fiat could do nothing about it, that just means there is some work that need to be done in their marketing division. They were simply not able to sell thier strengths.

Point 2 was again a perception from the Uno/Palio days where the spares were expensive. Ford was also in a similar situation with Ikon/Fusion. Both the companies corrected themselves when it came to Punto/Linea/Fiesta/Figo. Only difference: marketing folks in Ford knew how to advertise and market the lower cost of ownership and put it across to people. The fact that Fiesta and Figo were selling in good numbers meant more people started giving confidence to the potential buyers based on first hand experience that the maintenance is not really as expensive as it used to be. This led to more sales and naturally, people are more comfortable going for a popular product.

Point 3 is a very subjective and in a lot of cases just based on perception/hearsay. Still, it has a lot of weightage when it comes to a new car purchase. If a potential buyer is planning for a new car instead of a 2-3 year old used car (especially in case of petrol versions where they usually don't have much on odo and plenty of life left in them), atleast 60% of them would state the reason as "I didn't want to take a risk with a used car and hence went for a new one." When a layman decides to minimize the risk on a new purchase, it would be difficult for him to go ahead with a purchase against a negative advice, which is unfortunately floating around in very huge numbers against Fiat.

Point 4 is something that is probably in the mind of a lot of people and is adversely affecting the brand image. PAL was our 'Fiat' and Mahindra was our 'Jeep'. It is difficult to change that image from commom man's mind.
PAL shut its shop, dragged down Peugeot down the drain as far as Indian market is concerned and screwed up the re-entry of Fiat into Indian market with the Uno. All this blame is still reflecting on the Fiat brand image as far as a layman is concerned, although Fiat had no control over the first two incidents. Add to this the fact that Fiat is still selling in very low numbers. Peugeot TUD-5 engine was still doing duty in Zen and Esteem even after the 309 was discontinued. So the fact that MJD is used in Maruti/Tata is no guarantee that Fiat will still be around even if their cars are not moving out of their dealerships. As someone rightly pointed out before, they don't even have a single product that sells reasonable volume now. Who can blame the common man if he doubts Fiat would wind up their India operations?

If good products from Fiat end up as duds in Indian market, the solution is definitely not to put more models into the market and get the 'market dud' tag for them too. The way I see the announced strategy, they've learned from at least some of their mistakes from past experience includig the Tata JV and want to ensure they correct the A.S.S aspect before they launch a new model so that they can change the perception at least from then on. If they launch the new models now, there is no guarantee that they would sell any better than the current Punto. Even once the service situation and perception improves, it is more difficult to market a 'flop' car than to market a 'new' car, even it the so called 'flop' is an international hit.

Disclaimer -I'm yet another guy, like many others in this thread who has zero experience in marketing and probably thinks could have marketed the Fiat brand better than the big guys who currently manage the show in Fiat India.
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Old 10th December 2012, 00:19   #94
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Quote:
Originally Posted by vroomsome View Post
I am a Fiat owner with first hand Fiat a.s.s experience. improved a.s.s? not the only one. seems like a recurring theme with Fiat. you see the paradox of your post? seems like you have been hibernating.
Well, I have been a Fiat Linea owner for the past two years too and I have nothing but positive experiences with Fiat's service. So do many other people in this forum. Just because people have made mistakes in the past, it doesn't mean that they pack up and leave. I am really happy that Fiat is not heart-broken after reading all the things being said in this forum and still continue to fight
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Old 10th December 2012, 10:49   #95
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

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Old 10th December 2012, 11:16   #96
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Quote:
Originally Posted by jessie007 View Post
Unless FIAT launches a new hatchback (in the Rs 4-7 lakhs price range) at the earliest, its fate is sealed. Refreshed Punto (aka Evo), new Linea-Viaggio, Abarth variants and products from Chrysler brand cannot bring in volumes. Volumes increase visibility in the market and more people tend to buy a successful vehicle and this has an effect on associated profitability. Since FIAT in itself is not a luxury brand in India (most people don't know that FIAT owns Ferrari, Maserati & Alfa Romeo), visibility and volumes are important and that is only possible with a new hatchback (a well-priced diesel to be precise).

It is not that they have to necessarily develop a new car for India - they already have a gamut of hatchbacks in their portfolio - new Uno, new Palio (both should be renamed for India), Idea & Panda. One needs to check-out FIAT Brazil website to get a good idea.
In fact, they are in the process of developing a "Value World Car" for India and other related markets, and it will target the segment currently dominated by Maruti Alto (or a segment above, depending on the equipment/localisation).

Check out this NDTV interview with Mike Manley, COO, Fiat-Chrysler Asia - http://profit.ndtv.com/videos/ndtv-s...on-alto-257493

More details here as well - http://www.indiancarsbikes.in/cars/f...89/#more-65389
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Old 10th December 2012, 11:30   #97
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenAvi View Post
In fact, they are in the process of developing a "Value World Car" for India and other related markets, and it will target the segment currently dominated by Maruti Alto (or a segment above, depending on the equipment/localisation).

Check out this NDTV interview with Mike Manley, COO, Fiat-Chrysler Asia - http://profit.ndtv.com/videos/ndtv-s...on-alto-257493

More details here as well - http://www.indiancarsbikes.in/cars/f...89/#more-65389
@RavenAvi - I know about the new small/value car and have also mentioned in my post (quoted below). My real peeve is that there are no definite timelines for a small car or even a bigger hatchback, its just 'planned'. If they say they'll launch in the last quarter of 2013 or first quarter of 2014, then there is something to look forward to. Anytime later than that is an eternity in the automobile industry and who knows what the market dynamics are then.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jessie007 View Post
Setting up independent showrooms are in the right direction but there isn't anything exciting to look forward to for the masses. FIAT needs to make an announcement at the earliest about their new up-coming hatchback(s) (be it a low-cost car, Uno, Idea or Panda) with a definite timeline. Otherwise it will be TATA bye bye for good!
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Old 10th December 2012, 12:22   #98
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Fiat-Chrysler Group Unveils Roadmap for India - Official press release from Fiat

- Legendary Jeep® brand to be introduced in India in 2013
- 9 models or significantly refreshed models to be introduced by the Fiat and Jeep brand in the next few years
- Independent Distribution Network to grow to 120 dealers by 2013

Some highlights

- Jeep vehicles will be sold via a Jeep dealer network that will leverage the service and parts support offered by an expanding Fiat dealer network.

- The company will expand its domestic production to include the new Fiat Linea classic edition and the new Fiat Punto edition.

- “Our vision for India will revolve around a three-pronged strategy,” said Mike Manley, Chief Operating Officer for Asia and President and CEO – Jeep Brand. “First, introduction of new vehicles that will soon include the legendary Jeep brand. Second, the expansion of our independent dealer network and, finally, strong marketing initiatives that will continue to improve our awareness and brand perception in the market.”

- Part of the dealer experience will include Fiat Caffe, which will offer customers the opportunity to learn about FIAT’s heritage and also showcase technological innovations from the Fiat Group portfolio across the world.

- The service centers within these dealerships will be another important touch point for consumers, since the goal is to replicate international service standards in India.

Last edited by rameshnanda : 10th December 2012 at 12:23.
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Old 10th December 2012, 12:33   #99
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Let me try to put some clarity in Fiat's plans !

Fiat's India strategy revealed-img_20121206_131749.jpg

This is not very clear, but this is what Fiat shared, and each publication has broken up this information and confused everyone.

From this it looks like:
  • Punto & current Linea will receive a refresh in early 2013, probably once the 60 odd dealers go live - March 2013
  • I assume the existing 'refreshed' Linea will become the Linea Classic in end 2013, and the new Linea will launch in early 2014
  • The New Punto will launch shortly after that
  • A mini SUV will then follow

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenAvi View Post
Check out this NDTV interview with Mike Manley, COO, Fiat-Chrysler Asia - http://profit.ndtv.com/videos/ndtv-s...on-alto-257493
Thanks for that link RavenAvi. Something that has not been mentioned her earlier is the launch of Fiat Mopar. They will handle parts, servicing, customisation, etc. This is very encouraging.
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Old 10th December 2012, 12:43   #100
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

Quote:
Originally Posted by rameshnanda View Post
Fiat-Chrysler Group Unveils Roadmap for India - Official press release from Fiat
Curiously, the official press release is silent on the introduction of Abarth to India.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rameshnanda View Post
- The service centers within these dealerships will be another important touch point for consumers, since the goal is to replicate international service standards in India.
Noble intentions, I hope they walk the talk.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fiat_tarun View Post
Let me try to put some clarity in Fiat's plans !
  • Punto & current Linea will receive a refresh in early 2013, probably once the 60 odd dealers go live - March 2013
That's good news! I have mentioned on this forum earlier that there could be a Punto/Linea refresh once the new dealerships are set up in 2013. Otherwise, it doesn't make sense for the dealers to continue selling older models at the new dealerships.

EDIT: From that presentation, what does the new Linea/Punto/Linea Classic get in end-2015/early-2016 - is that a major refresh?

Last edited by StarrySky : 10th December 2012 at 12:45.
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Old 10th December 2012, 13:09   #101
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

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Originally Posted by StarrySky View Post
That's good news! I have mentioned on this forum earlier that there could be a Punto/Linea refresh once the new dealerships are set up in 2013. Otherwise, it doesn't make sense for the dealers to continue selling older models at the new dealerships.

EDIT: From that presentation, what does the new Linea/Punto/Linea Classic get in end-2015/early-2016 - is that a major refresh?
The Punto and Linea had a minor refresh just 10 months back, so it would be interesing to see what they bring to the table next year.

And yes, The new Punto in 2016 should be the major refresh, the Punto Evo maybe? I say this because, the next-Gen Punto has been put on hold, due to the troubled situation of Europe's economy it is said. And also from the next generation onwards, Linea will take the lead - meaning, till now, the Linea was a Punto based sedan, and from the next-Gen onwards, the Punto would be a Linea based hatch.

Last edited by aravind.anand : 10th December 2012 at 13:10.
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Old 10th December 2012, 13:57   #102
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

This is the nth time that we hear about a possible comeback of Fiat. I sincerely hope it turns out much better for Fiat this time.
Earlier this year when I was about to upgrade to C+ sedan, I really wanted to buy the Linea. Launched in 2008, this car looks beautiful now and will look better than its counterparts even for the next 3 years! Timeless classic! Unfortunately fiat's A.S.S and unpredictable nature made sure I never bought the car. Add to that the car's huge turning radius and sluggish engine were turn offs as well.
Like many of you said, fiat needs to market its products differently. First they have to market their "BRAND". The cars will sell automatically once customers know what the brand is about. Do a lot of people know that Fiat owns Ferrari, Alfa romeo, maseratti, chrysler, Jeep? My guess is NO! Hence they need to build on the brand first. Secondly, look at what GM did. They went all out advertising on maintenance costs. In spite of not having a diesel in the 4-9 lakh category until recently, they managed to stay afloat.
And to do all of this, they need to remain committed to India for the next 3-4 years, come whay may. I hope they turn it around and I can consider buying a Fiat sometime in the next 4-5 years.
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Old 10th December 2012, 14:32   #103
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

All this is good but the all new/updated Linea, Punto and whatever else there is from the Fiat stables needs to come now. Not next year and not 2014. 2014 will require another set of new model launches by Fiat. Apart from the 1.3l diesel, Fiat need a more powerful diesel engine and they have it. Besides; Fiat need to market their products better. Absolute Editions are not going to do anything for Fiat India. I also feel that there is no point in Fiat wasting time with petrol engines. We are a diesel market and it is best if Fiat concentrate on bringing in bigger or more powerful diesel engines for the Linea, Punto and whatever else it plans on launching.

Fiat India also need to start doing a Maruti/Hyundai marketing strategy. Start showing efficiency numbers for their cars when they advertise. All those emotionally connecting ads are good but don't work for sales in our land.

As for the Abarth 500, please launch it tomorrow.

Last edited by sandeepmohan : 10th December 2012 at 14:36.
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Old 10th December 2012, 14:56   #104
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Default Re: Fiat's India strategy revealed. Abarth, Jeep, new Linea & Punto coming. More insi

http://www.topgear.com/india/car-new...year/itemid-50

I find it extremely hard to believe, that Fiat will launch the 500L in 2013. Although the looks are based on 500, the platform is that of Punto, which should make it possible for high localization.

Quote:
If yesterday's announcement of Fiat's big plans for the coming years wasn't enough, we’ve come to learn from reliable sources that Fiat is all set to launch the all-new 500 L MPV next year as well. Though it looks like a bigger version of the cute 500 hatchback, the MPV is actually based on an extended Punto platform.

Last edited by rohanjf : 10th December 2012 at 14:58.
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Old 10th December 2012, 21:18   #105
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I was really hoping to read the word "Panda" here. I am very disappointed.

I am also missing the Alfa male here; even the Mito could be a big hit IMHO...the ARs have a GRILL to KILL for .

On the other hand people, dont flog me for this, I own and drive a FIAT too, but Multijet is old now. It sells, is a cash cow for FIAT, a true "urban legend" but, is an old story now for FIAT enthusiasts in India. Give us new engines as well. Look at engine options for any car under the FIAT stable, on the mother website, and you will see the plethora of engine options they are providing. Are we destined to 1.2/1.3/1.4 and <100HP for eternity or what?

Diesel and petrol is going to cost same, sooner or later. Excise policies are a different story too, but FIAT never sold in great volumes any ways.

Last edited by lapis_lazuli : 10th December 2012 at 21:38.
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