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Old 19th December 2012, 14:42   #31
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

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Originally Posted by dmplog View Post
Absolutely agree with GTO here.

However, contrary to calls for axing Indica / Indigo brands, I feel TML should create altogether a *brand new* car - just like how Hyundai created i10 despite having Santro running alongside and ditto with Swift and Ritz in the same segment. Indica and Indigo are ably supporting the Taxi segment which is bread-and-butter models. So, ideally a new car which looks and feels different (and does not have name which starts from 'Indi' ) needs to be developed and could be sold to personal / private customers that demand better ownership experience and do not want to be associated with Taxi segment.

Is it so difficult to create a new car for a manufacturer which owns JLR?
A lot goes into making a new car, right from concept to actually assembly. I agree that they should get away from that hideous Indi design. It looks dated even if we go back by 5-10 years. I dont know why they have that sick rear tail light design from Nano to Aria. Overall, looking at their business for past 10 years, they have not done much so as to impress a consumer. No wonder M&M has left them way behind in the MUV/SUV segment.
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Old 19th December 2012, 15:56   #32
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

Tata's automobile manufacturing business touches all the segments of the automotive world. They have been gradually increasing their production/assembly lines in Africa and Europe. The reason behind cut-down can be more than what is obvious. One among many reasons is- the large number of workers and their union problem being a real pain for management where they have full potential to make many process robotic and reduce manual intervention, but just can't say good-bye to a big number of production workers. It has to be done gradually. It's not only with the Tata's but many other companies into heavy Industrial manufacturing implementing cost-cutting measures and stalling production for few days a month.
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Old 19th December 2012, 15:59   #33
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

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Originally Posted by eq24 View Post
Their main disadvantage is that they have become complacent
Excellent post, thank you!

I completely agree on the complacency point : First, the only manufacturer who could beat Mahindra UVs in price, space, diesels & abuse-friendly nature. What did Tata do? Hand over the profitable UV segment to Mahindra on a silver platter. The single all-new UV Tata launched since the Safari is the Aria. In the meantime, Mahindra got out the Scorpio, Xylo, Thar, Quanto, XUV500 etc.

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Originally Posted by gops2009 View Post
I recall one of the recent press interviews with Ratan Tata, where he lamented that there were not enough people in Tata Motors who built cars with passion.
The most dispassionate company I know of is Maruti, and the most passionate Fiat. See where it got them!

I'd say it's not "passion for cars" that is required. Rather, it's passion to excel, exceed and do high quality work.

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Originally Posted by srishiva View Post
Three of my friends who own Indica (diesel plus petrol) are moving away from Tata. Too many repairs and car stalling quoted by them.
Tell me about it. I was willing to give Tata a second chance with the Manza, but my family vehemently opposed it after the sloppy Indigo experience. Net result = Tata lost a Manza customer to the Sunny.
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Old 19th December 2012, 16:37   #34
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

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Originally Posted by nkrishnap View Post
Even the Fiat Plant where Vista and Manza is being manufactured is working on one shift and 6 days a week.
This is a bit too much if you ask me. I bet they can meet demand even if they worked a single shift for just one day a week. Sales are so bad for Fiat India that it is better they get rid of inventory. Sad state of affairs.
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Old 19th December 2012, 17:19   #35
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

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Originally Posted by dmplog View Post
Absolutely agree with GTO here.

So, ideally a new car which looks and feels different (and does not have name which starts from 'Indi' ) needs to be developed and could be sold to personal / private customers that demand better ownership experience and do not want to be associated with Taxi segment.
There are Mercedes and BMW taxis around. At lower end there are Swift and Dzire taxis. So such customers should not buy those cars?

Agree that Tata needs to improve to catch the customer's imagination, and they need to develop a totally new car if they want to survive.
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Old 19th December 2012, 17:48   #36
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

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Originally Posted by sandeepmohan View Post
This is a bit too much if you ask me. I bet they can meet demand even if they worked a single shift for just one day a week. Sales are so bad for Fiat India that it is better they get rid of inventory. Sad state of affairs.
With a takt time of 2.2 minutes, just two days is more than sufficient to produce around 400 odd cars. This 400 is more than the factory offtake currently.

But this trend is not only with FIAT, even Toyota too shut its plant in November for half the month in the name of maintenance and exhausting the current stock pile up of Etios and Liva.
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Old 20th December 2012, 00:06   #37
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

Tata should revive the Rover brand and launch a new range of cars designed and engineered in the UK but made in India. The cars should be aimed at Suzuki in India and Honda in Europe.
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Old 20th December 2012, 04:07   #38
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

I had a detailed discussion with a senior man at Con****** Power-train, recently. He is with the automobile development side. Having lived abroad for a long time i was appalled and furious when i returned to see that our Indian auto companies had not made any progress whatsoever (discernible to my views) in the last decade.

I asked him, since all cars are more or less production line assemblies with lot of automation, why is that our car manufacturers play catch up at all times? He specifically named the two Indian companies and said that they pay zilch for testing and developing newer methodologies. In-fact, they do not even have specifications for design and development. They come to them and say that “you know what to do so go ahead”. In addition, they do not pay any research and developmental costs. These companies are paid only if the product goes into assembly line and that too per piece at a later stage.

He then goes on to narrate how companies like Merc, BMW, give them 3-5 years for research and product development on a particular aspect, with specifications, interim goals and what they are actually looking at down the line. They have a budget for this 3-5 year period specifically for this. They are thus assured of funds at all times. They further pay the company once the product is approved as per the contract. They always have their top people in touch with the team and follow developments and contribute to the research.

Thus, these development companies put their best men to work for Merc, BMW, as they are challenging to work, they enjoy the involvement of the company folks and more over they are paid.

When there is some serious pressure from the two Indian companies about how things are not moving, they pull out the men the other projects can do without (obviously not their best men) and try and deliver.

The Indian Government always had a tax write off towards R&D. That means companies could deduct their R&D costs and then pay the tax. All our companies built swanky offices, put their, sorry transferred their worst men (good riddance) they could not or would not fire and sent them to these offices. There ended R&D. This is not make believe. This is what has occurred. To give you an example, a foreman in a Defence R&D establishment was given the post of Quality Control at Mahindra some thirty years ago. He is now one of the top people in the company, probably still dealing with QC for THAR, Bolero or probably has just retired. No wonder we have QC issues with M&M.

Now what can we expect of such approaches! They did not have any competitors for many decades, they had all the country, Gov of India, MoD, buying from them, yet they cannot compete with the foreign automakers?

Why o why? Apathy, lack of interest, no integrity for the products they make. One can go on. Oh! By the way i forgot to mention our national disease ‘chalta hai’ and our national management principle ‘Time takes care of issues, not people’.

God Bless my motherland. Love you MAA! Seriously. Thus, the pain!!!
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Old 23rd December 2012, 22:28   #39
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

i was talking to my friend who works in tata motors, she said that there is going to be drastic change tata motors in coming Six months. they are preparing to be no. 2. they are also going to phase out the non profitable and confusing variants. hope what she said will turn in truth. my friend was very confidant about her words.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 22:50   #40
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

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Originally Posted by Zappo View Post
Do not worry. With the culture that the Tata group has there is also a lot of value attached to emotions and other non tangibles. And no Tata exec worth his salt will talk of pulling the plug on a few things which you may see as obvious as daylight. Remember, Indica was born out of RT's conviction that with rockets marching to moon India should definitely be able to make decent cars. And also, the car can be priced like a M800 and yet have the space of an Amby. Now there is a lot of EQ attached to the Indica brand. SUMO was a brand that paid homage to the immense contributions of Sumant Moolgaonkar. With the change of guard lot of these may be given a heave ho. They may just be waiting for The Time.
I think this is one of the very important points with the TATA group as a whole (not just TML). HAving worked very closely with another (one of the biggest) division of TATA group, I have felt a lot going into the hands of non-tangibles. WIth TML, I feel they come up with great product ideas (read Indica + Nano), but fail to deliver. It is said, " well begun is half done", with TML, its always that the other half is left out. Indica, Manza, Aria, Nano- all were great starts but lost out on the turf. The need a big rejig on their plans, their brand image has a massive EQ attached to it, but EQ doesn't do sales. It's now or never for TML. wish them good luck as even I have an EQ attached to the TATA group.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 23:44   #41
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

Came across this article today, which reports a different story than whats discussed here.

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/...w/17730247.cms
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Old 24th December 2012, 09:44   #42
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

The erstwhile MD had clear cut objectives

1. Rationalise the number of platforms (adding 1 and chopping 2).
2. Resist the tendency to put a product at every small niche. (holds true for CV business too)
3. Revisit the concepts of selling vehicles (his exact words)
4. QC across the chain and at each point

The current head is determined to continue and strengthen the above. In addition, the bosses are now spending more time at the field getting a close cut idea. QC is now fully non-negotiable. Earlier they had a very fatherly approach on this. Vendors are now feeling the heat.

TML will continue to be cost effective but not the cheapest. Bean counters have been asked to chill out for a while. The overtly aggressive focus on cost cutting started around 1998 when TML was hit hard by market collapse. Engineering took a back seat. This approach served them well but they stretched and enlarged the scope far beyond what was prudent.

At this point probably TML is the only company that has, under development, the widest range of models that they propose to bring out in coming years. Competition can always draw at its global portfolio which TML cant. Nano as we see now will be completely revamped. The mini SUV segment is a prime focus and they will be in market sooner than what we expect.

The most far reaching changes have been in shape of manpower. They have identified and brought forward effective people. The CV division always had outstanding people and some of them are now in PV business. In fact a major part of learning is coming from CVBU which is world class in many ways. And the amount of money being earmarked for R&D, product development, engineering and A/S is unprecedented. In mid term we will see a mix of revamped and new products and in long term a completely fresh product line.

Rest assured we have not seen the last of TML yet.

Last edited by drive_factor : 24th December 2012 at 10:03.
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Old 24th December 2012, 10:50   #43
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

Gues, Who heard from us?

http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/bus...64.html#toptag


Looks like Tata has taken up the matter damn seriously.

There are some motivational statements in this article, made by Tata Motors Management.

Nice to see in news. "Tata goes back to drawing board at stalled Pimpri unit"

Let us wait for another one year to see what they make out of it.
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Old 1st February 2013, 22:02   #44
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

Looks like the blokes are sinking somewhat rapidly..
Appears to be one of their worst sales in Jan, year-on-year:-
http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/cnb...no_817090.html

Last edited by Rigid Rotor : 1st February 2013 at 22:08. Reason: syntax
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Old 1st February 2013, 23:23   #45
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Default Re: Tata Motors on an austerity drive. Production cut too

This is what happens in business. If you take a break for a month, the impact would last an year at least. In some cases, you wont be able to regain the lost treasure. Remember the old saying? " A bird in hand is equal to two in bush "

Tata has enough capability to launch VFM products. Only criterion being they need to change the looks of their cars. If they could come up with such a product soon, they will be back in business. if not,..... Tata will be Out of this race like Force india is out of F1.
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