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Old 8th June 2013, 17:05   #31
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Hello GrammarNazi,

Glad that Tata Motors (TM) has taken this initiative. It at least shows that it is willing to change things. Many people have already mentioned the most important things. I am not sure how much time you are going to get with him so it is up to you now to summarize these points in an efficient manner. Here are some points from my side:

New Products: Existing products are not making things better. TM has tried changing current things for that but it has not happened. So I suggest doing away with the current portfolio and bringing in new ones. I am suggesting 2 products, one: a sedan which will compete with the likes of Vento/Verna/City etc. The other one a hatchback which will compete with Swift/Ritz/i20 etc. In the hatchback of course you can have two things – entry level and premium level. I think TM needs at least 2-3 new offerings. Note that these offerings have to be completely new and not a refresh of current models.

After deciding which segment to target, the next step is to take the right steps in coming up with that car. I am not sure how a car is built from scratch but I assume you can start with the DESIGN OF THE CAR – as this is one area where TM cars lose the race against other manufacturers. I am sure JLR is running to their full capacity and it might not be appropriate to load them with further work but a JLR inspired design might bring brownie points to your image. Imagine an advertisement for the car which says: “Designed by JLR engineers” or something like that.

After finalizing the design, the next important points should be: plonking a good engine, and getting interiors right. A complete new design is needed for interiors too – I am sure JLR or any other design studio can help with that. I mention JLR because it is time TM gets some benefit from synergies from acquiring JLR.

Unfortunately the job does not end here. Selling the car is just the beginning – you will have to equip your service centres with proper personnel to endure highest quality of service to customers.
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Old 8th June 2013, 18:04   #32
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Congratulations , you are really lucky to put forward your views right in front of the top boss. Please discuss the following:
1. Newer models to phase out vista , manza , storme and aria, probably a new compact SUV as well to beat Duster / ecosport.
2. The QC issues niggling theie various vehicles.
3. revamp their dealers , The dealerships should be spruced up , i went to test drive the storme last week and showroom's airconditioner was not working , blame was put to blatant powercuts in the city. test drive vehicle took more than 30 minutes to be located and finally when it arrived it had run out of fuel , finally I had to come back without a test drive and was promised a test drive later in the evening , 1 week has passed and i have not got any call from the dealer end.
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Old 8th June 2013, 18:04   #33
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

1.Fire Tata motors marketing team for doing a shoddy job:
-They promoted Tata Nano as the worlds cheapest car instead of promoting it as a novel product. Look at the way Piaggio still successfully sells scotters in India, excellent marketing by them
-Recent Ads of comparing Manza with Amaze is another examples. Why would you compare a Sedan class car with a Sub 4 meter Amaze? Amaze sells in the range of 5-7.67 while Manza is sold in the range of 5.91-8.15 lacs.
-There are many more examples

2.Repositioning of products:
-Indica & Indigo should be available only for fleet buyers
-Vista should be made entry level hatch for consumers
-Make Manza sub 4 meter car and then launch it as an entry level sedan. Stop selling the longer sedan class Manza

3.Quality control & Feedback:
-Focus on quality control and offer better quality interiors. Panel gap issue should be resolved
-Be sensitive to consumer feedback. Everyone has been asking for driver aligned dashboard in Vista. Till date only D90 has it

4.Reliability & Service
-Reliability of parts has been a big issue. Focus on this and solve this through better QC
-Improve service network and offer extensive 5 years warranty on all vehicles to boost consumer confidence

What to do next
1.Minor facelift for entire lineup:
-If launch of new vehicles are a year or two away then it is important for Tata to relaunch existing models like Vista and Manza with minor facelift. You cant wait for new vehicles to create an impact when no one is buying or even considering your vehicle today. Just like Etios, relaunch same vehicles with better interiors, add some more chrome finish and that should be good for a year

-Make ABS with Driver and passenger air bag mandatory across all models and even variants. Even the lowest variant of Nano should come with this. This will definitely be applauded by all consumers, critics and lead to a positive media coverage thereby leading to sales
-Tata can never position itself as a premium brand. Similarly it cannot position itself on service where Maruti is the clear leader. Tata is the most trusted brands, so play to your strengths and focus on building reliable and safe cars

3.Premium hatchback
-With Vista as entry level hatchback for consumers, launch premium hatchback like Jazz
-Load it with modern features

4.Premium sedan
-With Manza as entry level sedan for consumers, launch premium sedan like City or Fiesta
-Load it with modern features

5.Compact SUV
-Tata was the real king of SUVs with Safari. Its time to get back that past glory by launching a compact SUV which will be a hot category for next 5-10 years

-For Gods sake please have distinct design for each vehicle specially rear
-Launch small and light steering wheel instead of big truck ones

7.Driving dynamics
-Focus on driving dynamics which consumers are increasingly looking at today. We dont want to own a car which is good to carry 5, we want a car which is fun to drive and comfortable

8.Pricing for consumer market
Nano: 1.75-2.75 lacs
Vista: 4-5 lacs
Premium hatch: 5.5-7.5 lacs
Manza: 5.75-7.75 lacs
Premium sedan: 6.75-9 lacs
Compact SUV: 6-8 lacs
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Old 8th June 2013, 22:01   #34
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

My two cents. TMIL should concentrate on Commercial Vehicles and Utility Vehicles. They should stop producing passanger cars other than from JLR stable or heavily revised Nano for exports). Their new product pipeline is as dry as Thar desert. The current cars do not cut the mustard any more and have very little hope ( other than Storme) . Most personal car users do not even consider Tata cars.
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Old 8th June 2013, 23:15   #35
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

I have got three suggestions to Tata:

1) Please don't forget to make a point about producing a better quality interiors and better build quality for all Tata cars.

2) They need to prioritize modern and futuristic designs on all their cars if Tata needs to get some big number of customers.

3)There are few points to learn from Hyundai when it comes to providing variants and features as well(If its not rude to mention this point to the MD).
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Old 8th June 2013, 23:31   #36
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

India still does not have a reasonably priced crossover utility vehicle. What I mean is a good Yeti competitor. 4.2 - 4.3 m long, 5 seats, plenty of boot space, a very good alternative to a sedan, a very good daily car. The only option is Duster and despite its inadequacies people are still buying it.
I am talking about the market that the CRVs and RAV4s cater to in the west. A simple crossover, no butch looks, no 4X4s, no offroading etc, but an every day car with reasonable power, priced under 10 lacs.
That market is still wide open. I would really want to ask Tata to build one for this market.
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Old 8th June 2013, 23:47   #37
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

a couple of suggestions from my end.
1) Fire the entire existing set of workers/production managers/QC guys at the plant. The employees believe that their job exists even if they do nothing, this must change and a professional culture must exist. It must be perform or perish, with accountability at all levels. The atrocious quality/fit and finish come from the Hindustan Motor mentality which must change.

2) Launch a exciting product in the sedan segment and the SUV segment ASAP. The sedan must not have a hatchback version and the SUV must not share parts with any existing Tata SUV. Take help of JLR if needed, but get the quality and build right the first time.

3) Bread and butter Indica/Indigo and Nano should be rebranded into a economy/cheaper brand. Reserve to put the Tata T on high end products only.
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Old 9th June 2013, 01:15   #38
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One of the main suggestions I'm going to make is they put in ALL efforts and source Honda's iDtec. Honda has production constraints, and is gonna continue having them even after they start another plant next year. Tata has idle capacity and needs a penicillin ASAP. Why not grow together with Honda? Honda, by selling iDtec engines, in turn gains much needed capital to further diversify in its product portfolio whilst coming up with the new plant.

Why should TATA have to sell its Manza at 6L when plane jane products like Scala get away with MUCH more?
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Old 9th June 2013, 10:09   #39
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Having a good exposure of the inside workings of TML - my 2 cents:-

Clear out the deadwood, and not the people who try to tell the truth, in Q.C. APL & ERC.

Treat your vendors with proper attractive pricing and demand quality thereafter. Get control back on the manufacturing process - vendors should tremble when there is an audit from TML and not shrug it off as they do now.

Quality should be the core issue.

And for God's sake design exiting cars.
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Old 9th June 2013, 14:18   #40
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

The first immediate step they need to take is ensure is to stop the erosion of their shares. If this means more discounts on existing lineup, so be it. We are seeing how companies with much better quality, like Ford, GM, Nissan, Mitshubushi, etc., struggle to capture the market share. Improving the quality is a process and it is not a long term plan, it is actually required in the DNA.

My only suggestion: Make Karl Sym read this thread
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Old 9th June 2013, 21:37   #41
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Despite me being employed with TATA group, neither me nor my family will buy any TATA vehicle. Reasons: lack of quality, old and uninspiring design, attitude of dealerships during service/sales.

My suggestion to TATA for the next car is:
  • Discontinue Vista altogether and develop something fresh from scratch.
  • Improve QC. TATA's next hatch may be its last bet towards improving image and market share.
  • Give 5 years warranty as standard.
  • Leverage design teams from JLR.
  • Find a new USP. Space and Cost is no more USP for TATA vehicles only. Vista is neither cheap nor too spacious when compared with modern hatchbacks from the competition.

Last edited by infotech58 : 9th June 2013 at 21:39.
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Old 9th June 2013, 23:17   #42
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Originally Posted by amit_purohit20 View Post
Its not that Tata didnot try to comeout of the Taxi Image, Tata tried a lot to come out of the Taxi Image by initially not allowing Vista to be registered as Taxi vehicle. Its not that Tata didnot try to launch a new segment, they launched the Tata Aaria. They also launched a new segment -the Tata Nano. Tata also launched the Safari Storme which again I think will not be a major success. Every launch, every strategy went wrong. Why? Because every strategy was either wrong or executed half-heartedly.
For eg:
I do not agree with Infotech58 of discontinuing Vista. I own a Vista and am happy with it. Because I know no other car comes close at that price to being a family car when it comes to space and comfort.

Last edited by GTO : 10th June 2013 at 13:50. Reason: Please quote ONLY the relevant bits of a post. Quoting a full, long post inconveniences our mobile readers.
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Old 9th June 2013, 23:52   #43
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Please just ask them to scrap the whole Indica/Indigo lines already! The look is now very dated and has become extremely boring. TATA is now synonymous with TAXI.

They need something exciting in their stable. And not an overpriced behemoth like the Aria or a tin box like the Manza.

Sorry if I'm being a little too rude here, Tata, but it's been a while since you acquired JLR and you have nothing to show for it in your own brand in your home country.
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Old 9th June 2013, 23:57   #44
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

Originally Posted by GrammarNazi View Post
Hey everyone! I've been given a chance to personally meet the current MD of TATA MOTORS (Mr. Karl Slym) to generally discuss cars & suggest ideas about the next Tata car.

The date & time hasn't yet been given to me, but I'm guessing its gonna be sometime at the end of this month.

Looking for suggestions as to what Tata Motors can do to improve their cars in future...

(Mods : Posted here thinking its the appropriate section, do shift if felt required, Rgds.)
I had been using a Tata Manza for the past 2 and a 1/2 years,and based on that experience let me try to give you my two cents!
The positive aspects

1-The amount of space a Tata manza provides for all the 5 occupants inside the car is unparalleled even in several segments higher which many of us conveniently forget! As far as I'm concerned,the biggest criteria for a comfortable, luxurious travel is space. RETAIN THAT QUALITY IN YOUR NEW CAR PLEASE.

2- I bought the Tata manza over the corolla for a much better steering feel,and i bought it over the Cruze for much better space and a better suspension with better noise insulation regarding suspension noise.

The negative aspects-

1-Tata could have easily provided 195/60 R15 radials as standard, which I have modified in my car,resulting in day and night contrast in ride and handling. DO NOT BE PENNY WISE,POUND FOOLISH!

2-Stop doing these quirky designs,which is evident in my car Manza,appearance from the front and back do not gel together at all. If Tata can come up with something like the prima concept, I dread to think of what is holding you back..i hope the Tata design wing is listening ( oh how I wish they would )

3-Please do take a good look at your japanese and korean competitors for fit and finish of their products which you havn't acheived after all these years despite JLR. please take note of the fact that an 8 lakh rupee maruti dzire has become the highest selling car in India which means the general public is ready to shell out that extra 2 lakhs if you can give them a quality product .

Please make use of your advanced technology acquired from JLR and come out with a product difficult to beat by any standards by quality or by price.

All the opinions expressed here are based upon my personal views and I know that I'm right
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Old 10th June 2013, 00:01   #45
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Default Re: Ideas for the next Tata Car (Ideator)

TATA management please give freedom to your aesthetic Industrial Design Team. Do not force them to make designs which resemble older TATA cars. As someone has rightly said TATA is not a BMW or a MERC to maintain design features common throughout their models.
Learn from Renault they are known to experiment a lot in their designs. I have seen the ugliest and also the best designs in their stable so be ready to experiment.
Give control to decision making in all departments to younger blood so that they can enthuse some fresh thoughts. Get rid of the authority which the older guys enjoy, who make any experimentation a big problem.
Other manufacturers keep the internals same and change the exteriors but TATA does the opposite. Storme came with a new chassis,new modified engine but the same old looks and nothing much as a differeintiator. Learn how Mahindra markets and segments their vehicles. Mahindra thrives on their DNA of making rugged vehicles. Scoprio was a super duper hit but they would not have been able to make XUV5OO a hit if they copied the same age old Scorpio looks. How many years the customer has to take the same old looking models from TATA- Indica,Sumo,Safari all are nearly 20 year old vehicle models. They came out with Vista,Manza and Safari storme and Aaria again which look more or less same as their earlier vehicles. This needs a complete stop at any cost.
Come out with a strong reliable, excellent fit finish product and with a different brand. Brand makeover is require.Tata lost a great deal of image in the automotive sector.
Imagine the daring of my colleagues who roam in an Alto(a cheaper car compared to my Vista) but have the guts to tell me that why did I select a cheap car. This is all the negative image what TATA carries now. Dont fall in the trap of selling a cheaper car. Instead concentrate on saving money by removing the unnecessary weight of components in the car. Make them lighter.
TATA can not sell cars to an advantage in future if:
1)Quality,Fit Finish,Reliablity,Aesthetic Design-external and internal are improved by leaps and bounds.
2) A new Brand name supported with a strong product and a properly executed strategy till the end is required. If TATA does this again with half-heartedness it will again be a big big failure
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