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Old 10th March 2014, 11:15   #1
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Default Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

In a latest move to enhance customer service levels at Fiat India, the company has decided to ensure that each dealer should have adequate stock of spare parts for more efficient customer service.

Mr. Nagesh Basavanhalli (President & Managing Director) of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles India has said that the move ensures that each dealership stocks around 300 fast moving spare parts that are required for servicing Fiat cars in India.

The company hopes to meet around 75-80 percent of service requirements with this move.

However, parts which are not included in fast moving category can always be sourced from the company's spare parts warehouse in Chakan, near pune which is also the largest in Asia-Pacific region.

The company also plans to increase its dealerships from the present 108 to 500 dealerships by December 2014.

Source & Link:

http://www.autocarindia.com/auto-new...ps-374477.aspx
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Old 10th March 2014, 11:56   #2
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Red face re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

It was high time Fiat took this step as until now they were on the spree of increasing the dealership/workshop with no direct emphasis on spares inventory. With new models being launched/in the process of being launched spares stocking will be critical to Fiat's growth.

During the last interaction with Fiat mgmt at one of the meets, it was disclosed that spares inventory is mainly the dealer prerogative and dealers were hesitant to increase their spares stock due to high inventory costs. I hope Fiat must have resolved this predicament.
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Old 10th March 2014, 12:14   #3
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Default re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Another way to look at this:

1. A high inventory at dealers is detrimental to dealer health, he will try to squeeze out profits from customers.

2. A high inventory at dealers helps Fiat show higher 'profits', its called dealer stuffing.

3. If Flipkart can deliver in a day to all major metros in India in a day, why cant Fiat from its Chakan warehouse?

All manufacturers should take responsibility to help dealer make their profits from regular service / sales than load them up.

/Surya
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Old 10th March 2014, 13:13   #4
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Default re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Quote:
Originally Posted by mints21 View Post
In a latest move to enhance customer service levels at Fiat India, the company has decided to ensure that each dealer should have adequate stock of spare parts for more efficient customer service.

The company also plans to increase its dealerships from the present 108 to 500 dealerships by December 2014.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
It was high time Fiat took this step as until now they were on the spree of increasing the dealership/workshop with no direct emphasis on spares inventory. With new models being launched/in the process of being launched spares stocking will be critical to Fiat's growth.

During the last interaction with Fiat mgmt at one of the meets, it was disclosed that spares inventory is mainly the dealer prerogative and dealers were hesitant to increase their spares stock due to high inventory costs. I hope Fiat must have resolved this predicament.
As far as Fiat is concerned, the situation can only get better as they have already hit rock bottom. Sincerely hope this step from the company goes a long way to increase the customer satisfaction level and restores some confidence about the company in the market. This is a very common management function prevalent everywhere and it is ironical that a company like Fiat could understand the importance so late.

They could barely manage 108 in one full year and another 400 dealers in nine months is impossible. Fiat should show some discretion in awarding dealership because ultimately that is the face of the company.

Ghodlur, does it mean that Fiat is not charging in advance for the spares anymore. Other wise the dealers won't readily block their capital by stocking inventory.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gsurya View Post
If Flipkart can deliver in a day to all major metros in India in a day, why cant Fiat from its Chakan warehouse?

All manufacturers should take responsibility to help dealer make their profits from regular service / sales than load them up.
Automobile companies don't despatch their inventory the way Flipkart does i.e. through reputed couriers. Auto spares are generally very volunious and are normally despatched through the carriers that transport the cars to different locations.

Last edited by Sommos : 10th March 2014 at 13:16.
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Old 10th March 2014, 13:20   #5
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Red face re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

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Originally Posted by Sommos View Post
does it mean that Fiat is not charging in advance for the spares anymore. Other wise the dealers won't readily block their capital by stocking inventory.
Was the case anytime at all? AFAIK dealer used to place an order for the spare from Fiat only when it is confirmed to be required and not available in the inventory. The sad part is the dealer wouldnt even stock spares costing upto 1k too with them. Most of the fast moving spares are in the range of 10K or less. Fiat wants to improve this section so that servicing/repair is not delayed due to non availability of the stock with the dealer.

When I had requisitioned a rear fender liner at the Fiat dealer, I was told that they dont stock non fast moving goods. The liner costed around 500 rupees and wasnt available with the dealer. It took the dealer a complete week to procure it from Fiat, Pune.
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Old 10th March 2014, 13:54   #6
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Default re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

The title should read 'Spare parts availability'. After a casual look at the thread title it looked to me as if Fiat increased the cost of spare parts.
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Old 10th March 2014, 13:57   #7
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Default re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

While this is a good move and a welcome one from the Italian company, I would still wait for the outcome. As they say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating! Feedback from Fiat owners on Team-BHP (about spare part availability from now on) would let us know if this is working the way it is meant to.

They may be at the bottom of the sales charts now, but Fiat is a company that is improving every month, albeit very slowly and steadily. Since all new products are nowhere on the horizon (Avventura is basically a heavily modified Grande Punto, 500 used to be on sale earlier in non-Abarth guise and the others are facelifts/upgrades), Fiat must do all they can to work on the ownership experience and retain the trust of Fiat lovers who have been with the company through thick and thin.

Let's face it, the ordinary car buying public are not going to rush to Fiat showrooms in droves to buy the Avventura, the Abarth versions or even the well executed facelifts of the two existing cars. So the company must work on meeting and exceeding the expectations of Fiat lovers. Once this has been achieved, and the positive word-of-mouth recommendations spread around, the time would be ripe (next year?) for the introduction of all new products which can attract completely new buyers to the brand.
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Old 10th March 2014, 14:12   #8
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Default re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
...Fiat wants to improve this section so that servicing/repair is not delayed due to non availability of the stock with the dealer.
With this step, FIAT is addressing an age old concern of both current and future customers- unavailability of spares. Even these days, there are people who will not buy a LINEA due to "perceived" servicing issues and lack of spares.
This step is surely for the better. Slowly and steadily, FIAT is making sure that all things are in place by the time new models are launched.

From the article:
Quote:
...The company is looking to expand its dealerships to 500 by December this year.
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Old 10th March 2014, 14:25   #9
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Default re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Was the case anytime at all? AFAIK dealer used to place an order for the spare from Fiat only when it is confirmed to be required and not available in the inventory. The sad part is the dealer wouldnt even stock spares costing upto 1k too with them. Most of the fast moving spares are in the range of 10K or less. Fiat wants to improve this section so that servicing/repair is not delayed due to non availability of the stock with the dealer.

When I had requisitioned a rear fender liner at the Fiat dealer, I was told that they dont stock non fast moving goods. The liner costed around 500 rupees and wasnt available with the dealer. It took the dealer a complete week to procure it from Fiat, Pune.
Certainly not, Sir. That maybe the case (to a large extent) in the JV period, though I have only endured only six months at TATA dealership. But the independent dealers do stock inventory. I had to wait a month for the left side ORVM but twice the left side headlamp (which is much costlier) was replaced immediately. No businessman would like to block his working capital on slow moving inventory. The dealers have to pay for the parts to the company before they are despatched from the factory and that is a major cause for delay.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RSR View Post
While this is a good move and a welcome one from the Italian company, I would still wait for the outcome. As they say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating! Feedback from Fiat owners on Team-BHP (about spare part availability from now on) would let us know if this is working the way it is meant to.

So the company must work on meeting and exceeding the expectations of Fiat lovers. Once this has been achieved, and the positive word-of-mouth recommendations spread around, the time would be ripe (next year?) for the introduction of all new products which can attract completely new buyers to the brand.
You've stated it very rightly, and this is where the role of the dealers play a major part. As a competent and honest dealer would go a long way in establishing the customer confidence a incompetent and unscrupulous dealer would spoil the image of the company. Fiat has already done this mistake in the past and I hope they show some degree of maturity and carefulness in appointing the new dealers.
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Old 10th March 2014, 14:45   #10
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Red face re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sommos View Post
The dealers have to pay for the parts to the company before they are despatched from the factory and that is a major cause for delay.
I wouldnt agree to this. This cannot be the case when warranty claims are handled. In that case why would dealer pay before hand to get the spares and then get reimbursed. IMO the stock inventory of Fiat dealers is not uniform. For eg. Dealers in Pune wouldnt stock all the spares since sourcing from Fiat plant would be much more faster than a dealer in Bangalore or Chennai. But Fiat is aiming is to have atleast the regular spares like for eg in your case OVRM at min stock at the workshops.

Earlier in the JV, Fiat didnt have a major say in the spares stocking as the premises was shared with Tata stocking its own spares. But now since Fiat has gone solo it can enforce the dealers to maintain a healthy inventory. The reason for this move from Fiat is basically due to the feedback recd from the customers. Open Fiat FB page and most of the rants are non availability of spares.
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Old 10th March 2014, 15:17   #11
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Default Re: Fiat Group increasing spare parts in all its dealerships across India

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Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
I wouldnt agree to this. This cannot be the case when warranty claims are handled. In that case why would dealer pay before hand to get the spares and then get reimbursed. IMO the stock inventory of Fiat dealers is not uniform. For eg. Dealers in Pune wouldnt stock all the spares since sourcing from Fiat plant would be much more faster than a dealer in Bangalore or Chennai. But Fiat is aiming is to have atleast the regular spares like for eg in your case OVRM at min stock at the workshops.

Earlier in the JV, Fiat didnt have a major say in the spares stocking as the premises was shared with Tata stocking its own spares. But now since Fiat has gone solo it can enforce the dealers to maintain a healthy inventory. The reason for this move from Fiat is basically due to the feedback recd from the customers. Open Fiat FB page and most of the rants are non availability of spares.
OK, so you mean to say that in case of replacement under warranty, the parts are despatched from the factory to the dealer and then the same is replaced in the customer's car. Even if the same part is readily available with the dealer? Well I think the system works in a different manner.

I would certainly like to know how Fiat can enforce the dealers to maintain a certain level of inventory. This is possible only if the ownership of the inventory is with Fiat and not the dealers. Till the company don't ask for money from the dealers, I don't think the dealers would mind a huge inventory at their disposal. The moment the part is invoiced, Fiat gets the money and the dealer his commission. The moment the company asks for money against the inventory, the dealer would want to know his ROI.
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Old 10th March 2014, 22:25   #12
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Default Re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Going from 108 to 500 dealers is VERY dangerous IMHO. Remember that Fiat sells ~2k units a month, and let's assume even if that number doubles, it'd mean just average of 8 cars per dealer per month.

Obviously some dealers will perform extraordinarily while many dealers will not be able to break-even. If the bottom 30% decide to pull down shutters, the image of Fiat will take quite a beating. People will be reminded of its earlier Fiat Uno days, and consumer confidence will start to crumble.

Eventually the eroded brand would continue to fetch the low resale value and the consumer wouldn't dare touch their brands again!

Whatsay?

Last edited by GrammarNazi : 10th March 2014 at 22:43.
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Old 10th March 2014, 23:41   #13
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Default Re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

As a customer of Fiat for the past 18 months and 13 warranty claims later, I have seen a sea change in service standards. The dealers are somewhat OK, but atleast the manufacturer goes to ensure that issues are resolved. Still, what is required is
-reduction in spare part prices for palio stile. Their body panels are horribly overpriced.
-QC at plant level. Still more tightening up required.
Parts for routine service are easily available, and both oberoi and kashyap do have some palio parts also. If not, within a week, they are available.
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Old 10th March 2014, 23:52   #14
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Default Re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Quote:
Originally Posted by gsurya View Post
Another way to look at this:

3. If Flipkart can deliver in a day to all major metros in India in a day, why cant Fiat from its Chakan warehouse?

/Surya
Flipkart business model is different. It has distributed model where it has tieups with respective dealers in the region.

Here there is only 1 source. And as it involves mechanical parts it might take some extra care. Hence the delay.

I believe it is true with all manufacturers , Even at Maruti out of stock product requires min 5days to source them.
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Old 11th March 2014, 07:42   #15
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Default Re: Fiat increasing spare part availability in all its dealerships

Since lead time is critical, I wonder why the only central warehouse is in the north. No love for southern customers?
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