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Old 14th April 2014, 14:36   #61
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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I was among the guinea pigs when Indica V2 was launched. I was in the US, wanted to buy the family in India a car. TI was not earning well but the Ambassador was aging, the family needed a car and I had only limited money. The Indica was a good choice. Three days after the car got delivered, the AC knob broke. When we asked the service center for a new knob, we were told that we had to replace the entire fascia. Two days later, the front passenger handle (right above the door) broke. 1 week later, the wiper started squeaking. 6 months on, one headlight became opaque. Now remember, I pretty much slogged like crazy, saved up some dollars and got this car as a present for my family. I was driving a 88 Camry at that point. Imagine my horror, when I call home every weekend and I get reports of something or another breaking. The nearest service center was 75kms away. So, we lived with it.

Now, tell me. This was a moment of pride to show everyone that we have had some success in life. That's what a car stands for in most Indian households. It's a status symbol, an object of pride and affection that continues to be even today. When people got into the car for a ride in the first week, you could see the quiet amusement in some people's faces, I'd believe.

Now tell me that I should still admire a brand that completely let me down, took my hard earned money and sold a shoddy product. Tell me that I should admire a company where I should beg, yes, literally beg, Tata for a solution to the headlights which never came. Tell me I should admire a company where the act of acknowledgement was itself by the mercy of a guy in overalls and not by anyone else.

I can go on about the Fiat experience which Tata delivered in Bangalore of all places but I won't go there. Because, it just escapes words.

So, now you have it. I'd drop kick Tata cars over a cliff in an instant. I've stopped caring. They want me? They can go ahead and make a product that won't embarass me in front of my family and friends. Yes, that's a vague requirement. But, that's all I'll give them. Yes, my experience maybe unique. But nevertheless, its my experience and I am not going to change my mind. Call me a part of a herd. Yes, because that's how much all of us in the herd have been insulted and degraded. T

hird class car builders with a slimy dealership and service network. That's exactly how I'll describe them.
No offense Sir, but since you have gone OT and have shared your personal view in a thread related to some other topic(remember the thread is about - Mr Cyrus Mistry- looks to turn around TM) and since you have shared your personal bad experience with a TATA car from a previous generation, i would like to reiterate my personal experience also here .
Please go through my post # 28 wherein i have tried to do a short comparo of my personal experience with an ALTO , A swift and the Manza.

Now when i read your post about specific things failing in your Indica v2, i suddenly recalled the embarrassments which the swift used to give me when i used to carry friends/ relatives in that car due to inumerous rattles and extremely cramped back seat.
I suddenly remembered the silly fuses that use to blow off without any reason in the ALTo(bare basic - no frills whatsoever , still the fuses - headlights - wipers etc went kaput ). I remember how once i had to cancel a dinner meeting with relatives as a fuse of the Alto was blown due to which the wiper went on continuously on without i able to switch it off (during summer time)
If i get down to penning all the -ves of the Alto and swift ownership i will end up composing a long post.
But still i was happy with overall ownership of those 2 cars.
But i am happier with ownership of the MANZA.

The point is , i personally feel that ALL cars be it the bare basic ALTO or the best seller SWIFTgives you some or the other bother / embarrassments, they go unnoticed with MARUTI / HYUNDAI , but dare my MANZA have even a flat tire, so do i start complaining about the quality?
being a little bit informed teambhpian - i wont and i shouldnt.

There is a huge leap of difference between a Manza or an Indica v2 which already means that TATA's are improving at a decent pace and this thread again was meant to revolve around this and steps that
Mr Cyrus Mistry might be looking at to turn things around to enable this pace of improvement to be more faster/ more better.

Anyways , i don't know why i am advocating the Tatas here. May be a little hurt due to undeserved bashing going around whereas they have already improved a lot and LOOKING TO FURTHER IMPROVE BY TURNING AROUND SOME THINGS .

This was the main topic of the thread (i think)

teambhp.com already has a dedicated thread somewhere to write about the always so failing Tata cars (some time back i remember going through that title)

Last edited by madhu33 : 14th April 2014 at 14:39.
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Old 14th April 2014, 16:12   #62
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

Wow, the reactions in the thread point to one thing for me - How much all of us want to see Tata succeed!

I hope they do get it right this time around...they need both a short term strategy to bring customers back into showrooms and a longer term strategy to ensure that customers stay within the fold

Short Term Strategy - I guess this is the Bolt/Zest, which I hope will deliver on the promise of a relatively good looking, robust product at good price.

Long Term Strategy - I think this is where the max confusion is - A couple of months back we had heard of a modular architecture being designed, which will underpin most future vehicles - However, no mention of that in the article.

What Cyrus Mistry probably needs to do is take a leaf out of the same rule book that Tata Motors uses to deal with JLR - put a world class management team in place, give them the authority to turn around and put the company on a sustainable growth path, while Tata group as such can provide the required capital / guidance.

I believe this is very much the need of the hour to break the culture of complacency that's visible today (case in point - just look at TaMo's website and compare it to Maruti or Hyundai)

Last edited by prashanthyr : 14th April 2014 at 16:13. Reason: typo
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Old 14th April 2014, 17:04   #63
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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Originally Posted by gemi_kk View Post

Yeah.. rebadged Indica and indigo. with different headlights and different bumper. with some side lines on doors and boot.
Going by your logic, the current swift is also rebadged old swift with different headlights and different bumper, with some side lines on doors and boot.

But still, people will call it all new swift and will still buy it. no matter how weak is the sheet metal quality and rattles. common man cant easily differentiate old swift and new swift

but in case with Bolt, yes the shape resembles vista, but tata has taken some serious efforts to look different from vista and yes it looks different than vista.
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Old 14th April 2014, 17:25   #64
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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There is a huge leap of difference between a Manza or an Indica v2 which already means that TATA's are improving at a decent pace and this thread again was meant to revolve around this and steps that
Mr Cyrus Mistry might be looking at to turn things around to enable this pace of improvement to be more faster/ more better.

)
The leap in difference was so huge, that even cabbies who swore by the Indica and Indigo shifted forte to other brands. Thats the hard truth. If what Tata did with the Vista and Manza was so commendable, this thread, or any thread bashing TML woudnt have existed. Yes the cars are sturdy and so called rattle free. But is the thickness of sheet metal the trump card for any car to do well? I dont think so. I will get more embarassed if the door handle of my car fell down on the way(this happened with me when travelling in my uncles Manza) compared to having a rattling car. Yes my maruti rattles, but no one in the car even bothers. They blame the poor state of roads for the noise and not the car. Thats how the majority of car buyers think


Someone said that they need a car guy to be the CEO. I second that point. A managerial person will focus upon an overal aspect and forget the details. Compare the switchgear of the current vista with the swift, i20 etc. Thats where the difference lies. A car guy will definitely go into the grass roots and get things right from the bottom without looking at the overall features or brand image. Instead of opening N number of dealerships, let them focus on a limited number of dealers who can really attract customers, again speaking from a series of horrible experiences at Concorde and Prerana Motors. The salesmen were enjoying the cool AC room while the cars were left outside, and just anyone could go and check what these cars offered and they mever bothered. Only upon asking for a brochure, we were given one. So I dont regard any of that as an improvement.

They need an enthusiastic and technical based CEO at the earliest.
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Old 14th April 2014, 18:16   #65
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

The herd has gathered around tata motors, i am afraid. It is the market-informational equivalent of a lynch mob. The herd will not give up till it destroys ('kills'), no matter the improvements tata already has and will continue making, no matter the appallingly bad deals the herd gets from certain 'reliable' East Asian brands with allegedly awesome ASS, not to mention 'cutting-edge' engineering and design.
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Old 14th April 2014, 20:17   #66
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

To be honest, I feel we should lock this thread till Bolt launches and then take into account whether TATA has done something special as they promised and as per our (customer) expectations.

Till then those who believe TATA will NOT do anything better will continue to believe so and those who believe TATA will do something better will continue to believe that way. The ONLY output will be a longer thread and some (unwanted) server space usage.
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Old 14th April 2014, 21:10   #67
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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To be honest, I feel we should lock this thread till Bolt launches and then take into account whether TATA has done something special as they promised and as per our (customer) expectations.

Till then those who believe TATA will NOT do anything better will continue to believe so and those who believe TATA will do something better will continue to believe that way. The ONLY output will be a longer thread and some (unwanted) server space usage.
Bolt and Zest could be segment leading products no doubt. They could offer better space than Amaze and better features than Xcent.

Well, over and above products like Zest and Bolt, Customer experience at point of sale and point of service(A.S.S) should be warm and pleasant.

They could/should at the very least copy Mahindra and Mahindra and start a similar purple club. Leverage TCS maybe to recruit some BBA gradutates who have a passion for cars and also are good at communication and customer handling. I dont see any step in that direction. I say this because no such purple club / dedicated person is available for the flagship Aria. Logically i dont see them offering bolt/zest with any special service.

I as a customer will buy a product if there is at least a customer service team who will listen to my complaint and successfully (not tactically) resolve it. (aka Whirlpool for appliances) . I am a prospective customer and this is my humble VOC (voice of customer)
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Old 14th April 2014, 21:44   #68
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

Tata is trying a massive campaign on the new technology which they are incorporating in Zest. In fact, they are going to do a complete advertisement of the Revotron engine before that of the actual car.

They sure want to make sure that consumer expect no less that the best from Tata Motors this time, which IMHO is a tall order. But its nice that they are at least trying to get out of their comfort zone.

TM will advertise the turbo petrol, sport mode, etc. in the communication, however that may take some time.

My concern is that players like VW already have these tech, so Tata may educate the market but the educated junta might prefer a more global name for latest tech rather than a player which is not actually known for providing break through technological innovation.

Whatever be the case, I have not seen Tata Motors bet so much on may product in the recent past. The efforts they are taking is surely a great start, whatever be the final result of their efforts.
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Old 16th April 2014, 11:55   #69
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

Sorry, I believe Tata will make a mark for itself with the ZEST and BOLT. Tata needed 2 things, quality and new innovation and that is exactly what these 2 products shout out. I have never seen a Tata car have a waiting period in 10 years ( correct me if i am wrong), but this will change with the Zest !
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Old 16th April 2014, 12:25   #70
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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Sorry, I believe Tata will make a mark for itself with the ZEST and BOLT. Tata needed 2 things, quality and new innovation and that is exactly what these 2 products shout out. I have never seen a Tata car have a waiting period in 10 years ( correct me if i am wrong), but this will change with the Zest !
Tata needs more than 2 things -quality and innovation. It needs to improve customer service and post sales support by reining in dealers. It also needs to improve the pre-sales experience.

Besides, they need to price their products rightly. Price, quality, design refinement and customer services will all need to be right if they wish to push Zest and Bolt to match segment leaders.

As of today, you will have a lot of 'reluctant buyers' who would be interested in taking up Zest if all the factors are in place. Remains to be seen how Tata Motors would induce these 'reluctant buyers' to become 'buyers'.
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Old 16th April 2014, 12:48   #71
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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A fairly long report in ET talks about how Mistry is actively involved in shaping Tata Motors future after Karl Slym's death. He is reported to be betting heavily on the upcoming Bolt and Zest. The search for Slym's successor intensifies even as Mistry is revamping the top management set up.
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/...w/33523335.cms
Can it even get more gibberish than this.
"Think out of the box".
"Sharper meetings"
"Strategy team".
What are they running? MBA school or something?

Frankly speaking, this article just looks like an article for the sake of the article. All full of buzzwords and no substance.

And people are getting fooled that anything will change.

I mean look at Tata
1. The first Indian company to create the luxury SUV segment at an affordable price. It created an entire segment for Mahindra
2. The first Indian company to create a people mover at good price. Again, gifted this segment to Mahindra
3. The first Indian company to create the "Economy diesel hatch". Heck, the first company in India which showed us that a hatchback need not be an iron maiden. Gifted the segment to Hyundai and Maruti

The old Tata Motors atleast had vision to create segments.

Now even that is gone.

Where is the Safari Roadmap. Toyota comes and sells a glorified pickup truck and actually beats Tata hollow.

Competitors make smaller cars at a higher price, and outsell Tata.

And is the problem really that insurmountable?
Tata owns JLR. That gives Tata access to technology which a company like Maruti can only dream to have.

Does Tata leverage that tech? Heck no way. Who cares.

And the less said about their execution the better. Tata is the first company(or among the first) in India to create a nation wide vehicle service tracker system. Every component failure is in their database.

Did Tata do a complete analysis of why cars were coming again and again to the ASS and fix the blame?
Its easy. If a component is failing in 10% of the cars, take the designer or the person incharge to task.

All the things are in place. Yet Tata does not believe in execution. Even the old vision of new segments is lost. I guess there is no morale.

The designer dreams of a concept and the engineering makes a juggad out of that concept cutting corners here and there. Now even the designers seem to have run away.

If Tata wants to turnaround, it should stop with this buzzword methodology, and get the hands dirty.

First step
Identify all problematic areas. For example, if power steering is failing in a high number of cars - Fix that. Ditto for injectors, fuel pump, alternators etc., Make sure the next car does not reuse those components
Real world example -
Tata Aria. A high percentage of Aria's have alignment issues due to one simple nut not being of the right spec. Its replicated in the the Storme. Why?

Second step
Long term roadmap.
where is the long term roadmap. Mahindra did not have one after XUV. They bought Rexton to fill the 17L spot and future SUVs. Tata bought JLR and sat on it. JLR has vehicles like defender which have a huge brand presence in the market. Leverage that to fill the 15L-20L gap above the Safari

Real world example
The fiasco called storme. 900 units/month. New wine in new bottle which looks worse than old bottle. Too little too late. The Storme could have been the vehicle to have. I mean, you look and the front, and go wow. Then you go to the rear and go

So where was the problem? No passion, as Mr. Ratan Tata once remarked. Idea was born, to make a better safari, and then execution - poof

Third step -
Passion

Marketing and product design has to be handed over to people who actually love cars. People who understand cars. And that is missing. Mahindra atleast attempts top show passion by their expedition campaigns. Heck a jugaad like Thar sells similar to the Safari. No ABS, no airbags, no power windows, 1980 body and dashboard, poor seating position.... and it sells so much.
Tata did a me too through their
Explore series.
It flopped due to nobody at helm. then their created some trail driving thingy. Did few events, then fizzz
Now it wants to do Soul.

Safari has such a dedicated fan following that a criticism of this vehicle draws a lynch mob, yet Tata cannot capitalize on that. What does it have to say about their incompetence?

If Tata wants a turnaround, it needs to take their existing portfolio and revamp it.
You cannot pick and choose. For example, for 2 years it was all about zest and Bolt, and everything else was ignored.
Who works like this.

Now they will ignore hatch and sedan and go to SUV?

You have to manage everything. you cannot do one product at a time. Do all.

For example. Sumo. Such a lovely platform. And such a cheap platform. What can not be done with it?
It can be the one stop expedition vehicle.
Some quality issues need to be sorted, and underpinnings improved, and they can eat the Scorpio market.

Make the product so good that you offer a 5 year warranty. People will come back to Tata again.

Right now many feel Tata makes junk which lasts 2 years - The duration of the warranty. Give 5 year warranty standard. This is the only way market will trust you again.

But no. Tata is not going to do that. Instead its going to make core teams, A teams, B teams and move people around, while morale keeps going down, development slows to a trickle, after sales service keeps ruining cars, and Mr Mistry keeps doing short and sharp meetings and thinking out of the box. and guess what Mahindra and Maruti will run away with all the boxes

Last edited by tsk1979 : 16th April 2014 at 12:52.
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Old 16th April 2014, 13:04   #72
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

Superb post TSK. In one line, "A summary of the whole 5 page thread.".

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If Tata wants to turnaround, it should stop with this buzzword methodology, and get the hands dirty.
Loved this point
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Old 16th April 2014, 15:13   #73
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Real world example -
Tata Aria. A high percentage of Aria's have alignment issues due to one simple nut not being of the right spec. Its replicated in the the Storme. Why?

Second step
Long term roadmap.
where is the long term roadmap. Mahindra did not have one after XUV. They bought Rexton to fill the 17L spot and future SUVs. Tata bought JLR and sat on it. JLR has vehicles like defender which have a huge brand presence in the market. Leverage that to fill the 15L-20L gap above the Safari


For example. Sumo. Such a lovely platform. And such a cheap platform. What can not be done with it?
It can be the one stop expedition vehicle.
Some quality issues need to be sorted, and underpinnings improved, and they can eat the Scorpio market.

Make the product so good that you offer a 5 year warranty. People will come back to Tata again.

Right now many feel Tata makes junk which lasts 2 years - The duration of the warranty. Give 5 year warranty standard. This is the only way market will trust you again.
Extremely well analysed!
Some of the points raised by you really shock me. Eg. the Aria alignment issue.

I couldn't agree more on that 15 to 20 lac spot. There will be big pickings for the first one with a credible and attractive product.

Again - about the Sumo - you are so right! It is a great platform - I should know - I used one for years.
But... the question is will they? Your conclusion though pretty dark seems to be unfortunately the right one. I just hope they prove otherwise.

Last edited by wilful : 16th April 2014 at 15:34.
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Old 16th April 2014, 18:24   #74
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

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Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
If Tata wants a turnaround, it needs to take their existing portfolio and revamp it.
You cannot pick and choose. For example, for 2 years it was all about zest and Bolt, and everything else was ignored.
Who works like this.

Now they will ignore hatch and sedan and go to SUV?

You have to manage everything. you cannot do one product at a time. Do all.
They seem to have found a new way to dig their grave - tie up with a Chinese car company (Chery) and bring their phased out models to India!
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Old 16th April 2014, 20:24   #75
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Default Re: Cyrus Mistry looks to turn around Tata Motors

One thing Tata needs to understand real quick is that the dealership experience matters even more when you're in the dumps.

Recently, my father was looking to change his car & we were test driving a spectrum of cars from all the manufacturers. Just on a whim, we went to check out the Tata Aria at a local dealership (the only one in my town). Well, we went in & the dealership was shabby. (I mean, paint peeling off, the AC turned off, the sagging false ceiling. It really looked like some fly-by-night dealership & not of a major manufacturer). While the SA was helpful, the experience just didn't inspire confidence.

Call me vain, but I do feel that when a potential customer is thinking of spending 10-14 lackhs on your product, your premises also needs to reflect that of a serious enterprise wanting that business.

The best showroom experience was had at Honda & Hyundai. Heck, even Fiat was a far better experience. Tata needs to seriously look into project an image of a confident brand rather than exhibit the aura of a government office.
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