Go Back   Team-BHP > BHP India > The Indian Car Scene


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 3rd January 2015, 18:42   #16
BHPian
 
nakul0888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: kochi
Posts: 347
Thanked: 804 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Why just stop at hatchbacks? What about a simple two seat sports car for under 15 lakhs like a Mazda mx-5 or a Honda s2000. Light weight, reasonably economical, high revving petrol, slick manual gearbox, rear wheel drive, independent suspension, simple and tough mechanicals and not much equipment to go kaput and make it expensive.
If you ask me the engine part is already available- the 1.5 ivtec, just need someone to build the rest of it.
nakul0888 is offline   (7) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 19:20   #17
BHPian
 
d_himan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Bombay
Posts: 709
Thanked: 559 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
I have never been much into these hot hatches. I never understood what the fun of cramming a powerful engine in what is essentially a small ass car. You might go fast, but you re still cramped as hell.

Anyway, we are on our annual home visit back to the Netherlands and my eldest son has just bought a 2005 Volkswagen Golf GTI. It's also chipped and God knows what they did to the suspension, because it has none.

So these hot hatches can certainly be a blast to drive, not sure I would want one as a daily drive. At least you want some more comfort, at least I do.

Jeroen
Well, parking in a city like Mumbai is a good reason. I downsized from an Accord to a GT 1.2 Tsi since I found parking to be way too cumbersome and time-wasting. Also, you miss the nimbleness that can be had in a hatch darting around in traffic...the 30-80 kmph is just so much fun. The newer Golf GTI/Fiesta ST don't have the crashy suspension of yore I'm told.

My budget was 20 lacs+. I bought the best performance hatch that can be had in the country - would not have minded plonking double the money I spent on the 1.2 tsi for double the power.

That said, I don't think anyone's going to give 180-200 bhp for 12 lacs...good engine = good electronics = high level of standard equipment = high price..
d_himan is offline   (11) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 19:23   #18
Senior - BHPian
 
1100D's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Calcutta
Posts: 4,163
Thanked: 2,299 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by nakul0888 View Post
Why just stop at hatchbacks? What about a simple two seat sports car for under 15 lakhs like a Mazda mx-5 or a Honda s2000. Light weight, reasonably economical, high revving petrol, slick manual gearbox, rear wheel drive, independent suspension, simple and tough mechanicals and not much equipment to go kaput and make it expensive.
If you ask me the engine part is already available- the 1.5 ivtec, just need someone to build the rest of it.
I so agree with you, infact you forgot to add the Toyota GT86. But then given the low volumes these things would generate, the manufacturers would go the CBU route that would push up the prices. Then they would infer that performance cars do not work in India.

Now since these companies have deep pockets, one simple suggestion to them would be to offer these, for a limited period/limited numbers, absorbing the additional cost due to CBU taxation and then observe if people are buying these cars at those pricepoints.

Anyways, looking forward to the Abarth Punto, they said they will price it under 10.
1100D is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 21:09   #19
Senior - BHPian
 
DicKy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Thiruvanthapuram
Posts: 1,434
Thanked: 593 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by nakul0888 View Post
Why just stop at hatchbacks? What about a simple two seat sports car for under 15 lakhs like a Mazda mx-5 or a Honda s2000. Light weight, reasonably economical, high revving petrol, slick manual gearbox, rear wheel drive, independent suspension, simple and tough mechanicals and not much equipment to go kaput and make it expensive.
If you ask me the engine part is already available- the 1.5 ivtec, just need someone to build the rest of it.
Thats a dream that we Indians can only have, but not dare think of becoming a reality. Except for the bunch of imports in metro cities, can't even dream of such a car in India.

Excuse the Chinkaras and San Storms, would just love to have a cheaper Miata in India, but then. Hatchbacks are way more practical than coupes/roadsters even globally.
Only thing lacking would be wrong wheel drive( not that its a problem nowadays)



Quote:
Originally Posted by 1100D View Post
I so agree with you, infact you forgot to add the Toyota GT86. But then given the low volumes these things would generate, the manufacturers would go the CBU route that would push up the prices. Then they would infer that performance cars do not work in India.

Now since these companies have deep pockets, one simple suggestion to them would be to offer these, for a limited period/limited numbers, absorbing the additional cost due to CBU taxation and then observe if people are buying these cars at those pricepoints.

Anyways, looking forward to the Abarth Punto, they said they will price it under 10.
Aah. the 86.

Thats a valid suggestion, instead of crying over the chicken egg situation of demand->supply->CBU->manufacture debacle, they could atleast try testing the waters.
DicKy is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 21:48   #20
BHPian
 
prakhar1998's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 287
Thanked: 493 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
So these hot hatches can certainly be a blast to drive, not sure I would want one as a daily drive. At least you want some more comfort, at least I do.

Jeroen
If you consider the latest generation hot hatches, they provide excellent luxury and comfort. This versatility is what makes them so desirable. They are sporty, quick, comfortable, luxurious, easy on the pocket, and easy to drive around and park.

The latest iteration of the Golf GTi also gets adjustable dampers that means it's ride won't be as bone jarring as the previous generations'.

They appeal mostly due to their convenience. As cities are getting more and more congested, manoeuvring a large sedan, or a large sports car is getting harder.
prakhar1998 is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 22:41   #21
BHPian
 
Arkin evoisrevo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: KA03; AP02
Posts: 680
Thanked: 108 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by DHABHAR.BEHRAM View Post
(I saw the GT TDI and I did not buy it as it did not have sporty interiors, I wanted a bright red car or a dark grey car with all black interiors with red or grey stitching, biege put me off, biege does not denote sportiness)
You might want to check out the 2014 GTs that come with all black interiors, except for the seats, sir:
Name:  70e1179047b511e4a79025c45acf3997_dashboard.jpg
Views: 3215
Size:  71.1 KB
Source: https://in.news.yahoo.com/blogs/full...084944629.html
Arkin evoisrevo is offline   (5) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 23:03   #22
BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 200
Thanked: 149 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Why dont you buy a used Fiesta 1.6 S, upgrade tyres, Pete it, Red Rooster it, remap it etc etc and finish everything for 6 lakhs and 4.2 metres and 400 liters of (to) boot ?
As Jeroen says a hatch will still be a cramped option.
fiestarry is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 11:16   #23
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: MUMBAI
Posts: 3,059
Thanked: 4,623 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arkin evoisrevo View Post
You might want to check out the 2014 GTs that come with all black interiors, except for the seats.
Dear Arkin evoisrevo - . thanks for your comments. I had checked out the GT TSI and the GT TDI in July 2014 in the Worli showroom in Mumbai. The biege was all over the place, not only the seats. I pondered over the whole thing and instead of wasting time trying to change things beyond my control (I know a couple of guys there so although I knew the outcome, I talked to one of them just for the heck of it. After the usual pleasantries, I could sense the "firangs don't listen" syndrome), so I became a little "streetsmart". First, I went and bought myself a brand new Alto K10 for the wifey and for doing household chores so she is happy. It does not have any biege in it whatsoever. That done, I seriously set about finding myself the exact car that I always wanted to buy. At a lot less than half of the money left over because I did not buy the GT TDI, I bought myself a beautiful 2002 model, first shape, one owner, old Parsi uncle owned, self driven, very sparingly used only in the city, original Mumbai registered, Honda City 1.5EXI with brand new tires and battery. Every single thing including the cassette player is original and untouched and everything works. I am absolutely enjoying the exhilarating performance from this production car and it's not the VTEC! I know that the VTEC has black leather seats et al! Also, I don't really care that it does not have alloy wheels. It runs better than many new cars. It tracks dead straight, there is no "pulling" at all. The steering wheel does not vibrate, even at 100 kmph. It's my hot hatch, you know what I mean? I have touched 169 kmph in it and I know that it will go faster. With this performance, it gives me 12 kmpl. Paisa vasool, what more do I want? And I've still got money leftover to put petrol in it! .

Now look at the complete picture. Many times I have seen that the package is not full. There will be that one something in the car, something that you don't want. In the GT TDI, it's the biege. There are many such examples: 1. Tire size will be one width smaller than actually required to deliver snapshot handling (175 section instead of 185). 2. Alloy wheel will be silver painted instead of brushed aluminum finish or black. 3. Alloy wheel design will be completely out of sync with the theme of the car. 4. Alloy wheel nuts will not be capped, there will be green permanent pen marks on them, showing that they were torqued on the assembly line. The list will be endless. This is the problem definition. How to decide? What to benchmark? Let me know your answer!

The window for a real hot hatch in India is wide open. I wish that some good cars occupy this space soon.

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
DHABHAR.BEHRAM is offline   (8) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 12:04   #24
Distinguished - BHPian
 
vb-san's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: S'pore/Thrissur
Posts: 4,626
Thanked: 3,676 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merc_lover666 View Post
However as on today there is no real choice for the Indian enthusiast who wants a stock car, which is really and seriously fast...


Manufacturers like our own Maruti Suzuki (India) have excellent cars like the swift that can be easily transformed into a serious hot hatch with minimal changes. Only if they plonk in a 1.6 or 1.8 litre turbocharged Petrol engine, with a new ECU, Injectors and Air Intake System and upgrade the dampers, brakes and tyres and of course add the necessary safety equipment like ABS, EBD and Air Bags, we could have a car with something like 200 BHP and at an approximate price point of 15 lakhs or may be even less on road. Guys just imagine a 200 HP hatch weighing under a 1000 kilos and for around 15 lakhs or less on road. Is it not time that a company like Maruti had it's own tuning arm like the AMG'S, Brabus, Mugen's, TRD's of the world. Hell even Volvo have Polestar.

Well its true that manufacturers are playing it too safe with the engine options they choose for India. Its not that they have to come up something new to cater the need for the so-called hot hatchbacks. For e.g.; Suzuki have the brilliant Swift Sport in their international portfolio which can be an easy fit in the Indian Market, with a price tag of around 10-11 lakhs. The car is well equipped with a 134bhp 1.6L engine, and have all necessary safety picks like 6 airbags, disc brakes all-around, ESP etc. Similarly Honda has the option to give the Jazz with the 1.5 ivtec. But unfortunately these manufacturers are all about numbers, and are hardly bothered to provide with niche offerings.

Name:  swiftsportchampionyellow.png
Views: 2686
Size:  187.1 KB
vb-san is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 12:34   #25
BHPian
 
damager21's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 727
Thanked: 2,236 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Article in ACI "Volkswagen mulling hotter Polos for India"

As ever, there’s a choice with VW. It can either choose to import the new 150bhp Polo GT or go the whole hog and bring the seriously quick 189bhp Polo GTI. The new GTI is really quick too. Going from 0-100 takes just 6.7 seconds, and the car is likely to get adaptive dampers. As it happens, both engines have currently been homologated for sale in India on other products from the group. The 1.4 TSi used on the new GT currently also powers the base Skoda Octavia, and a slightly de-tuned version of the 1.8 TSi can be found under the hood of the larger 1.8 Octavia too.
damager21 is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 12:43   #26
Senior - BHPian
 
humyum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Leicester/Mumbai
Posts: 2,289
Thanked: 2,159 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Firstly, I think a Turbo Petrol Hatchback, or a Petrol hatchback very high on power in a country like India will NEVER ever sell for the simple reason, hatchback customers may well in a year or two be okay with paying 10 or 11 lakhs for a hatchback, but these customers still have the 'choti gaadi, acchi mileage mentality'. A 150 to 160 bhp petrol hatchback will give peanut mileage in the city, peanut mileage on the highway. Yes, it will be fun to drive, but a petrol car when 'had fun with' lets the fuel gauge dip at the speed of light.

Example: Drive a Swift Petrol in 'drive it like you stole it mode' on the highway, you will reach south of 10 kmpl.

Drive a Swift Diesel like your tail was on fire, you will be hard pressed to reach anywhere south of 14-15.

The trend that I think will pick up in India like no one's business is 'Diesel Hot Hatches' in Manual 6 speed avatar with sorted handling and looks to go, the second trend that will pick up is Diesel hot hack with an Automatic 'RELIABLE' transmission in the 10 to 11 lakh range.

Last edited by humyum : 5th January 2015 at 12:51.
humyum is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 12:45   #27
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 1,851
Thanked: 3,149 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Most of them already have the components, but why bother when the quintessential Indian hatchback customer's first question is "How many km/liter?" not "How many horses under the hood?"

VW already has the GT twins, Maruti has the 1.4 K-series they can fit into the the Swift (a real RS, not that two-pence sticker-job monstrosity they call RS today), FIAT have the 1.4 T-Jet to plonk into the Punto, Ford has the 1.6 Duratec to use in the Figo, Hyundai, well...err....their cars handle like crap anyway so no point in an engine upgrade

It's Maruti that baffles me the most. Lesser manufacturers may claims concerns over reputation (FIAT is still shaking off the fuel-guzzler image of the Palio era), but Maruti is the top dog and can easily afford a niche offering, and it WILL sell.

Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 5th January 2015 at 12:46.
Chetan_Rao is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 13:03   #28
Senior - BHPian
 
mallumowgli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Palakkad/Coimbatore
Posts: 1,091
Thanked: 687 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by humyum View Post
Firstly, I think a Turbo Petrol Hatchback, or a Petrol hatchback very high on power in a country like India will NEVER ever sell for the simple reason, hatchback customers may well in a year or two be okay with paying 10 or 11 lakhs for a hatchback, but these customers still have the 'choti gaadi, acchi mileage mentality'. A 150 to 160 bhp petrol hatchback will give peanut mileage in the city, peanut mileage on the highway. Yes, it will be fun to drive, but a petrol car when 'had fun with' lets the fuel gauge dip at the speed of light.
The OP is not talking about this segment of customers. He is talking about the niche set of customers who are not bothered about kmpl but for lack of options are forced to resort to after market modifications

The question is whether this niche customer is willing to shell out a premium associated with a low volume niche product? No one knows, since no one has tried to find out in earnest
mallumowgli is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 13:09   #29
BHPian
 
4nd3r50n's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 88
Thanked: 43 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

What would you guys say about this then? Just read on the Autocar India wesbite

Quote:
Volkswagen is looking at getting some of its sportier hatchbacks to India. It is doing this in an effort to help connect the brand better with car enthusiasts. While earlier there was talk of importing the Golf GT, now VW is also looking further down the price band at sportier derivatives of the Polo. Part of this is because the current version of the Polo GT has done so well, confounding the expectations of the company. And the Polo will be a car VW will carry on producing in India, future generations included.

As ever, there’s a choice with VW. It can either choose to import the new 150bhp Polo GT or go the whole hog and bring the seriously quick 189bhp Polo GTI. The new GTI is really quick too. Going from 0-100 takes just 6.7 seconds, and the car is likely to get adaptive dampers. As it happens, both engines have currently been homologated for sale in India on other products from the group. The 1.4 TSi used on the new GT currently also powers the base Skoda Octavia, and a slightly de-tuned version of the 1.8 TSi can be found under the hood of the larger 1.8 Octavia too.

While it is clear that both these cars would be great brand builders for Volkswagen and the Polo sub-brand, neither is likely to be cheap. The new Polo GTI, for example, even if partly assembled here, would cost upwards of Rs 17 lakh, and that for a car the size of a Swift would be a hard sell.
If this happens...
4nd3r50n is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2015, 15:42   #30
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: MUMBAI
Posts: 3,059
Thanked: 4,623 Times
Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4nd3r50n View Post
Volkswagen is looking at getting some of its sportier hatchbacks to India. Part of this is because the current version of the Polo GT has done so well, confounding the expectations of the company. There is a choice with VW. It can either choose to import the new 150bhp Polo GT or bring the seriously quick 189bhp Polo GTI. Both engines have currently been homologated for sale in India on other products from the group. The 1.4 TSi used on the new GT currently also powers the base Skoda Octavia, and a slightly de-tuned version of the 1.8 TSi can be found under the hood of the larger 1.8 Octavia too.

While it is clear that both these cars would be great brand builders for Volkswagen and the Polo sub-brand, neither is likely to be cheap. The new Polo GTI, for example, even if partly assembled here, would cost upwards of Rs 17 lakh, and that for a car the size of a Swift would be a hard sell.

What would you guys say if this happens,
Dear 4nd3r50n / damager21 - why do you think they are doing the Polo cup? As they already have the ammunition, they can exploit, because for them there is almost no risk eitherways. Simple! .

Dear all - to try and answer "how many will bite at premium cost", it depends how you strategically look at the whole thing. The traditional guys will go with premium cost (their accountants won't allow them otherwise), but then the whole thing will die. India is not a premium cost market. The real fun will be to build budget into the sales price of each production car currently sold, demarkate this money for losing it, go non-conventional on cost, break all psychological cost related resistances and decimate the competition by building unshakeable entry barriers to their plans. By the time the guys realize what is done, you are way ahead and once you occupy the customers' mindspace, business is yours for the taking! This window of opportunity was open to Maruti in 1983 in the mainstream segment. This window is again open now in this segment.

Let's see, "kisme kitna hai dum"! .

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
DHABHAR.BEHRAM is offline   (8) Thanks Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
From a hot hatch to a HOTTER hatch : A pre-worshipped '02 Fiat Palio 1.6 GTX swiftnfurious Long-Term Ownership Reviews 70 13th July 2017 10:35
My Skoda Fabia 1.2 TDI: An Enthusiast's Hatch anuragbagur Long-Term Ownership Reviews 13 20th January 2016 18:48
Hot Hatch Wanted - 40 Lakh Budget. UPDATE: Mini Cooper S booked! msbehave Luxury, Imports & Niche 107 4th August 2013 15:26
A newbie desperately waitin to post his new car pics nishant.anand Introduce yourself 16 27th November 2006 14:42
Advice Needed Desperately Vish_Janu Modifications & Accessories 3 16th July 2006 01:49


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 08:30.

Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks