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Old 7th January 2015, 13:13   #76
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Dark.Knight, a rational me would definitely agree with all your points, but this thread isn't meant to be reasonable, right? And in a democracy, even the enthusiast has a right to an opinion! That being said, I don't see why India has to lag behind virtually the whole world in road quality or rules. Having been to a 3rd world country like Guatemala, I found the quality of their Highway system to be leagues ahead of ours: speed limits, good surfacing, properly marked exits, etc. All we need to do is ape the west (literally)! Lift and shift.

A recent trip to jaisalmer was an eye-opener. A simple two lane Highway from jodhpur onwards had such beautiful surfacing and visibility that sustained speeds of 120kph were possible. The only thing missing was traffic, which throws a spotlight on your point around rules. If we had traffic here, I'm sure this would be one of the slower, more dangerous highways in the country, purely because we are poor followers of rules.

I believe that if the above two issues can be resolved, then a lot more enthusiasts will be able to realize their dreams!
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Old 7th January 2015, 13:23   #77
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Mod Note: Please discuss only hot hatchbacks on this thread. Campers, Xenons & Boleros have their own threads elsewhere.

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Old 7th January 2015, 13:40   #78
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I still have the itch to go buy a used Getz 1.5 CRDi. IMO, in India it was one that fit the hot hatch bill. I had a Palio 1.6 and yes it was fun. Until the better half found out about the fuel consumption. :(

I think we all have differing opinions on what a hot hatch should be. For me, I'd lean towards buying a car which has a good motor that responds to modifications and has a sturdy build / suspension setup. Car handling / behavior is much more difficult to modify that an engine / speed. One could stick a V8 in a Wagon R only to see it topple at 120 or so. The same V8 on a Figo or an older Zen.. now we are talking.

If I had to pick a hot hatch I'd wish to come to India, it would be the Subaru STi Wagon which is quite well-priced, can be modded like crazy and is super fun to drive (well, er.. other than that darn transmission).
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Old 7th January 2015, 16:08   #79
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

The abarth punto is expected to be launched under 10 L with the T jet engine. But as usual fiat is bound to make a mess of it by launching it at a wrong time. The Abarth 500 is around the corner but at a price bracket takes it to the uber luxury smart hatch which competes with the mini cooper S.
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Old 7th January 2015, 16:28   #80
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

I will be happy if they give Swift a boost with 1.4Petrol or VGT + rear disk brakes which is already available in Sports model
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Old 7th January 2015, 16:31   #81
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

I wonder if Ford wishes to clear off its Figo and any excess Classic 1.6L engine stock by mating the two as a limited edition . That will truly be one awesome little, affordable hatchback. I wonder what is stopping Ford from launching the Fiesta hatchback with the 1.0L EcoBoost unit. This time they can position it sensibly and undo all the goof ups they did at the time of killing the Fiesta sedan (read: its launch).

If Maruti keeps bragging about its rally/motorsport heritage in India, what is stopping them from getting the Swift Sport. If anything, that car will make the Swift an even more desirable car, widen the Swift brand and at the end of the day will result in more sales! Just like how they took the AMT to the masses, they could consider taking performance hatchbacks to the masses too by introducing a sub 12L Swift Sport.

The Punto Abarth seems to be coming since ever and I've given up all hopes of seeing one in India, leave aside the Fiat Bravo or the Alfa Romeo Giulietta.
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Old 7th January 2015, 17:10   #82
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

1. If there are people who can spend around 40 lakhs for a Mini Cooper S then I am pretty sure that there would be a small niche crowd willing to spend 10-12 lakhs for a really hot hatch with less luxuries and such a car would be even cheaper to run in terms of maintenance then say a Mini which is also selling here in India.

2. Also a real enthusiast will never ask "Kitna Deti Hain" bcoz he or she will go with a mindset where the priority is to seek performance first with a trade off/compromise on efficiency.

3. Normally somebody looking for such a car would be one with reasonably deep pockets and would definitely not be looking to use this purchase as a family transportation, but more so a personal passion fulfilled at a reasonable price.
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Old 7th January 2015, 17:49   #83
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

I've read that Volkswagen plan on releasing a pimped out version of the Polo in India with a horse power north off 160 and even 180.
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Old 7th January 2015, 17:59   #84
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Is asking for the 1.8L TSi in a Polo and 1.6L Duratec in Figo like asking for the moon?

Who approves pointless variants/cars like Cross Polo, Etios Cross, Avenntura Minus T-Jet etc. but disapproves high capacity petrol engines in hatches?

Edit: Only 16 thanks as of 7th January for the Opening Post in an Automobile Forum. Nothing more to say.

Last edited by kiku007 : 7th January 2015 at 18:00.
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Old 7th January 2015, 19:10   #85
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

When it comes to hatchbacks, most manufacturers are interested in the volumes. As one of my CA colleague once told me 'In any industry, at the end, all that matters is the bottom-line and profits, no one cares what a select few individuals want'.

Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai will never launch hot hatches here in India which would sell in double or maybe triple digits. For them, there are other countries with stronger currencies and greater demand. The only case where they would do so is when they feel intimidated by Polo GT, which is not very much likely to happen.

I might be wrong, but I feel VW has kept the GT in India because they want to make Indians perceive the brand as one who makes premium cars high on quality, tech and desirability. And they have succeeded well. Maruti and Hyundai ? I am not so sure if they would fall in this category.
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Old 7th January 2015, 20:53   #86
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

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Originally Posted by NiInJa View Post
I might be wrong, but I feel VW has kept the GT in India because they want to make Indians perceive the brand as one who makes premium cars high on quality, tech and desirability. And they have succeeded well. Maruti and Hyundai ? I am not so sure if they would fall in this category.
That is precisely what a Halo product (like the GT) is supposed to do.

The enthusiasts might be a small segment, but, they are also quite vocal and have an influential effect on purchases, which trickles down to the lesser variants.

Besides, there is another aspect, if a high performance variant, which is generally taken as prone to abuse, is seen to do well, it automatically tells the non-enthusiasts that there is a robust car underneath, which would also hold good for the lower variants.

This is exactly why companies had invested in Motorsport, high performance variants and what not.

Just as an example, look how the Polo brand is perceived today, even by the general population. On the otherhand how many folks appreciate that the Honda Brio is actually a fun to drive hatch?
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Old 9th January 2015, 15:19   #87
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Default Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Great discussion and i see not too much of Ford in the mix. If it was ever classified as a hatch- Ford Fusion would get my thumbs up. Having owned one of the first generation models, this was the getaway car for me anytime. A 1.6l engine in its chest and the vehicle was impressive with take offs and cruising. I managed to push her to the 150 mark , but then i gave in to the fears of copassenger. Stiff suspension and a steady wheel made it a highway cruiser.
Do you think a revamped Fusion with a 2l engine could pass muster
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Old 9th January 2015, 21:16   #88
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My wishlist, a Grande Punto 1.9 Multijet II putting out 150-170PS. Should be quick and fuel efficient as well. I agree, Petrol Turbos are fun, but not a practical option for most Indians. If I'm to choose between a 150BHP/7sec/8kmpl petrol or a 150BHP/8sec/14kmpl diesel, I will obviously choose the diesel, have to sacrifice somewhere.
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Old 10th January 2015, 00:02   #89
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Thumbs down Re: Desperately wanted: A Hot Hatch for the Indian enthusiast

Wow! 6 pages of posts so far, about a topic which has no place in a country like ours. Do we have a lot of spare time or what!

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Originally Posted by Merc_lover666 View Post
...then I am reasonably sure there are a few thousand people in India who will line up to buy such a hot hatch and make the whole project viable for Maruti. What a company like Maruti needs to understand is that the aim for them will not be the profits they could make by selling these hot hatches but just imagine the boost that the already sporty image of the swift will get not only in India but world wide as Maruti could use India as a base to export these cars to the evolved markets, where there is a huge demand for such hot hatches and it is an independent segment of its own in countries within Europe.
Do you really think that a car manufacturer that has had unprecedented success at selling cheaply made fuel efficient cars to the Indian public for close to 3 decades will suddenly decide to make some hot hatchback just because a few thousand people want it? What sort of paint thinner were you sniffing when you came up with that idea?

Oh, and do you really think privileged Europeans would want to buy some el-cheapo tin can made in India? Especially considering the immense number of choices they have while buying a car?

Last edited by sourav9385 : 10th January 2015 at 00:30.
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Old 10th January 2015, 03:01   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sourav9385 View Post
Wow! 6 pages of posts so far, about a topic which has no place in a country like ours. Do we have a lot of spare time or what!



Do you really think that a car manufacturer that has had unprecedented success at selling cheaply made fuel efficient cars to the Indian public for close to 3 decades will suddenly decide to make some hot hatchback just because a few thousand people want it? What sort of paint thinner were you sniffing when you came up with that idea?


Oh, and do you really think privileged Europeans would want to buy some el-cheapo tin can made in India? Especially considering the immense number of choices they have while buying a car?
It's not always about getting maximum profit out of making cheap affordable cars. There's also something called brand equity. If you got to have brand equity you have got to make cool cars. It's as simple as that. Once your brand becomes cool enough it can penetrate new market spaces while still selling cars like hot cakes in the lower segments. Thus New customer base, additional profits.
Why do you think Lexus went to the trouble of losing a ton of money on making a supercar even though they were doing just fine making normal cars? Same story with Volvo with all its recent polestar business. Last time I heard Hyundai is going to setup a performance wing as well in the international markets.

Now why would these guys risk such time and money on something new and uncertain? Because you have to take risks to take your business to the next level. Sometimes you succeed , sometimes you don't. All of that depends.

By the way, ever heard of Suzuki swift sport. It's got a 1.6 , 134 bhp engine, it's a riot to drive and Europeans absolutely love it. That's why it's in its second generation now. Guess they aren't as narrow minded in their car buying decisions as we are.
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