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Old 1st September 2006, 22:34   #16
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NYPD uses three wheelers to quickly move around in NY trafic. They pretty much look like our autos. But I am sure they are not...
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Old 2nd September 2006, 16:13   #17
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with the kinda quality TATA's have, i doubt they wud be allowed in the US! why do u want to cling to something like it when u can get lot better stuff in the US for the same price, or in cases even less!
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Old 2nd September 2006, 23:59   #18
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I'am not looking for a cheap car. The very idea to see a TATA automobile in USA is exciting. Would love to see an Indian Made automobile in USA..
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Old 3rd September 2006, 01:01   #19
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Would you be satisfied with the Mahindra Scorpio?
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Old 3rd September 2006, 02:22   #20
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Hey ELF! u the man! u got ma point! Scorpio is one machine which u can actually show off to the US! coz for sure there is no match for it pricewise in the US for such a beefy SUV!
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Old 3rd September 2006, 08:24   #21
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Yes. I would love the scorpio!!. Thats even better!. I know that Mahindra started selling their Tractors in USA and people do like them. Hope to see a scorpio soon.
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Old 3rd September 2006, 11:40   #22
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Default And now, the Mahindra Scorpio.

Guys, you gotta know that we have only two vehicle manufacturers that can be recognized globally as home-grown - Tata & Mahindra.

No - Sipani / Reva / whoever cannot be really termed manufacturers - more like inspired tinkerers. Maruti has all it's major R&D & testing done by Suzuki, & simply manufactures it's units here under some sort of licence, so it can't be termed as a manufacturer, & is perceived globally as just another assembly plant for Suzuki.

America is one of the toughest, yet most lucrative markets for vehicle manufacturers. Although both Tata & Mahindra would absolutely give anything (even pull outta India) to be able to sell in large numbers in the States, they can't because of the following reasons:
  1. Basics.
    US / European vehicle testing norms are very strict, including those for homologation with the EPA, crash worthiness, pedestrian safety, etc. They would have to re-engineer their vehicles to such an extent that you wouldn't recognize them, & most probably have to get technical expertise from engineering consulting firms.
    .
  2. Sales.
    The cost of selling in the States is huuuge. They would also have to tie-up with US advertising agencies, lawyers, set up offices, dealers, parts depots, etc.
    .
  3. Demand.
    This is directly tied with point 2. You would have to create a serious demand to justify the costs & effort of the entire excercise. Demand would have to be in the hundreds of thousands, & (no offence) not just a coupla hundred homesick NRIs wanting to see something Indian available in the States. We would have to engineer & create a positive image for both the company as well as it's product.
    .
  4. What do you want?
    Do you really want to buy & drive a Scorpio in the States, or are you simply longing to see something Indian available at the dealers / on the road? Honestly answer - wouldn't you rather buy a Suzuki Grand Vitara for the same price, or would you rather chug around in a badly engineered, terribly built Tata Safari Dicor? Due to the availability of a massive number of brands, models & types of vehicles in the States, you are what you drive, & hence, your neighbours, etc. would think of you as some sort of kook or weirdo.
    .
  5. Suitability.
    Also remember that their roads are vast, their people are vast, & their distances are vast. A large, powerful vehicle is better suited there than here. Also, Indian requirements of power & speed aren't much. We can get by with an anemic 115HP CRDI engine & think it's state-of-the-art, but it would be perceived as junk in the States. Keep in mind that the resurgence of American pride ("Buy American") after 9/11 has also caused a lot of foreign manufacturers (cars or otherwise) a lot of stress due to falling sales.
    .
  6. Past Manufacturers.
    Even somebody like Peugeot pulled out of the States, as the sales trickle could not justify the costs involved in selling the cars. That's Peugeot - a huge conglomerate with manufacturing & sales facilities all over the world, along with the technical & financial muscle. Even they couldn't figure out the US market & had to pull out completely in the early nineties!
The basic problem with Indian manufacturers is that in terms of the automobile, we're just coming out of the dark ages - a car is not yet seen as a necessity by a large part of the population here, just another luxury that the rich have.

Vehicle enthusiasts are an even narrower bunch than vehicle owners, & are few & far between, (case in point - only 7000-odd T-BHP members in a country of 1.2 billion). Hence, the immediate need of the manufacturers is to create more demand for their vehicles. Hell - I'd love to see a nice, factory specced Mahindra Scorpio with a 250 BHP (it would really float my boat), but I wouldn't buy one.

Also take the example of the Maruti-Suzuki Baleno. Here, it's the second most expensive Maruti you can buy, & is touted as "sheer luxury", "amazing power", etc. In the States, it's a tin-pot econobox & the only thing amazing about it is the gas mileage, which the Americans don't currently give a cr@p for. It's positioned at the absolute bottom end of the market class. The same goes for the Hyundai Sonata, the Mitsubishi Lancer, etc.

What we should do for now is concentrate on the BRIC bloc - Brazil, Russia, India & China. These markets shall give us the maturity & experience, & eventually allow us to enter developed markets such as Europe & the US.

So, if you really want to see a Scorpio or a Tata Safari in the States, I suggest you go to their websites for now.
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Old 3rd September 2006, 12:25   #23
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ELF.. you are absolutely correct on all the points!

M&M and TATA have just woken up from their cushy monopoly days! It is good to see them trying to up their performance and matching the competition... Instead of looking at the overseas market these companies should give Indians good automobiles which confirms to international quality and safety and is also well priced!

Yes, it would be abolutely amazing to see an Indian vehicle in US or Europe, but it ends there!

On one of my trips to US, I ended showing Scorpio pic (coz I drive one ) to the guys there and they liked really liked it. Then they wanted to know the kinda cars used in India.. so showed them all the cars and guess what... all the ladies and the guys were thrilled looking at the REVA!!!! They said thats the best looking car they've seen!
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Old 3rd September 2006, 13:42   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elf
... it's a tin-pot econobox ... positioned at the absolute bottom end of the market class.
A story that I had read about Suzuki's in the US: take your Vitara for servicing, and the mechanics at the Suzuki dealership dive for cover, trying their best to not be assigned to it.

I too had shown pics of the Reva, and the ladies said it was cute. They seemed very intrested, also because of it's cost of running.


Coming back to the Tata's, check this:
http://www.hinduonnet.com/thehindu/b...0600100300.htm
"The car has undergone extensive and rigorous tests at the internationally reputed test facilities of MIRA, U.K. It also complies with European safety norms of full frontal, offset and rear impact."

Last edited by condor : 3rd September 2006 at 13:50.
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Old 5th September 2006, 08:27   #25
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I agree that Its not an easy job to sell in USA. But, if you dont try then you'll never get there.

Recently I read an article at rediff.com about the success stories of Mahindra Tractors in USA. They are cheap and also of good quality -- Value for Money. www.mahindrausa.com .At the moment they are not selling in huge numbers..but its a beginning..Similarly, if mahindra can try out something with cars..albeit a difficult one -- its possible.

ELF, homesick NRI's are not the real market...they are something that the companies in india can try to start with and that was just an idea..I would try not be derogatory in this forum..Given a chance, I would definitely buy a scorpio even though it is not as good as others -- just to encourage an indian company.

Because of the excise+tax regime existing in india, our automobile companies do not have enough pressure on them to be competetive and inventive and thats the reason they can never compete in the global market.
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Old 5th September 2006, 08:57   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 99w210
Is it possible to import a Tata Indica or something similar to USA?.

Call me crazy but, I would love to see an Indian made car in USA.
I know that Bajaj Chetaks are sold here..But not an Indian Car..

Do you think TATA will ever want to sell cars in USA?.
Why dont you tell us........would you buy an Indica to drive around in D.C?
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Old 5th September 2006, 11:59   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 99w210
I agree that Its not an easy job to sell in USA. But, if you dont try then you'll never get there.
I agree with you. Although if you take the case of Peugeot, the conglomerate lost hundreds of millions in their excercise to sell in the US, & after withdrawal the parent company was on an extremely shaky leg for a long, long time. Would Mahindra or Tata be able to take that hit financially &/or on their image?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 99w210
Recently I read an article at rediff.com about the success stories of Mahindra Tractors in USA ... Similarly, if mahindra can try out something with cars..albeit a difficult one -- its possible.
True, Mahindra's tractors are selling in the States - I read the article too. These are in rural markets, where refinement is not a criteria. Comparing the sales of tractors to automobiles, which require much, much higher levels of refinement, engineering, image, etc. is like saying Indian masalas sell, & therefore, so will cars. Indian masalas are great - Indian cars aren't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 99w210
ELF, homesick NRI's are not the real market...they are something that the companies in india can try to start with and that was just an idea..I would try not be derogatory in this forum..
I did not mean to be derogatory, & specifically mentioned that no offence was meant.

Demographically, there are two broad types of NRIs, especially in the States - the homesick kind, & the kind who wish to have nothing to do with India. It was the former group I was referring to. This lot are milked for all they're worth, with substandard products, their "love for all things Indian", etc.

Also note that I'm not bashing India, & am extremely proud to be an Indian. But simply buying substandard Indian products does not make me a better Indian, & even harms the country by not forcing manufacturers to develop their products to world standards, & be complacent with their Indian sales & crappy attitude.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 99w210
Given a chance, I would definitely buy a scorpio even though it is not as good as others -- just to encourage an indian company.
Well, you would be one of a few, & that may help the importing company in the initial stages. What about post that, when the rest of the American public discover that the products they bought were substandard? Wouldn't that affect the image of India in the long run?

Also remember that a free market has the advantage of weeding out cr@p & that without government sops, non-competitive products would die a natural death.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 99w210
Because of the excise+tax regime existing in india, our automobile companies do not have enough pressure on them to be competetive and inventive and thats the reason they can never compete in the global market.
That's bull, & you know it. You're asking for the Indian Government to protect the Indian automobile industry by taxing imports / CBUs / SBUs. Thats the worst thing that can happen to us, as the manufacturers would stay complacent at the low end of the market & continue to churn out junk, instead of trying to compete with the stuff that's coming in.

The reason we've got lousy stuff is because for nearly 35 years, India had only 2 manufacturers selling relics from the 50s (Premier Automobiles & Hindustan Motors), & they were heavily protected by the government of India. There was absolutely no research & development for all these years from either company, & I was one of the happiest people when Premier shut down forever, because the market forced them to do so. Just think - the company showed great profits for 35 years of it's existence, then started dying in the next 15 years when the Indian economy opened up & allowed competition.

Also, please note that I'm really pleased with the effort that both Tata & Mahindra are making - Tata, coming out with their one lakh rupee car & Mahindra finally coming up with & continuously developing their Scorpio. It's just that both companies have a real long way to go before they can come up with products that can compete in the global auto market. To push them to do so too soon may destroy the companies.

Survival of the fittest - it's a law of nature. For Mahindra & Tata to survive in India or anywhere, they need to churn out substantially better products consistently & study the markets they intend to get into.

Also, Mpower's question to you is pertinent - would you drive around DC in an Indica? I know I wouldn't, even in Bombay.

Last edited by elf : 5th September 2006 at 12:07.
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Old 5th September 2006, 12:50   #28
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Quote:
Also, please note that I'm really pleased with the effort that both Tata & Mahindra are making - Tata, coming out with their one lakh rupee car & Mahindra finally coming up with & continuously developing their Scorpio.
would anyone like to drive around NYC in a Tata 1 Lakh car ?
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Old 5th September 2006, 13:15   #29
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99w210, why Tata alone? Why not consider an Ambassador as well - this way you get some antique appeal thrown in.

Either way, what you'll surely get a lot of is attention, and provide a lot of free laughs as well.
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Old 5th September 2006, 13:27   #30
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@ELF, your points are good and justified, however, about your comments using Peogot, I really doubt its justification, as far as I remembered, this huge corporation did pull back even from India, even before they got in.

Forgive me for my short memory, but if I recollect clearly, the few examples of tata cars available that time, bear no family resemblance with the current generation Tata cars. Looks suddenly down the line a new more matured manufacturer has got the right to use tha Tata brand name.

Am I right ????
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