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View Poll Results: Whats your pick?
European Cars 211 43.78%
Japanese Cars 219 45.44%
Others (Indian, Korean, American etc.) 22 4.56%
Prefer both equally 30 6.22%
Voters: 482. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 15th May 2014, 16:38   #301
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Quote:
Originally Posted by desdemona
Either Fiat India is stupid, wasting resources on useless heavy guage sheetmetal, and great brakes+tyres that have little to do with safety, or Honda is deliberately skimping on the Indian City since its percieved brand values here do not require it to maintain decent standards of braking+tyres.
All round discs is indeed a good thing and so are wider tyres - a good sign of focus on safety/stability. But if that is indeed their ethos, why is it only for a specific model and not standard fitment across all models of Linea ? Or is it that safety is only for those buying the T-Jet ? Why is even ABS & airbags not given on lower trims ? Atleast Honda has made ABS & airbags standard on all trims. BTW while the 1st version of City did not have airbags at all, the 2nd version had only on the top version and 3rd version had on all trims. So they definitely seem to be proactively working on safety features, inspite of no legislation mandating use of airbags. So let us not make it seem like Fiat is out to secure the safety of consumers, while others are not. All of them are here to do business and as good or bad as the other.

P.S.: Don't know if Fiat-India is stupid, but their state of affairs in India make it clear that they don't know to do business.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayKis
This means that the cars are different from the same models they export to Europe.
I don't know what all cars they export, but we have a couple A-Stars and till recently they did export the A-Star to Europe (under Nissan badging) and the A-Star we get here is for it's small size as heavy a car as they come. Eg, this tiny hatchback weighs in as much as the bigger Etios sedan for instance. So...

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayKis
Ever till we have an Indian NCAP or crash test all we can do is see the pictures of accidents and be a keyboard warrior and decide on which car is safe. The pics of the accidents suggest only one thing for sure. If you are involved in a serious accident and would like to come out of it alive, be seat belted in a European one with airbags.
If it were as easy as looking at crash pictures to decide which car is safe, there was no need for crash-tests and ratings.

Check out these snaps from our own accident thread - a Jap car in a very serious accident, with the driver coming out safe and is also a member here.
If somebody looks at these snaps and applies your 'theory' and says that since the driver walked out alive inspite of such a scary accident, the Lancer is the safest car,
then one can only pity them for their naiveness and you for misleading them.

Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?-lancercrash.jpg

Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?-lancercrash1.jpg

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 15th May 2014 at 16:40.
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Old 15th May 2014, 16:49   #302
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

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Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post
then one can only pity them for their naiveness and you for misleading them.
Um the correct word is "na´vetÚ" or "na´vety".
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:10   #303
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Its poor consumer choices and compromises that we Indians have been making over the years. No one is to be blamed for this to be frank.

But since now the buying power has increased its high time government imposes strict laws on all the auto manufacturers.

ABS, AIRBAGS and minimum safety features should be made mandatory on all the cars across all the variants without exception. Strict laws should be imposed on commercial vehicles too.

Only then there will be real competition amongst the manufacturers, be it Japanese or Europeans to provide safer cars and shift the focus from mere mileage which keep them drifting towards puny tyres, lighter cars, non abs, non airbags models etc and other modes of cost cutting.

We cant expect all to be safer like Volvo cars but we deserve a lot better than what the manufacturers dump on us today.
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:13   #304
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Quote:
Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post
P.S.: Don't know if Fiat-India is stupid, but their state of affairs in India make it clear that they don't know to do business.
Not just Fiat, any manufacturer would find it difficult to sell such heavy fuel inefficient cars to people who considers driving Maruti a way of life.

Maruti revolutionized the Indian market and taught us what a car should be. Read somewhere that long before Maruti Udyog inked their deal with Suzuki, they had talked to Volkswagen and even considered bringing the Jetta. The deal, apparently didn't go through. If it had, I am sure, we would not have been a "mileage-kitna-deta-hai" generation.
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:15   #305
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Now since, we have discussed a lot on safety, and not reached a consensus, can the discussion be please moved on to different aspects? The readers have now have had many points over the safety offered by Japs & Euro, and they can probably take their own call accordingly. Let us take this discussion forward, so that other points of Euro & Jap cars also come under light of discussion, since it is not a safety specific thread.

Thanks.
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:23   #306
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Quote:
Originally Posted by amit_mechengg
Its poor consumer choices and compromises that we Indians have been making over the years. No one is to be blamed for this to be frank. But since now the buying power has increased its high time government imposes strict laws on all the auto manufacturers. ABS, AIRBAGS and minimum safety features should be made mandatory on all the cars across all the variants without exception.
You said it. Instead of blaming manufacturers for not adhering to inexistent legislations or consumers for not 'opting' for safety features, we need our auto-regulations to be tougher. And while they are at it, they could bring in a crash testing facility too. Thanks for summing that up beautifully.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blacksport
Not just Fiat, any manufacturer would find it difficult to sell such heavy fuel inefficient cars to people who considers driving Maruti a way of life.
Please stop scrubbing the same old broken record of 'heavy' cars, because that myth has been broken clear and proper in today's context with the kerb-weight of Linea/SX4/Vento. And who told you that heavy is automatically fuel inefficient. There are cars out there that are fun to drive, fuel-efficient and weigh well too. Just that Fiat has not got it in them when it comes to improving FE.
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:47   #307
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Initially when GTO had started this thread, way back in 2006, my vote would certainly have been for the European cars. Skoda was making in roads and had the highly desirable Octavia.

Mercedes was and has always been a desirable brand that most of us would love to own one day.

However, its been 8 years hence and the scenario is completely changed now.

Most of the European cars are now just known for being sturdy.
No reliability and prone to have flat bed trucks are their best friend are all common news.
High cost of maintenance and high handedness of A.S.S are common problems that plague these European companies.

Skoda, once admired has bitten the dust and thankfully so.
VW s not doing too well either. The big three luxury cars are doing their bit to fight out supremacy.

On the other hand, the Japs are a perfect example of the turtle in the "turtle and hare" story. Slow and steady.

My vote goes out to the Japs for maintaining consistency in their products and also making products that are reliable, cheap to maintain and A.S.S that is fairly reasonable.
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:51   #308
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

@arnadchak; Remember Skoda, VW (Audi & nnow Porsche) are the same group.
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Old 15th May 2014, 17:56   #309
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
Not just Fiat, any manufacturer would find it difficult to sell such heavy fuel inefficient cars to people who considers driving Maruti a way of life.

Maruti revolutionized the Indian market and taught us what a car should be. Read somewhere that long before Maruti Udyog inked their deal with Suzuki, they had talked to Volkswagen and even considered bringing the Jetta. The deal, apparently didn't go through. If it had, I am sure, we would not have been a "mileage-kitna-deta-hai" generation.
Instead of saying that Maruti Revolutionized the indian market i would frame it as " It restricted or constrained the indian market"

We need to come out of this benchmark for just " Kitna deti hai" Maruti has gone so much lenghts ahead that even in their advertisements showcasing a space ship, they have shown an indian asking the scientist " Kitna deti hai", instead of this calling as a good advertise i think we should call this a mockery of indian customer.

Who says Fiat cars dont give good mileage? My linea gives 21-23 on highways and 17-18 in city. 90hp punto gives more than that. 75hp punto gives similar figures consistently.
My vento too gives me 18-19, skoda rapid to gives similar figures.

Remember what engine does duty in maruti cars?

Thank god the market is much matured now. There is a equal mix of manufacturers in our country. This is why people opt for audi, bmw etc instead of Kizashi.

If the manufacturers start doing indian market analysis i bet they will require a super computer to put most complex formulas for concluding what indian customer in particular segment wants and still they would fail.

Example : ford which was considered a costly to maintain and not good for service outsold the ford Eco sport.

Renault - people in villages etc cant even spell this brand nor know this brand, but still the Duster sold like hot cakes.

Fiat - good products, but bad reputation - whatsover they do its hard for them to outsell other products. Only chance for them is to tie up with maruti and let linea and punto stand in the maruti showrooms. Soon there will be a booking line with lottery system.

Tata - bad reputation, indian doesnt want to feel cheap that he bought a desi car and not an exotic brand. So even though they bring a very good product like Bolt, Zest with all the features etc i doubt people will buy them in huge numbers. Had ratan tata portrayed the nano as youth icon the fate of a clever car nano would have been different.

Hyundai - hats off to these guys. They have somehow judged what a typical indian wants. They launch good products and keep refreshing them periodically and keep the market on the toe. Features, looks, marketing, gadgets, uplifts and what not, they havent failed yet

So which brand will do good and which wont is very complex to judge. Its not easy to guess indian minds unlike European or US people.
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Old 15th May 2014, 18:19   #310
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronix View Post
While I agree with you on the bolded part in your statement, its unfortunate that its not just the sensible driver that is on the road and there are careless drivers, reckless drivers, cows, dogs, trees and more than what one can imagine and cause a situation that is totally unpredictable.
Completely agree. Hence my post earlier:

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenAvi View Post
Rather than choose between either Asian or European/American cars for better safety standards, it's more to do with driving skills of the brain behind the steering wheel, and the situation around him on the roads.
And further:

Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenAvi View Post
A good, safe and reliable driver has the best chance of being safe, even when inside a tin box, while a careless driver will always crash, even if he's driving a cast-iron vault.
If 95% is the accepted norm for accidents caused by human error in India alone, then the remaining 5% does account for all the other factors you mentioned - dogs, cats, cattle, poor people, trees, even the concerned car's mechanical failures midway through a trip can be bundled into this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronix View Post
While there is such a situation that is out of the reliable driver's control, the european cars simply listen and react better to the driver inputs than the asian/japanese cars because of the stronger handling dynamics. Be it a tin-box or cast-iron vault matters only if things go out of hand. But to avoid such a situation, my vote is always for the europeans.
This, I don't agree to.

There are Asian cars which act/react excellently to driver feedback. My City's ABS has kicked in every time I have needed emergency braking on the highway, coming quickly down from triple digit speeds to crawling within a few moments. Our Ritz, even without ABS, has done quite well in such situations inside the city. Heck, even our Eon has been a decent performer in this regard.

Let's admit it - when a situation goes out of hand, whichever car you are in, be it Japanese or European or Korean or Indian (even), you are doomed. What comes in here is the luck factor, which determines if you will survive the out-of-hand situation, or not.

Case in point - One of my colleagues dozed off behind the wheel of his 3rd-generation City at around 3 AM about 3 years back (with Cruise Control set at 85 kmph), rammed headlong into a tree then side-wise into another tree, his wife sitting beside him wasn't even wearing her seatbelt (he was), and both survived the accident (wife smashed into windscreen, had head concussion and dislocated shoulder, he escaped with a bash to the ribs from the airbag). Car was totaled.

A car reacting to driver's inputs is not a trait specific to European cars only. All car manufacturers strive equally for this regard. Even Hyundai, notorious for making cars with dead steerings and fishtailing behinds, are working hard in this regard - the Grand i10 and the XCent both being examples of slightly better driving dynamics than the present-gen i20 and the Verna.

When we have a "Made in India, for Indians" car, be it Japanese, European, Korean or American, it will always be specific for the Indian customer - fantastic mileage, ably spacious, highway cruiser, large boot and feature loaded. ABS & Airbags can go for a toss as long as the car has alloys, dollops of chrome, a latest bluetooth/USB supporting HU, even buttons on the steering wheel. Customers go in and ask for "camera hai kya?" first, referring to the reverse camera, which has become more of a gimmick feature than an useful one. That's the typical Indian customer mindset and car companies are feeding straight into it and reaping rich profits, Japanese and European alike. Even a company like Honda, commercial organisation as they are, dived into this by taking Honda India "mainstream" last year and see how successful they have become in such a short time.

It's just a question of choosing the lesser of all the known devils, really. Like someone said earlier, unless there are strict laws and norms to be followed for safety in our country, all car companies, regardless of country of origin, will continue to follow this adage and earn their profits.

Last edited by RavenAvi : 15th May 2014 at 18:27.
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Old 15th May 2014, 18:38   #311
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLizardKing
Um the correct word is "na´vetÚ" or "na´vety".
Hmm, I could bet the word exists. Checked couple online dictionaries and it does. Though some links do point to the 2 words you listed. Anyway....

Leaving the much-discussed safety behind, let us move to another factor - Fuel Efficiency.

Time and again, we see this snooty outlook to "Fuel Efficiency" on the forum, as if it is a bad thing, ignoring the fact that its last name is "Efficiency" and from when did being efficient become a bad thing ?

With petrol / diesel costing 75 / 60 in Chennai and similar in other parts of the country, I would think that if our cars took us even 1 km more for every litre of petrol, that is not only money saved for us, but foreign exchange for the country and a precious non-renewable resource saved.

Going all the way back some 30 years, to 1986 when I started riding/driving, petrol cost 9 bucks and our 1971 Bajaj-150 returned a sickeningly low 18kmpl. In contrast our 1985 M800 returned 20+ kmpl on highways and maybe a few kms lesser on the then empty Kerala roads.

Can you see the irony in the whole thing ? A 2-seater weighing around 100kgs gave lesser FE than a 5-seater weighing 6 times more than it. Wasn't that a marvel in efficiency ? No prizes for guessing which vehicle me & friends took out more often, pooling together our meagre pocket-money to put together 20bucks for 2 litres of fuel. Yes, we lined up at the petrol-pump with a new car and demanding 2 litres of fuel, because that was all we could afford then. But that 2 litres took care of our once-in-a-while 35km drive to Thottapally beach and back, for an evening spent watching the sun go down and some nice sea-food.

Fast forward a few years and sick of the low FE of the scooter, I get a rebore done at Chennai and the FE goes up to 30kmpl. Its a measly 12kmpl increase, but I was over the moon since petrol price had by now come to Rs20/litre and every extra km run helped. And now the money for fuel came from my salary and the 18kmpl FE was severely pinching my wallet, with my office commute being 24kms daily.

And then I save some money and bring home a new HH CD100, which opens my eyes wide to the amazing FE a bike can actually deliver. See my log from the time the bike was bought :
Name:  HHCD100FE.JPG
Views: 836
Size:  43.4 KB

An FE of 60kmpl was got even when driven hard (80-90kmph on the free GST road in the mid-nineties), inching up to 70kmpl and more if driven normally. Apart from money saved, it felt good to move from a gas-guzzler to something that used precious fuel optimally.

Was it not a technological marvel that Honda gave in terms of such a FE bike ? More so when seen against the junk that we were getting till then locally. Or is it something to be ashamed of ? I used the bike for 15 years and more than a lakh kms - think of the litres of petrol saved, the money I saved etc.

What about the M800 that even while we sold it 19 years later, was reliable enough to be taken on Chennai-Kerala runs and delivered 20+ kmpl ? Yes, it was small, seating 5 would be tough, not much boot space, not even seat-belts, but given the lack of other options back then, it was the best (overall) one could have. And given the options available back then, it was a fun to drive car too and relish every trip done on it.

So, instead of being ashamed of our culture of "kitna deti hai", it is time we make sure our car manufacturers put fuel efficiency also as a priority, along with safety, space, handling, interiors etc. And heck, when the US (land of guzzlers) keeps putting mpg requirements for manufacturers, why should we not, given we are a net importer of crude ?

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 15th May 2014 at 18:41.
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Old 15th May 2014, 18:52   #312
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Default Re: Japanese or European cars? Whats your pick in India?

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Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
It it were, no Maruti in the current form would have passed, and we would not have been having this debate at all. What I am saying is, don't hide behind the only argument that crash test data is not available. Look for other evidences, however subtle they may be. At least take the test ratings form Euro NCAP and extrapolate.
As I told earlier, I am happy to be proven wrong. But I need hard evidence, which is not available in India and that's all I said. What other evidences are you talking about? A bunch of random accident pictures? And if you want to take Euro NCAP ratings for reference, here is the list of tests which were released for 2013. This is a list of cars from different segments and different manufacturers and it does not give me any indication that European cars are better or Japanese or Koreans are bad. Most of them fared well and equal.
And let me make one thing clear. I'm not a fanboy of any brand, but will stick to my opinion that the blanket statement - "European cars are safer than others" is wrong, until otherwise proven.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blacksport View Post
That is a typical Indian way of saying: "Do you know who I am"? Although it is folded and presented along with something else.
Buddy, this statement is uncalled for. People can interpret what they hear in any way they want, up to them. As it is getting personal, I'm out of this discussion. Every person is entitled to their opinion and I sure can respect that
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Old 15th May 2014, 19:01   #313
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With enough of debate on safety of japanese and european cars let us now concentrate of what practices we can follow to be safe in any of the cars.

IMHO seat belts are the single largest contributor to saving lives in case of accidents.

Below is the snap shot of how the popular hatches which are available in india score as per the euro specs. But we can expect similar results on indian versions.
Attached Files
File Type: xlsx ratings.xlsx (143.6 KB, 125 views)
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Old 15th May 2014, 19:01   #314
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Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post
Hmm, I could bet the word exists. Checked couple online dictionaries and it does. Though some links do point to the 2 words you listed. Anyway....

Leaving the much-discussed safety behind, let us move to another factor - Fuel Efficiency.
The fuel efficiency associated with brand Maruti is primarily due to the number of small cars that they sell. Their bigger cars are either less efficient or on part with the competition. Case in point - SX4 or the Kizashi or the Grand Vitara.
And you do not need to be an Einstein to figure out why their small cars are efficient. Small engine, bantam light weight bodies but they also bring along a whole lot of compromises.

Last edited by GTO : 17th May 2014 at 13:05. Reason: Please quote ONLY the relevant bits of a post. Quoting a full, long post inconveniences our mobile readers.
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Old 15th May 2014, 19:05   #315
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Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post

Check out these snaps from our own accident thread - a Jap car in a very serious accident, with the driver coming out safe and is also a member here.
If somebody looks at these snaps and applies your 'theory' and says that since the driver walked out alive inspite of such a scary accident, the Lancer is the safest car,
then one can only pity them for their naiveness and you for misleading them.

Attachment 1241008

Attachment 1241009
Are we discussing modern cars or are we looking into cars from 1995 which barely had any safety features on board or any safety rating. The Lancer was released world wide in 1995 so I'm not sure showing pics of a 20 year old crashed car that has been mangled has any relevance to any car available today.
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