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Old 1st December 2006, 04:25   #1
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Default Return of the UNO?

Ever wondered what BVR Subbu was up to? Apparently as CEO of a new company he is negotiating to buy dies of the FIAT Uno, restyle it and upgrage the engine to come up with another people's car.

As the architect of Hyundai succesful launch in India and it subsequent rapid growth, you gotta take him seriously.

AP government which is hyper desparate to get a auto plant is also a party to this. Recall YSR govt was so desparate that they were willing to give a bribe of 11 crore to a VW exec to pick Vizag. VW of course has now picked Pune.

READ ON:

The Hindu Business Line : MLR Motors in talks with European co for `small car'

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Old 1st December 2006, 08:27   #2
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Looks like a nice plan... A rival to Indica diesel makes sense...

But... Almost all the rest are going to move forward to modern disels soon... Indica should get DiCOR, Swift and rest will get the multijet diesel, GEtz and santro may get CRDi... Will a new company be able to challenge that???
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Old 1st December 2006, 09:15   #3
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Quote:
he is negotiating to buy dies of the FIAT Uno, restyle it and upgrage the engine to come up with another people's car.
Quote:
A rival to Indica diesel makes sense...
A people's car in India is typically more M800/Alto due to their price positioning. A diesel may/may not necessarily be considered as a people car, again since its pricing will always be highere than an entry-level petrol car
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Old 1st December 2006, 10:52   #4
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Ha! Atlast, someone has some sense! If only FIAT had thought of redesigning the UNO ...Its highlight is its great diesel engine...you have to experience the torque in the 2nd or 3rd gear to believe it!...I have one for more than 7.5 years!...If they had added a Turbo and a Common Rail Unit (or MJD in FIAT's case), i cant imagine what the end result would have been and I think thats what is being planned too!...you just cant bring an old diesel engine in todays' world of Euro III/IV emission norms!

Just before its production was stopped, the price for the UNO FIRE 1.2L Petrol with A/C was 2.5 Lakhs and UNO D 1.7L Diesel with A/C & Power Steering was 2.9 Lakhs...So the Petrol comes in the Alto/Indica Xeta terrain & its much bigger and the Diesel comes in the Indica D terrain and is almost the same size...you get a solidly built car with high mileage (14km/l in the city and 18km/l in the highway)...now thats what i call V.F.M yet rock solid
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Old 1st December 2006, 11:17   #5
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Uno Diesel with the 1.7 engine was a wonderful package... loved the performance of that car... Uno in a new shape/design with a more refined engine should do well in the market...
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Old 1st December 2006, 11:23   #6
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Originally Posted by arif_t01 View Post
Just before its production was stopped, the price for the UNO FIRE 1.2L Petrol with A/C was 2.5 Lakhs and UNO D 1.7L Diesel with A/C & Power Steering was 2.9 Lakhs...So the Petrol comes in the Alto/Indica Xeta terrain & its much bigger and the Diesel comes in the Indica D terrain and is almost the same size...you get a solidly built car with high mileage (14km/l in the city and 18km/l in the highway)...now thats what i call V.F.M yet rock solid
Well it really doesn't conclude that if car like Uno re-strikes the market, it will have similar price it had when it was discontinued. Uno's price got this range when it virtually stopped selling, no one seemed interested then. And this huge price cut was the only way to clear the stocks.
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Old 1st December 2006, 12:15   #7
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The UNO was the best buy in its class during 1996-2000. Hope it does come back.
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Old 1st December 2006, 13:57   #8
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Though the initial pickup was sluggish, it is compensated in the 2nd and 3rd gears.

Had the pleasure of driving the diesel one extensively and fell in love with it. But for the spares market, would like to have one. Good mileage and good drive quality.

I did read somewhere that there was a nasty "flashpoint" (Don't know what is means, something to do with the visibility ?) but did not face any problems.

A slightly higher ground clearance should be of order.
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Old 1st December 2006, 14:47   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
Ever wondered what BVR Subbu was up to? Apparently as CEO of a new company he is negotiating to buy dies of the FIAT Uno, restyle it and upgrage the engine to come up with another people's car.

As the architect of Hyundai succesful launch in India and it subsequent rapid growth, you gotta take him seriously.

AP government which is hyper desparate to get a auto plant is also a party to this. Recall YSR govt was so desparate that they were willing to give a bribe of 11 crore to a VW exec to pick Vizag. VW of course has now picked Pune.
READ ON:

The Hindu Business Line : MLR Motors in talks with European co for `small car'
I came across this startling line in the cited report:

According to industry sources, MLR Motors is obtaining the patent for the Uno platform from Fiat of Italy.

Patent for the Uno platform?

Obviously, the reporter didn't do his homework properly before filing the report. Copyright in Uno's industrial drawings is probably what he meant.

Somehow, I don't feel very positive about this venture. I suspect the end product might be a car like the "Rhino Rover" - an incongruous mish-mash of bits and pieces obtained from here and there that nobody wants.

Last edited by directinjection : 1st December 2006 at 14:49.
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Old 1st December 2006, 14:52   #10
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The problem with re-launching the UNO is not going to be the engine & drivetrain. The basic problem would be the dated looks, interiors & general fit-and-finish of the car.

The game for small cars has really moved from the days when the UNO was initially launched. Even then it was 13-year old car & now it's a 23-year old car! The products now are much advanced in Looks, Quality, Fit-and-Finish, Interiors etc.

IMHO BVR Subbu did a great job with Hyundai due to various factors including a HUGE marketing budget, a good product & solid backing from the manufacturer. Now with this venture I'm not sure how deep the pockets are but revamping the basic product to get it upto a basic standard & launching a brand-new manufacturer in a rapidly growing market is not going to be easy.

Anyways best of luck to Subbu & his team, it'll nice to see if they do well.
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Old 1st December 2006, 15:11   #11
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End of the day, Subbu is a salesman, not so much an operations person
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Old 1st December 2006, 18:37   #12
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The dies of the UNO doesn't mean it's the same car!! Does it??

Subbu is purely a salesman, no doubts.
I think this man will breath some fresh air into that old vehicle as the customers needs it.
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Old 1st December 2006, 19:06   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theMAG View Post
A people's car in India is typically more M800/Alto due to their price positioning. A diesel may/may not necessarily be considered as a people car, again since its pricing will always be highere than an entry-level petrol car
People's car meaning compete with Indica-D I guess which is fast replacing the 800/Alto as people's choice.

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Originally Posted by iraghava View Post
The problem with re-launching the UNO is not going to be the engine & drivetrain. The basic problem would be the dated looks, interiors & general fit-and-finish of the car.

The game for small cars has really moved from the days when the UNO was initially launched. Even then it was 13-year old car & now it's a 23-year old car! The products now are much advanced in Looks, Quality, Fit-and-Finish, Interiors etc.
I guess Subbu's logic is that M800/Omni is also 20 years old and continues to sell with minor updates. Similarly they might get some restyling done by IDEA or IAD to both cockpit and exterior, leaving the guts the same. UNO is still selling in Latin America as the Uno Mille.



Another off road version called Mille Way FIRE (source noted below)


Last edited by Mpower : 1st December 2006 at 19:21.
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Old 1st December 2006, 19:24   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
I guess Subbu's logic is that M800/Omni is also 20 years old and continues to sell with minor updates. Similarly they might get some restyling done by IDEA or IAD to both cockpit and exterior, leaving the guts the same. UNO is still selling in Latin America as the Uno Mille.
Agreed that could be a possible approach but you do realise how cheap they would have to keep the price of this car if they are going to be competing with the 800/Omni. Ours is now an advancing market & they should be looking to sell something atleast 1 generation more modern.

I'm not convinced that a cheap car in the mould of the 800 being slightly bigger & powered by a diesel engine is going to sell. Or maybe it will but my gut feelings says Subbu might just have a failure on his hands. Since to create good image & publicity for his new brand he's gonna have to spend ****-loads of cash on a massive ad campaign ala Hyundai thereby indirectly raising the cost of the product.

One basic problem being that the 800/Omni have been on sale for decades & are known commodities to the buying public now whereas he would be coming with a product which failed the last time around (arguably yes more due to company policies than the product's shortcomings) and he's launching an unknown company. But nevertheless it'll interesting to see how he launches this challange.

Last edited by iraghava : 1st December 2006 at 19:26.
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Old 1st December 2006, 19:53   #15
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Well you do have a point. If I was planning a car, I would plan for the next 20 years. Lets see what happens.

Execution and marketing can make all the difference.

Last edited by Mpower : 1st December 2006 at 19:56.
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