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Old 7th December 2017, 09:27   #1
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Default Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute

Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute-img20171207wa0012.jpg

A quick summary (translated by yours truly) of the news that appeared in today's Malayala Manorama Newspaper (Malappuram Edition, page 9) :

Quote:
- The State Transport Commissioner had received a complaint regarding a Maruti car with altered front end, structure and tyres.

- Mr. Anas (Motor Vehicle Inspector of Tirur RTO) charged a case and led the investigations.

- The car was confiscated with the help of police and a show cause notice (to deregister the car) was sent. The owner requested for 15 days to produce the car before the authorities.

- The car (stripped to stock) was produced before them and parts handed over, the last day. Authorities informed that fines will be levied after examination.
Original article (screenshot from e-paper) :

Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute-screenshot_2017120709135001.jpeg

And, an image of a Mercedes A Class lookalike Baleno from Motoroids for representative purposes :

Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute-marutibalenotomercedesaclassconversion1.jpeg
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Old 7th December 2017, 09:39   #2
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

looks a bit heavy handed for a car with just modded bumpers and alloy wheels.
If this is illegal, every single DC atrocity running in kerala (like this (What car is this? EDIT: DC modded City) one) should all be confiscated.

looking at the alloys and the bumper of the motoroids car, i think its the same one

Last edited by greenhorn : 7th December 2017 at 09:42.
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Old 7th December 2017, 09:46   #3
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

These "Audi" buses running across KL-TN-KA roads are exempted :

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Image source

Basically, any such alterations will attract cops/RTO because there is no tally of what exists on papers and what they see and here we are talking about a change in manufacturer emblem itself!

Repainting the color of your vehicle to something else than what is stock (and mentioned in RC Book) is illegal and we all know that.

I have had a colleague stopped by cops and fined once for pasting "ZX" stickering on a Kinetic Honda that was "DX" as per TX book entry ; this was in early 2000s.

So if one merrily roams around with all the papers intact and seat belts on, don't forget these basics that make you an easy prey.

Last edited by SDP : 11th December 2017 at 18:15. Reason: LA -> KA
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Old 7th December 2017, 09:46   #4
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

Maybe they should have not used the Merc emblems. Any change in shape should have still looked good without the 3 pointed star.

I know there are rules not to alter the drivetrain related parts like wheels etc. Are there any rules governing the interiors or exterior elements ? I can also see that any change in bumper would alter the crash worthiness of the car ?
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:05   #5
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

While there are many such modded cars out there, I guess, this one is different because in this case, someone seems to have complained to the RTO. And for the RTO to have taken the pains to follow through on that complaint and file a case against the owner, the only possibility is that they were paid to do that or there was pressure on them to do it. Hence, most likely, MB India would have filed a complaint on the basis of feedback they would have received from their dealers in Kerala or in some other form.

A BHPIAN - who had recently modified the Force Gurkha into a G-wagen should take note and be extra careful now.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/4x4-ve...-makeover.html (Force Gurkha: G-Wagen Makeover)
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:05   #6
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

Quote:
Originally Posted by paragsachania View Post

Repainting the color of your vehicle to something else than what is stock (and mentioned in RC Book) is illegal and we all know that.

I have had a colleague stopped by cops and fined once for pasting "ZX" stickering on a Kinetic Honda that was "DX" as per TX book entry ; this was in early 2000s.

So if one merrily roams around with all the papers intact and seat belts on, don't forget these basics that make you an easy prey.
My indica is registered as a sedan in the the RC book. I have seen plenty of bhpians post about RC book entries being wrong. I wonder if Suhas (Man buys Skoda Rapid Black edition; Vinayak Skoda sells him a fake ed converted from a regular Rapid) should take his skoda to kerala - perhaps the police could help him in making his car an actual black edition
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:06   #7
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

Guess this is same car that was featured here. (Pics of weird and wacky mod jobs!)
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:08   #8
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

What is so unique about this modification to make it face this fate? This looks like a bumper and alloy job. The outcome is also not one of the better ones.

There are certainly much better replicas; This one is very close : http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/4x4-ve...akeover-7.html (Force Gurkha: G-Wagen Makeover)

May be there is something more to this story.

EDIT: Image source: Internet
Attached Thumbnails
Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute-11.jpg  

Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute-22.jpg  


Last edited by benzinblut : 7th December 2017 at 10:12.
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:11   #9
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

Quote:
Originally Posted by greenhorn View Post
My indica is registered as a sedan in the the RC book.
Now if you had an Indigo, with an entry in RC as Sedan, and still given a complete makeover removing the boot to make it look like a hatch, you would be still right as per the authorities .
RTO making wrong entries is classic and immortal. You making alterations that deviates from anything in the RTOZ records is erring - This is exactly what made the Merc, eeeeks.....Baleno a victim!

It's the DNA that is being questioned here by the cops

Last edited by paragsachania : 7th December 2017 at 10:14.
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:19   #10
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated & stripped to stock

I think the issue here is not about mod jobs. It's about illegally putting in the logo of a popular brand. I believe DC cars do not put on any other brand; in fact DC put their own brand i.e. "DC" on their cars.

In such cases, the organisation has a right to file a case against the person, for illegal use of their brand logo.
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:34   #11
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute

Quote:
Originally Posted by ptushar View Post
I think the issue here is not about mod jobs. It's about illegally putting in the logo of a popular brand. I believe DC cars do not put on any other brand; in fact DC put their own brand i.e. "DC" on their cars.

In such cases, the organisation has a right to file a case against the person, for illegal use of their brand logo.
If MB has filed a complant, then yes, it makes sense.

Otherwise, its a case of an RTO deciding to be proactive. Which too is fine if they are consistent about it, making sure no modifications are allowed. I doubt that's the case. Its overenthusiasm for a day, most likely.
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:42   #12
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Default Re: Mercedes A Class lookalike Baleno : confiscated and stripped to stock

The poor guy must be heart broken.

Quote:
Originally Posted by narayan View Post
most likely, MB India would have filed a complaint on the basis of feedback they would have received from their dealers in Kerala
Though, it is not sure if Mercedes would/should have done this, they must be having better things to do than confiscating these poor guys who are in fact loyal Bhakts of Mercedes and they spread the love free of cost.

Would like to know what qualifies as acceptable modification. Hope, our TEAM-BHP stickers are legal.

Last edited by Thermodynamics : 7th December 2017 at 10:47.
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:44   #13
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute

Quote:
Originally Posted by lawdgawd View Post
Otherwise, its a case of an RTO deciding to be proactive. Which too is fine if they are consistent about it
Which too should be fine, I guess.
At least, as this news spreads, it will deter people from just fixing brand logos on their cars. Organisations spend millions on building their brand value, and it's just not right for someone to get mileage of this brand value by simply affixing a logo on their cars.
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Old 7th December 2017, 10:54   #14
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thermodynamics View Post
TThough, it is not sure if Mercedes would/should have done this, they must be having better things to do than confiscating these poor guys who are in fact loyal Bhakts of Mercedes and they spread the love free of cost.
Not really. Organisations spend quite a fortune protecting their brands and copyright/trade marks. Hence very likely MB India initiated this. However I feel sorry for the guy and others who spend time and money doing this as a passion to flaunt their favorite brands. Problem is, in today's internet age, news/images of such mods spreads quickly on social media and if someone in MB India did NOT take action, when these images reaches someone in MB Germany, the MB India guy could quickly lose his job for inaction.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ptushar View Post
Organisations spend millions on building their brand value, and it's just not right for someone to get mileage of this brand value by simply affixing a logo on their cars.
Correct.

Last edited by narayan : 7th December 2017 at 10:57.
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Old 7th December 2017, 11:39   #15
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Default re: Mercedes A-Class lookalike Baleno : Confiscated due to ownership dispute

Quote:
Originally Posted by narayan View Post
While there are many such modded cars out there, I guess, this one is different because in this case, someone seems to have complained to the RTO. And for the RTO to have taken the pains to follow through on that complaint and file a case against the owner, the only possibility is that they were paid to do that or there was pressure on them to do it. Hence, most likely, MB India would have filed a complaint on the basis of feedback they would have received from their dealers in Kerala or in some other form.

A BHPIAN - who had recently modified the Force Gurkha into a G-wagen should take note and be extra careful now.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/4x4-ve...-makeover.html (Force Gurkha: G-Wagen Makeover)
I think you are right. This must have been looked into by authorities at the behest of MB. Otherwise, who has to time to get into such petty issues? On a side note, I wonder why some people stick a premium logo on their budget cars? I mean, that doesn't fool anyone these days. Even if it does, you know in your heart what you are driving. And the extra amount he must have spent on these alterations. This cost plus price of new Baleno would have gotten him a used Merc., albeit somewhat older. But, a Benz nevertheless, if he is so hung up on it.
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