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Old 13th October 2013, 00:53   #31
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Default The OLD New Car - Badge Engineering

We have been looking at a lot of new cars which actually do not look new. This is because of badge engineering by different companies. This is being done to increase market presence and to save by not investing in developing a whole new product, thereby saving input costs and time.

As per wikipedia -
"Badge engineering or rebadging is the application of a different brand or trademark to an existing product (e.g., an automobile) and subsequently marketing the variant as a distinct product. Due to the high cost of designing and engineering a new model or establishing a brand (which may take many years to gain acceptance), it is less expensive to rebadge a product once or multiple times than to create different models. The term is an oxymoron in that little actual engineering takes place.
The term originated with the practice of replacing an automobile's emblems to create an ostensibly new model. Differences may be confined to simply badges and emblems, or may encompass minor styling differences, as with cosmetic differences to headlights, tail lights, and front and rear fascias. More extreme examples involve differing engines and drivetrains.
Now common, Badge engineering is distinct from platform sharing as an automobile platform may be used with many different applications via actual engineering: such as using a single platform as the basis for sedan and sport utility vehicle model variations."
Our market is seeing a lot of obvious and some not-so-obvious cars in this category as some of their kins are not available in our market. The best way to identify these is the side profile as they hardly bring any changes to these, the profile of the car remains more or less the same, the major styling changes are done to the front, back, lights and of course the badge!

There's another way, in which the different companies buy similar designs from a car designer and do subtle changes as per their own design languages and bring the product. In this category they actually spend on the mechanicals and making the cars look different but save on the costs of designs probably.

Now I shall start the list with the pictures and let them do the talking -
  • Dacia/Renault Logan rebadged as Mahindra Verito
This is the most obvious one as Mahindra and Renault parted ways, the Logan stayed and became the Verito. Few refreshes done by Mahindra on the external front but more or less the same car.
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  • Dacia/Renault Duster rebadged as Nissan Terrano
Terrano is the latest badge engineered product and is completely a Dacia/Renault Duster underneath. The differences are majorly on front, rear and lights.
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  • Nissan Micra rebadged as Renault Pulse
Nissan and Renault have badge engineered almost all products now and have almost similar lineup.
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  • Nissan Sunny rebadged as Renault Scala
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  • Nissan Evalia rebadged as Ashok Leyland Stile
Evalia proved to be a market dud, and now Nissan decided to kill the
News is ripe that Renault is also considering to rebadge it as Lodgy!
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  • VW Vento rebadged as Skoda Rapid
VW as parent company generally shares platforms with skoda and audi. But this time they decided to share the complete product with skoda to fill the gap in there line-up.
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Mod Note: Please merge the thread if a thread already exists, couldn't find one. Thanks
Image Copyrights - respective owners.

Last edited by stormerider : 22nd October 2013 at 13:57.
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Old 13th October 2013, 02:22   #32
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Default Re: The OLD New Car - Badge Engineering

These were the obvious ones, now lets look at the not-so-obvious ones. These are difficult to identify as only the profiles reveal the truth and rest almost everything is changed. These have similar designs, profiles but are different.
  • Toyota Qualis & ICML Rhino
Toyota Qualis was a great success in our market with individuals and taxis. ICML sonalika brought back the quails as Rhino in our market eyeing all that.
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  • Hyundai Tucson & Renault Duster
    As many of us would remember, Hyundai Tucson sold in India is very much similar to the Renault Duster in terms of profile.
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  • Ford Fiesta Classic & VW vento
    Have a look at the profile and rear 3 quarter. Both companies designed the fronts and rears differently, but what is evident is the profile, the crease which runs at the bottom end encasing the wheel arches and lower end of doors.
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  • Ford Fiesta & Hyundai Verna
    This one came to my mind when I first saw them parked outside my office right next to each other, which is there usual place now as they belong to my partners. the profile, crease lines and stance are almost identical, even to the boot integrated spoiler. the difference in design is through the design language of front and rear bumpers, where in Hyundai does the hexagonal grille, ford uses its inverted V grille.
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  • Renault Logan & Toyota Etios
    I have to agree, this one was tricky as the design of etios totally hides the boxy image of Logan. This is a watered down design literally, by pouring water, the edges of Boxy Logan got rounded and voila, we have Etios!
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I may have missed a few and my friends are welcome to add them to this thread. Some of them I will mention which I have not included as their counterparts are not available in India like Rexton is an old generation Mercedes, so is the Force One. Premier rio, sail, and enjoy are all Chinese cars sold under different names.

Rebadging is definitely here to stay as most car manufacturers are concerned about profits and there own margins rather than giving original products. But how is it affecting us? is it beneficial for us? is it like cheating us? or is it giving us competitive price for the same product? I invite my fellows to pour in there thoughts on this trend!

Last edited by stormerider : 22nd October 2013 at 14:16.
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Old 26th May 2018, 19:52   #33
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Default Re: Rebranding/ Badge Engineering

Badge Engineering and Platform Sharing, an gimmick in the past with little or moderate success will be now the most watched topic in the auto industry concerning India.

Yes- When India's Auto Leader Maruti Suzuki and the Global giant Toyota decides to collaborate touching badge engineering / Platform sharing and more.

Here is a re-cap of these concepts as seen in India till date:

Badge engineering, sometimes called Cross Badging, is the practice of applying a different badge or trademark (brand, logo or manufacturer’s name/make/marque) to an existing product (e.g., an automobile) and subsequently marketing the variant as a distinct product.
Quick to the market and low product cost development are the key takeaways from this.

Volkswagen - Skoda

The VAG group did in in 2011 by giving us the VW -Vento and Skoda - Rapid. Later copied by Renault- Nissan with its SUV- Duster and Terrano, Sedans -Sunny and Scala, etc.
Cars were identical except for the front facial which usually remains in line with the family looks of the respective brand. Incidentally both were late to Indian car market. But they were differentiated in offerings, variants and pricing.

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Product cannibalization is obvious and is understood beforehand, as real objective is to achieve higher incremental sales, expand product portfolio at lowest possible cost and keep the showrooms busy with some real business.
How has this fared in India?

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- Limited success initially but cannot be sustained if differentiation is pricing with respect to pricing and updates need to be frequent.

- In this case now Skoda Rapid cannibalizes VW Vento

-In case of Scala- Sunny, Nissan's market share halved when Scala was launched and finally customers rejected Scala due to its pricing.

SUV - Renault Duster and Nissan Terrano

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- Looks played a role and the premium demanded by Nissan saw Tearrano playing second fiddle to Renault.

-First mover advantage faded quickly with the arrival of formidable competition.

-Duster is still able to hold but Terrano is almost on verge of discontinuation.

Nissan Micra + Renault Pulse

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-Was a disaster from day one. Pricing was a non-starter and ultimately even Micra sales dropped for multiple reasons ( competition+ dealer + updates)


Products sold under different brands but made on same platform having same body shape either to serve same consumer segment at similar price point or to cater to needs of different consumer segment at different price point has actually produced much better results.

Though it calls for higher investment but it helps in augmenting market much better.
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Except for external design, logo and sales channel, products have had very little differentiation.
Eventually cheaper one did better or as in some cases, rather the one which actually survived.

VW and Renault were new entrant then and products were relatively new and neither one enjoyed much of brand awareness in Indian market.
How will Maruti Suzuki - Toyota products work?

Toyota-Maruti case becomes more interesting because both are deeply entrenched brand in their own right and product intended to be shared across the brands are best seller in their respective category.

Both have their own share of customers and are known for their own strengths be in Quality , reliability or after service concerns.

Toyota badge will automatically command a price premium so will they be able to sell already successful product at much higher price with mere cosmetic changes.

After sales service of both the companies are benchmark in the industry, Maruti for its reach and Toyota for its standards. So providing service for cross badged product could be a challenge. Just imagine that the Toyota has to train service staff to manage the Fiat’s diesel engine too, unless they decide to offer only petrol or hybrid engine.
Maruti Suzuki selling Toyota Corolla (Could be called Kizashi?) which is speculated to be retailed through NEXA seem to pose a different challenge.

Only time will tell, when products land in real battle ground. Because many a times customer or consumer do not behave in the same way as they state during market research process before the launch and that’s the biggest challenge for marketers and product planners.

Maruti Suzuki's Concept: A concept loosely based on Steve Jobs (former Apple CEO) famous saying – “If you don’t cannibalize yourself, someone else will”.

Maruti’s idea was to offer variety when potential buyer visits a Maruti showroom, so that there could be a better chance people leave the showroom with a Maruti product, and keep Maruti’s sales register ringing.
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Wagon R – Zen Estilo

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Zen Estilo was first move by Maruti to cannibalize its own product Wagon R by launching it at similar price point with slightly different body styling.

Instead of cannibalizing Wagon R, Estilo was able to bring incremental sales and due to platform sharing, unlike old Zen, it was able to achieve cost synergy as well and offer better ROI due to incremental investment on platform. But Zen Estilo was never able to live up to the original jelly bean shaped Zen, in terms of sales.
2014 onwards Wagon R was joined by similarly priced, Maruti’s guinea pig – Celerio. Since launch, Maruti has kept on experimenting with Celerio, for example – it was first to have AMT technology, now discontinued Maruti’s in-house developed 800cc two-cylinder diesel engine, and also the cross-gimmick called Celerio X. But Celerio doesn’t share platform with the Wagon R, perhaps upcoming next gen Wagon R might
Ritz +Swift

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Ritz was launched in the year 2009 and the approach was extension of Zen Estilo-Wagon R experiment and meant more.

Ritz too brought in incremental sales unlike the cross badged products from other manufacturers failed to. Product planning approach seems to be spot on but when styling became a key decisive factor for customer in purchase decision process, Ritz lost to Swift. So, Ritz was not upgraded when Swift transgressed to newer generation in 2011.
In both the cases Maruti was successfully able to augment the market.

But Renault tried to replicate the Maruti Suzuki concept with the Captur, which shares the Duster platform. But out rightly rejected bu customers with overpricing and grown up hatchback styling.

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In Captur's case styling is a major deterrent in its success. Maruti Suzuki did a correction in pricing and looks to S Cross which did prove to be positive when seeing the sales figures after the face-lift.

Honda;s latest Success:

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Different from other pseudo crosses (Hyundai Active+ Etios Cross+Polo Cross) Honda put more effort while developing the cross-version of the hatchback.
Honda went all out in styling it to the latest trend - SUV like,

While Hyundai and Toyota cross-version only had side cladding, redesigned bumpers and roof rails to appear rugged, Honda redesigned headlamps and tail lamps completely along with the sheet metal in the front and the rear to beef up the stance with increase ground clearance.
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Result is apparent, WRV is lot more expensive than Jazz but it is selling much better too because it is able to offer emotional benefit of C-SUV styling which consumer do value these day.

Honda may bring in a proper 4m-C-SUV in future but currently it is riding on the SUV-craze wave much smoothly with WRV.
Badge engineering/ Cross badging or Platform Sharing all have its share of success. It is purely dependent how it is served to its customers and the efforts put by the manufacturers,

Now all eyes glued to Suzuki - Toyota alliance as both concepts and more are being experimented and how it will create a buzz in the Indian/ Global markets.

Source:based on Auto Punditz report
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