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Old 18th March 2008, 16:59   #76
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Originally Posted by suman View Post
Amit, excellent perspectives. But doesn't address the basic question does it?
suman, I am not sure how to answer the question asked in this thread.

Why would you not buy a Fiat?

Do I have to answer this question as a prospecitve new car buyer? Thats what I think the thread starter is trying to ask. A 'prospective new car buyer' will always be swayed by opinions of his relatives and friends. I do agree that a new car is the second biggest investment anyone makes after a house and therefore, people would want to make the safest decision. I believe thats why Fiat loses out. Stand on any busy intersection for 30 minutes and see how many Swift's, Santro's you can count and how many Palio's you can count. For most people, more sales = good quality. Thats not true. I know that from experience.

We, on this forum , have seen the niggling problems in both the Swift and the SX4, yet Maruti finds it difficult to fulfill demand. I never understood why niggling problems in a Swift or SX4 fails to dent the sales, but a few problems in the Palio results in a sensex like crash in it's sales? Why niggling problems in a Swift/SX4 is termed minor issues and the same in the Palio is a major issue. Is it because the Swift/SX4 are Marutis? Is it because they are new cars? Is it because they have ABS, Air Bags, climate control at value prices? Or is it because they have digital trip/odo meters?

Last edited by amit : 18th March 2008 at 17:01.
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Old 18th March 2008, 17:02   #77
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Originally Posted by amit View Post
Why niggling problems in a Swift/SX4 is termed minor niggling problems and the same in the Palio is a major issue. Is it because the Swift/SX4 are Marutis?
I believe you may have answered your own question.

Its something similar to "Lousy & expensive Ford A.S.S" that we keep hearing about. But that's another subject altogether.
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Old 18th March 2008, 17:05   #78
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someone close this thread its making me sick :(
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Old 18th March 2008, 17:11   #79
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Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post
I just found one more reason why I would not buy a Fiat - my father just threw the idea out.
I guess you didnt even bother to ask him why
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Old 18th March 2008, 17:34   #80
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Originally Posted by amit View Post
We, on this forum , have seen the niggling problems in both the Swift and the SX4, yet Maruti finds it difficult to fulfill demand. I never understood why niggling problems in a Swift or SX4 fails to dent the sales, but a few problems in the Palio results in a sensex like crash in it's sales? Why niggling problems in a Swift/SX4 is termed minor issues and the same in the Palio is a major issue. Is it because the Swift/SX4 are Marutis? Is it because they are new cars? Is it because they have ABS, Air Bags, climate control at value prices? Or is it because they have digital trip/odo meters?

Let me try answering this from my point of view:

Issues like these do not matter for average buyer. We see mention of these because this is a car-enthusiast 's forum.

I was not aware of any of these issues till started reading up on net for user feedback. And I doubt average buyer does that.

For an average buyer like me, things like A.S.S ( inclusive of attitude of Dealer / Service center personnel), Trust that they will get support for the car, matter.

And thats where FIAT gets a beating (Since it is not perceived as company with customer friendly dealer/service network).
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Old 18th March 2008, 17:52   #81
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I feel its a story of 'Grapes are sour.. ' many people here always wanted to buy a Fiat - Palio, but were not confident enough or Passionate enough and then they decided on something else.. Now find a reason and tell people why you did not buy a Fiat... Just to convince yourself that you did the right thing..
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Old 18th March 2008, 18:01   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amit View Post
suman, I am not sure how to answer the question asked in this thread.

Why would you not buy a Fiat?

Do I have to answer this question as a prospecitve new car buyer? Thats what I think the thread starter is trying to ask. A 'prospective new car buyer' will always be swayed by opinions of his relatives and friends. I do agree that a new car is the second biggest investment anyone makes after a house and therefore, people would want to make the safest decision. I believe thats why Fiat loses out. Stand on any busy intersection for 30 minutes and see how many Swift's, Santro's you can count and how many Palio's you can count. For most people, more sales = good quality. Thats not true. I know that from experience.

We, on this forum , have seen the niggling problems in both the Swift and the SX4, yet Maruti finds it difficult to fulfill demand. I never understood why niggling problems in a Swift or SX4 fails to dent the sales, but a few problems in the Palio results in a sensex like crash in it's sales? Why niggling problems in a Swift/SX4 is termed minor issues and the same in the Palio is a major issue. Is it because the Swift/SX4 are Marutis? Is it because they are new cars? Is it because they have ABS, Air Bags, climate control at value prices? Or is it because they have digital trip/odo meters?
Your perspective is right.

Indians are price conscious and Maruti has made full use of it with mileage (lighter japanese engine in tin sheets), features, economies of scale and intelligent marketing. An average indian buyer does not care about build quality, acceleration figures, undersized tyres etc.

Getting it right first time is very important for any business/ manufacturer. Once the damage is done by word of mouth publicity it is very difficult to get back. Changing brand image is a difficult task. Lets hope Fiat will be successful there and they would not compromise on the quality. Bring on Fiat Punto!!
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Old 18th March 2008, 18:08   #83
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Dont you all think the discussion is only about Palio Vs the rest?

That is FIAT => Palio. Rather Palio => FIAT.

In this case, the whole debate looks like one car model Vs all other.

And apparently that is the case.

Isn't it an unfair debate?
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Old 18th March 2008, 18:27   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post
I just found one more reason why I would not buy a Fiat - my father just threw the idea out.
If you were referring to my post, I didnt mean to say that I wouldnt buy a FIAT. I would still take the risk and buy the 1.6 just for the performance...
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Old 18th March 2008, 18:35   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanjaymugur View Post
that said, brazil being a developing country like us ( one of BRICKS) has a far better FIAT loyalty than in INDIA...

something to do with the crowd here...
atleast, expect 10% of people to show class..
What exactly are you trying to prove by posting figures of Fiat's Brazil's sales in this thread?? Just what the hell is the connection between Fiat Brazil's sales & Fiat India's sales.

And the crowd HERE has more class than you can ever imagine. Please mind your language.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vikram_madan View Post
Samyak carried out the entire job, & i need to write words of gratitude
for not only Mr. Mangesh but Mr.O.P.Sharma( Samyak) as well.So next time
anyone of you in the NCR have to go for repairs, Samyak is a thousand
times better place.
Vikram - When the Palio was recently launched my best friend had picked up a 1.2 for his father. That car was bought from Samyak itself. In those days (2002 I think) Samyak's dealership was temporarily suspended as he was found to be selling the OE spec tyres in the market & fitting the new cars with an inferior brand.

If they've improved from those days, good for them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pal-leo View Post
Now find a reason and tell people why you did not buy a Fiat... Just to convince yourself that you did the right thing..
Look at it from the "Others" point of view, you bought something with your hard-earned money which is now worth peanuts in value, you were shafted by the company's service & attitude & now you need to justify your purchase to others. Maybe your comments are just that, justification to prove that what you did was the right thing.

IMO which I expressed in one of the other threads discussing one of their upcoming launches (Don't remember whether it was the GP or the Linea) this is what they need to do:

1. Improve Dealership/Service experience to levels better than those of Maruti/Honda. It is not going to be easy but needs to be done considering the segment & pricing they are aiming for. TATA might get away with lower standards of service to their Indica/Indigo customers but rest assured those standards will piss off Fiat owners like they do even now.

2. Pricing is absolutely crucial to ensure Fiat's continued survival in the market. More investment, new plant, new products is all fine but if the product doesn't sell & you don't make a profit, there's no sugar daddy who's gonna bank roll you forever.

3. Bring latest products with the best possible tech so that buyers at least get enticed to visit the showroom & check the product out rather than dismissing it outright as is currently the situation.

4. Publicity, Publicity, Publicity. They need to really bring a blitz to the market when they launch a new product & then sustain it like what they did in the initial days of the Palio. If the buyer doesn't know about a product, how is he going to buy it?
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Old 18th March 2008, 18:44   #86
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Thumbs up Satisfied till now

My association with FIAT is only 4.5 months old as a customer (not counting my father's Premier Padmini). And I am a satisfied customer till now. I had a few issues related to the delay in delivery of the car, but FIAT officials up the ladder took care of everything.

I even had a mishap and had to replace one of the doors. Service advisor advised me to drive the car until parts arrive, and within 4-5 days all the ordered parts were with them. Workshop took 2 days to repair and insurance was settled cashless without any hassles.

While I was deciding to buy a hatch that can pull 5 adults weighing 80 kgs each with AC on without a glitch, there was no option other than Stile 1.6. Everyone was against my decision, be it my friends or my parents. But none were the Fiat owners and their opinions were based on hearsay.

Now coming to the question, whether I would go for a Fiat, I had accompanied my cousin to the dealership today to get him a Palio Stile 1.6 booked!
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Old 18th March 2008, 18:57   #87
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iraghava : I do believe your worst fears have come true. You did , after all, start a slanging match.

This thread was started in the right spirit but it has now become personal.

IMHO, we need to involve the Fiat and Tata CEOs about what went wrong where. It's useless to fight amongst ourselves while the top bosses are least bothered about their reputation and sales figures.
If at all they were really concerned, things wouldn't have come to this stage.
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Old 18th March 2008, 19:17   #88
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Guys,

From experience, I should have known that this thread will ruffle a few feathers. My intention of starting this thread was very simple:

1. My first car was a M800 back in the 90s, because everyone had a M800 and it was a used car anyway.

2. When I moved to Australia, I first bought a Mitsubishi Colt (Used again), just to get a feel of driving in Australia.

3. Once confident, I bought a BMW 323i - had always dreamt of owning a BMW

Back in India, I wanted a car. I did not want anything Japanese but wanted only European. BMW was way over my affordability. What choices did I have? Even while trying to evaluate, I got a chance to take care of my friend's S10 and that was the deciding factor.

However, to be honest, I had a niggling doubt in the corner of my mind as to AS&S and spares availability for FIAT. But my heart won the battle and I bought the PALIO STILE SLX in December. I dont care much for resale value. In my opinion, if I spent 5 lakhs on this car and sold it for 1.5 lakhs after a few years, but still felt bad parting with it, then I have spent my money wisely.

As many of you may be aware, I have had the car for 3 months, too small a period for me to do any proper evaluation. But I have done 8000 kms in these 3 months and every time I pick up my keys, I am eager to get behind the wheels of this subtle beauty. While I am not a fanatic FIAT fan, I do love the engineering that is behind this car. At the same time I am mature enough not to bad mouth other cars, just because others say so. I have not posted even a single post bad mouthing other cars.

As an ex-BMW owner, I can confidently state that this car is as nice to drive albeit in a much lower class.

By this statement, I am not trying to compare FIAT with BMW, so please do not debate that point.

After 3 months and 8000 kms of trouble free driving, I am a little worried about spares availabilty. Posts claiming that FIAT cars have had to be grounded for months on end to procure spares are not very encouraging either. The idea behind this post was to get honest opinions from fellow BHPians about their perspective and that has been forth coming to a great extent.

Thanks,

Rajan
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Old 18th March 2008, 19:18   #89
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I usually never get into a FIAT fight except to say that a Palio ICEs very well

My perspective is a little different. I love my 2002 Palio 1.2. I don't love it because it is a FIAT: I just love it for what it is.

I like driving it, I like sitting in it, I like the ride, I like the way it handles, I like the way it feels solid and planted even at 100kmph plus. I like the way it looks, the way it does not rattle (very few rattles now, after 5 years). I like it for all this (and some more) and NOT because it is a FIAT.

I paid 4.3L for it on the road, and I did not find a single car I liked at that time for that money. Granted, I was stupid enough not to get the 1.6 then (money was dear), but I still love my Palio: For what it is. I'd still love it if it had been made by Maruti or Hyundai or anybody.

Being a FIAT does not give any brownie point to any car in my book. Not does it get any black marks. I think it is the car that mostly matters, and not the manufacturer. But, the manufacturer does matter when it comes to A.S.S.

Though I'm fed up with the A.S.S. (both TVS-wallah and TATA-wallah), I must say I have not had to really suffer the way I've heard about some people suffer. I've paid a lot of money to service my car -- a lot more that most others might have had to. I don't have any figures with me, so I'll leave it at that.

Like TSK1979, mileage has been inherently low in my case too. I used to get 10 to 12KMPL in the city and 14KMPL on highways when the car was totally stock. After I added fatter tyres (205 section) and a K&N stock replacement filter, mileage dropped to 8-9kmpl city and 10-11kmpl highway. I still love my car (I don't drive a lot -- I've done just 45K in 5.5 years). I added a K&N Appollo CAI a month back and mileage is now 6-7 city (and wait for this), 16kmpl highway. My driving style has become more aggressive over the years and this may have contributed to the fall in mileage to some extent. I still love my car.

The only 3 reasons I'm still hanging on to my Palio (after the 5-year mark) are:
1) I still love my car and it will be hard to let her go.
2) I will get close to nothing as resale.
3) I still haven't found a car in the 6L to 6.5L bracket that will make me want to replace her. No car in this range has me dreaming about owning it. My Palio is still my baby. (I'm not going to spend more than 6.5L plus 20% maybe on my next car -- money is still dear).

I think that the Grande Punto will display the same qualities that have made me like my Palio. I'd have really stretched myself for the Grande Punto when it comes out (even at say 7.5L), but I do not want a repeat of my A.S.S. experience. I don't think I will buy the G-P. Only because of the A.S.S. NOT because of resale, but only because of A.S.S. After checking it out, if I like it, I will lust for it, I will dream about it, but I don't think I will buy it.

So as to not break my tradition, I still assert that the Palio ICEs like magic.
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Old 18th March 2008, 19:25   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codemarauder View Post
I had a few issues related to the delay in delivery of the car, but FIAT officials up the ladder took care of everything.

I even had a mishap and had to replace one of the doors. Service advisor advised me to drive the car until parts arrive, and within 4-5 days all the ordered parts were with them. Workshop took 2 days to repair and insurance was settled cashless without any hassles.
FIAT needs to keep doing for as most of the customer for a few years. That should take care of perception.
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