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Old 20th February 2010, 07:54   #136
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Fiat has limited resources at the moment and its best that they continue to support the Linea & Punto via efforts on reconstructing the brand, after-sales, fit & finish, getting rid of niggling issues and bring up overall quality.
Exactly! And adding more engines would increase the complexity at a time when these issues have to first be addressed. Unfortunately, this involves a hard and dedicated slog, that does not have much glamour around it, so most companies in India struggle with this given the national chalta hai approach where 90% is not seen as 10% left undone, and long term solutions are not popular. For instance, in a modern auto, this would involve substantial efforts on vendor shop floors to get their QCD up. I have not seen a lot of Indian managers doing that - sweating it out on vendor shop floors in a partnership to elevate their performance. Most vendor development managers are just renamed purchase managers, beating on vendors for price reductions for most of their time on the job. Or expediting deliveries.
And on the brand subject, there is a lot of putting the cart before the horse in most places - getting a trusted brand in place is a result of being trustworthy in the first place and does not come out of adspend or celebrity endorsements. That can only be icing on the cake. Much needed, but the cake has to be good too.

Last edited by Sawyer : 20th February 2010 at 08:05.
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Old 20th February 2010, 22:32   #137
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Also, for the VW badge what one gets globally is a well screwed together car with quality interiors, and I suspect that the Germans will make sure that they hew to these standards in the Indian Polo as well.
Indian polo version is a joke. Lots of cost cutting.
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Old 21st February 2010, 08:25   #138
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Indian polo version is a joke. Lots of cost cutting.
Why do you say that? Is it because of eliminating features or using substandard materials and build? The first is understandable, the second disappointing. I could accept the first for the price point, but I would expect whatever I do get to be of Polo global standards. If VWI can do that with economical and decent quality service, from what I see of the car till now, and at the prices being talked about, I expect it to be a big success.

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Old 22nd February 2010, 14:30   #139
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The taxi market looks for cars that have space, comfort & cheap running costs more than anything else. This happens to be the USP of most if not all Tata cars. Last on their list comes 'handling' and the 'fun to drive' nature of the car. At the end of the day, Tata Motors is a business unit and how many $$$ come in matters most. So if the taxi market buys their cars or individuals buy their cars the $$$ will keep coming in. Private buyers whose priorities are the same order as mentioned above will also look at Tata cars. With the manza Tata has upped overall quality and it is now on par or better than its competition. The upcoming aria will be a real quality test for Tata
This is true but a short-term outlook. Many car makers have learnt to their cost that selling to rentals or commercial car fleets make bring in $$ in the short-term, but hurts the image and resale value. More prone to break down which is then generalised to the entire model fleet.
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Old 22nd February 2010, 15:22   #140
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The taxi market looks for cars that have space, comfort & cheap running costs more than anything else. This happens to be the USP of most if not all Tata cars. Last on their list comes 'handling' and the 'fun to drive' nature of the car. At the end of the day, Tata Motors is a business unit and how many $$$ come in matters most. So if the taxi market buys their cars or individuals buy their cars the $$$ will keep coming in. Private buyers whose priorities are the same order as mentioned above will also look at Tata cars. With the manza Tata has upped overall quality and it is now on par or better than its competition. The upcoming aria will be a real quality test for Tata
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Originally Posted by vasudeva View Post
This is true but a short-term outlook. Many car makers have learnt to their cost that selling to rentals or commercial car fleets make bring in $$ in the short-term, but hurts the image and resale value. More prone to break down which is then generalised to the entire model fleet.
Where this hurts the most is when you go to the showroom to collect your car after a service and you see more taxi drivers than owners ! They can actually think of having separate service centres for taxi's in big cities.
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Old 22nd February 2010, 16:00   #141
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Where this hurts the most is when you go to the showroom to collect your car after a service and you see more taxi drivers than owners ! They can actually think of having separate service centres for taxi's in big cities.
The problem is not seeing the preponderance of taxi drivers, most people would be ok with that. The problem is that the service set up ends up setting its standards to meet the expectation levels of taxi drivers, and these may not meet expectations of private buyer drivers. The separate service station idea is a good one in theory, but I am not sure how it would work in practice. GMI will soon be in the same boat with the large Tavera sales, but so far they seem to have coped with this issue, but are getting to the edge on it.
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Old 23rd February 2010, 10:44   #142
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GMI will soon be in the same boat with the large Tavera sales, but so far they seem to have coped with this issue, but are getting to the edge on it.
Hardly. If anything, the situation will only get better for GM. Their current sales:

1000 odd Taveras
3,500 Sparks
3,000 Beats
700 Cruze'
200 Optras
100 odd Captivas.

Now, even if we assume that 75% of Tavera customers are from the taxi segment, that's a mere 9% of their total sales.
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Old 23rd February 2010, 11:19   #143
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Hardly. If anything, the situation will only get better for GM. Their current sales:

1000 odd Taveras
3,500 Sparks
3,000 Beats
700 Cruze'
200 Optras
100 odd Captivas.

Now, even if we assume that 75% of Tavera customers are from the taxi segment, that's a mere 9% of their total sales.
Good to know. I was talking from my experience with the Spark service, and being caught up in the Tavera service queues and attention capture because of the large number of long haul Taveras that seem to come in every day. Of course if the car needs to go just twice a year to the service station, as the Spark seems to be able to require, even that is not a big deal. And as long as the service set up remains alive to the different requirements of private customers.
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Old 26th February 2010, 00:30   #144
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Good to know. I was talking from my experience with the Spark service, and being caught up in the Tavera service queues and attention capture because of the large number of long haul Taveras that seem to come in every day. Of course if the car needs to go just twice a year to the service station, as the Spark seems to be able to require, even that is not a big deal. And as long as the service set up remains alive to the different requirements of private customers.
Well I have a different Take on that. Taxi segment Tavera drivers won't really come to GM service station after they are done with the free services, since there would be cheaper service outside GM service network. Whereas Car owners would normally be frequenting to GM Service stations in absence of any Maruti style Authorized service stations. So i think that 9% would drop to less than 4% in actual service station traffic.
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Old 26th February 2010, 01:00   #145
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Just to give a bit of perspective on what Sawyer probably means:
1. Indica has two sets of tubes, one for Taxi market that retails at about 40% less than the normal ones. It only highlights the different demands of the Taxi segment, which the service station (read mechanics) might get too used to.

2. Service staff / Mechanics at Tata Motors A.S.S in Borivali have no uniforms, you can never tell whether a person you are talking to is a real rep or otherwise.

3. The service staff is immune to complains about rattles - they simply refuse to see it as a problem, and if they do acknowledge - the fix is a jugad at best.
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Old 26th February 2010, 10:17   #146
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3. The service staff is immune to complains about rattles - they simply refuse to see it as a problem, and if they do acknowledge - the fix is a jugad at best.
A very good example of one such instance. The Indica taxi driver doesn't care either, so this works fine for them. The problem arises when the larger part of the sales are to this market, when this becomes the normal behaviour, and private customers are put off.
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Old 26th February 2010, 10:42   #147
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A very good example of one such instance. The Indica taxi driver doesn't care either, so this works fine for them. The problem arises when the larger part of the sales are to this market, when this becomes the normal behaviour, and private customers are put off.
Did you read this ? : http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/1747264-post393.html

Hope it changes your opinion
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Old 26th February 2010, 10:47   #148
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Hope it changes your opinion
One swallow does not a summer make.
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Old 26th February 2010, 11:01   #149
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One swallow does not a summer make.
Let me add : we are 100+ Fiat owners on some other group and we have never had the issue you are talking about. yes we do have issues, but not about sharing the service station with taxi drivers

I don't quite think it is appropriate on your part to make sweeping statements about Tata service stations especially when you don't own a Tata or a Fiat car. There are plenty of posts on TBHP where Tata & Fiat owners have had more than satisfactory experiences at the service stations.

There are 136 other "swallows" on TBHP itself who are satisfied with the experience they are getting from Tata Fiat service centres.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...ers-speak.html

Fiat owners have always ben the first to report shortcomings : when that happens people like you say fiat tata service is bad and fiat is doomed. When the same fiat owners report improving service or good service people like you say one swallow does not a summer make. Obviously the problem lies with non-Tata Fiat owners and not Tata Fiat owners

Also it's pretty amazing that you have made statements elsewhere on this website that you will never buy a Tata car in your life but you make it a point to bash them whenever you get the chance.

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Old 26th February 2010, 11:13   #150
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I agree, many non FIAT people bash the brand and the service. I am servicing my car since last 3 years at BUB (TATA-FIAT) dealer and never faced a problem. FIAT has its own section for servicing cars. Every brand A** has some problem or the other. We should not blow it out of proportion. We have seen people reporting problems on Skoda, Audi, FIAT, TATA and few other manufactueres but please if YOU DO NOT OWN the vehicle of a particular brand dont keep doing the bad publicity unless you are paid for it
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