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Old 23rd March 2010, 21:54   #1
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Default Why "Volvo" cars are not mentioned in most luxury car discussions

This is a general discussion regarding an observation about luxury cars available in India.
I live in Scandinavia and can see a good following for Volvo cars here. Going through most discussions regarding luxury cars available in India and being discussed in the forum, I note that "Volvo" cars are conspicously absent. Are S40, S60 and S80 no match to the continental competitors like Audi, BMW or Merc?
I am very much impressed with Volvo cars and would like to have one when back in India.
So, I am hoping to hear expert opinions from widely experienced team-bhp family. :-)
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Old 23rd March 2010, 23:57   #2
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The main reason why volvo cars are not taken in same breathe as the german trio is because:
1.The brand awareness of volvo is not very high in India.
2.Volvo does not have an USP per se,for eg like we associate BMW with driving pleasure,Audi with technology and Merc with well the 3 pointed star,volvo has not been able to create a niche for itself.Across the world volvo is synonymous with safety,that does not work well in India
3.Also maybe the designs are a bit on the bland side(although the new s60 looks brilliant).
4.Very low dealership coverage in India.

All said and done Volvo does make brilliant cars,but sadly they are just not clicking in India.
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Old 24th March 2010, 00:26   #3
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Quote:
Across the world volvo is synonymous with safety,that does not work well in India
Where's the weeping in absolute despair smiley?

Their other European USP used to be reliability, especially reliability in bad, frozen weather. I guess that was before the Japanese made reliability "normal" for a car!

Oh, and longevity. The cars my parents used to buy in UK forty or so years ago used to rust away astonishingly quickly: you never saw rust on a Volvo!
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Old 24th March 2010, 01:34   #4
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yeah i really hope the new s60 hots things up cause sure does look sexy
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Old 24th March 2010, 01:58   #5
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Perceived brand value is very important for luxury car buyers in India and the Volvo is known in India as a maker of luxury buses and part owner of Eicher CV.

In India, they can be called "Stealth Luxury". You may want the luxury and the comforts but if you don't want to shout it aloud, this is the car for you. Something similar seems to apply to Nissan's current offering, the Teana.

The "Stealth" part seems to apply to dealers too, because you can hardly see any of them.
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Old 24th March 2010, 09:50   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
Their other European USP used to be reliability, especially reliability in bad, frozen weather. I guess that was before the Japanese made reliability "normal" for a car!

Oh, and longevity. The cars my parents used to buy in UK forty or so years ago used to rust away astonishingly quickly: you never saw rust on a Volvo!
True. Volvo has this website where their owners post the number of miles on their Volvo and the longevity is astonishing.

Would it be fair to say that if you want the 'thunk' as well as reliability, a Volvo is the way to go?
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Old 24th March 2010, 12:03   #7
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I think the major reason for Volv's low numbers in India is primarily due to less brand awareness. People buying cars in the 30L+ segment want a certain degree of snob value and the "ahh" factor from other which is absent for Volvo.

Personally I love volvo especially the V70 in the present gen.
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Old 24th March 2010, 13:35   #8
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In addition to avishar's points:
Very low visibility (advertising) and brand awareness; For e.g: many in Trivandrum, Kerala are aware about the presence of Audi, BMW, Merc in Cochin; only a few were aware about the presence of Volvo in Cochin till the city hosted the Volvo ocean race.

Having that said, the very action of bracketing Volvo along with Audi/Beemer/Merc/Jaguar is debatable, isn't it?
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Old 24th March 2010, 14:12   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandeepmdas View Post
Having that said, the very action of bracketing Volvo along with Audi/Beemer/Merc/Jaguar is debatable, isn't it?
Why would you say that? Aren't they equally refined and luxurious? Just curious.
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Old 24th March 2010, 14:31   #10
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Originally, Volvo's selling point was not luxury --- but safety and reliability. The 1960/70s cars that I remember were, in many respects, rather boring. The classic Volvo Estate had all the design flair of a wardrobe on wheels.
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Old 24th March 2010, 14:43   #11
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There are also too many Volvo buses running here. Even regular buses sometimes have a Volvo sticker at the back. Many of these buses are badly maintained. This has diluted their brand to some extent.
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Old 24th March 2010, 14:44   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
Originally, Volvo's selling point was not luxury --- but safety and reliability. The 1960/70s cars that I remember were, in many respects, rather boring. The classic Volvo Estate had all the design flair of a wardrobe on wheels.
May be I'm in minority here but love the Volvo 740 Estates especially their no nonsense straight designs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilead View Post
There are also too many Volvo buses running here. Even regular buses sometimes have a Volvo sticker at the back. Many of these buses are badly maintained. This has diluted their brand to some extent.
By that logic, Mercedes should not have launched their bus series and should also drop plains for their Actross. Extending it further, TATA as a CV manufacturer shouldnot bought JLR as no body would buy them

Last edited by MileCruncher : 24th March 2010 at 14:49.
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Old 24th March 2010, 14:57   #13
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MileCruncher, I am yet to see a Mercedes bus on the road. And ask anyone about Mercedes and the first thing that comes to mind is a luxury car, not a CV. It's the other way around for Volvo. And the JLR cars don't say Tata at the back do they?
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Old 24th March 2010, 15:09   #14
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As far as India is concerned - Luxury is MBA - Mercs, Beemers & Audi (now)! These will always be the first preference for the upwardly mobile, recently affluent and old monies.

It will always be a select niche customer which will pick a Volvo over a BMW or a Jaguar over the Benz.

Whoever said 'The Japanese made 'reliability' standard' - hit the nail on the head!

Nobody here would pick a Volvo over its german counterparts - anybody care to disagree? Scandinavian dude doesn't count!

- ps which scandinavian country do you live in Rahulch?
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Old 24th March 2010, 15:20   #15
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The state of the Volvo has been limited to the luxury bus in India. A common man will know Volvo as a bus.

We are now very happy to travel in a Volvo bus because of the comfort, sturdiness and safety.

Guess the company did not market the brand beyond this.
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