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Old 30th April 2010, 10:49   #1
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Default Toyota suspends Fortuner bookings. EDIT : Reopens in Jan 2011

Came across this news.

Source : Toyota suspends booking of Fortuner in India

Article :

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Toyota suspends booking of Fortuner in India
NEW DELHI: Japanese auto giant Toyota said it has suspended bookings for its sports utility vehicle Fortuner till July in India in order to clear backlog of bookings.

The move comes at a time when the company's Indian subsidiary Toyota Kirloskar Motor is undertaking an exercise to change faulty brake kits of the vehicle following complaints from 220 customers.

"The average waiting period for the SUV Fortuner is around six months and we have closed bookings as we do not want our customers to wait. We will re-start bookings in June -July once we are able to clear the backlog," Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) Deputy Managing Director Sandeep Singh said.

Launched in August last year, the Fortuner has received robust response from the market and has so far sold around 6,500 units. The company had increased production to more than 950 vehicles per month from the initial 500 units per month.

The company said its suspension of bookings will continue until the time when the waiting period comes down to three months. As of date the company has pending order of over 6,000 units.

TKM also said it is rectifying brake problems on the vehicle based on customer feedback on a case-to-case basis as some of the customers, especially those who shift from sedans and MUVs to the Fortuner, a four wheel drive, may feel the brakes to be a little different because the actual performance will be a different from what they may be used to.

"Therefore, in order to improve customer satisfaction we are only modifying or improving the brakes, therefore this is not a recall. We have received 220 customer feedback till date," a company spokesperson said.

Commenting on the hybrid car Prius, Singh said TKM plans to sell 200 units in India this year and has already received 80 bookings for the vehicle.

Prius, the best-selling hybrid from Toyota's stable, was introduced in India in January and it is touting it as its test vehicle for the alternative fuel technology in India.

"We have a long waiting period of 3-4 months for the car from Japan. For this year, we have ordered a consignment of 200 units and have already lined up the month-wise dispatch figures," Singh said, adding TKM has delivered 12 units of the car in the Indian market since its launch.

"Besides, we have already received over 80 bookings for the car. Our share under the global quota for Prius this year is 200 units," he added.

Prius is imported from Japan as completely built units and is available in India in two variants at a price range of Rs 26.55 lakh to Rs 27.86 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
1) IMHO, this is bad move. Toyota is the only manufacturer apart from Suzuki that can afford these waiting periods. Is it that they cannot produce more than 950 units of Fortuner ? Fortuner shares many parts with Innova, so this is not an excuse they can give.

2) IIRC, Fortuner is not manufactured in India, but is rather brought as CKD. But still I cannot digest the fact that Toyota can only give out 950 Fortuners a month.

Around 5K Innova, 900 units of Altis a month = 70,800 units/annum.

If honestly they are handicapped due to production capacity, then after launch they should have increased production to more than 950. I know its not easy but asking customers to wait for 6 months in too much.

The lack of proper competition allows manufacturers to do this. Just think for a moment, would situation be similar if we had GV diesel and a better engined Pajero ?

3) Can they afford to make similar statements in US ?

PS : I am totally against waiting periods for cars. Be it Swift or Fortuner or any other exotic.

Last edited by aaggoswami : 30th April 2010 at 11:02.
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Old 30th April 2010, 11:03   #2
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This is the time for competition to up the ante.

Ford/GM/Mitsubishi/Mahindra/Tata, are you listening?

Quote:
Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
2) IIRC, Fortuner is not manufactured in India, but is rather brought as CKD. But still I cannot digest the fact that Toyota can only give out 950 Fortuners a month.

Around 5K Innova, 900 units of Altis a month = 70,800 units/annum.
AFAIK, Fortuner and Innova share lots in common.

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Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
The lack of proper competition allows manufacturers to do this. Just think for a moment, would situation be similar if we had GV diesel and a better engined Pajero ?
Exactly my point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
3) Can they afford to make similar statements in US ?
Toyota is often mentioned as a premium brand by many India. Considering that, I would say that they will get away with such statements.
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Old 30th April 2010, 11:16   #3
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In my opinion, TOYOTA was a premium brand: no more!

Firstly they should be ashamed for launching a super priced "innova on stilts" without proper braking abilities for a alltime 4X4

Now this. Toyota has become extremely complacent and over confident in its business. The downturn starts now!!
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Old 30th April 2010, 11:28   #4
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I hate to say this, but having a long waiting period actually works in their favour and increases the sales, because of the herd mentality of the average ignorant Indian car buyer.

How many times have we heard people saying - there is a 6 months waiting period for this model, must be a damn good car if so many people are willing to wait.

Also having a long waiting period takes away any bargaining power from the customer. The sales rep would simply reply - best selling model sir, long waiting period, no discount.

Rohan
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Old 30th April 2010, 11:38   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by getsurya View Post
In my opinion, TOYOTA was a premium brand: no more!
Sorry, it still is and it will be. Just refer to the below thread
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/intern...els-us-15.html

See the comments from Toyota fanboys. They classify the recall as "Epitome of courage", "Supreme guts" etc etc. And finally the news ->
Toyota expected to pay 16.4 million-dollar fine - International Business - Biz - The Times of India
gulfnews : Toyota agrees to pay $16.4m fine: US official

Quoted from the news article "By paying the full civil penalty Toyota is accepting responsibility for hiding the safety defect ... in violation of the law" (In plain English = cheating!)

In a country where Brand = God, the manufacturers have the upper hand. They can do whatever they want.
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Old 30th April 2010, 11:56   #6
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I think it is good move to suspend booking if they are not able to meed the demand. Once booked usually customer do not want to wait until 6 month and do call often to know the status.

Also if Toyota does not have the capacity to produce for the demand, and still they force to produce the numbers, then there could be chances of lack of quality. So overall I feel it is better to say NO then Sorry.
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:02   #7
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I think Ford will start selling more Endeavours now. It has the road presence similar to that of Fortuner.
Wish Vitara had a diesel engine !!... It would have taken the most advantage of this situation.
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:08   #8
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First, the 6 month waiting period and now no bookings at all!!
How do people manage to hold that "kick" of owning/driving a new car for half a year?? I can stand a waiting period of a maximum of 2 to 2.5 months, after that the whole feeling would fade away.....

@ A350XWB: I think getsurya was talking of Toyota as a premium brand in India. And I reciprocate his thoughts that they're slowly losing their touch!!
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:22   #9
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In my view this will only benefit dealers by giving them a chance to black market.

Some politicians and influential people will now get their cars by arm twisting and sell them by quoting a premium of a few lakhs.

For them it will be another opportunity to make some more black money. Exploitation of Supply shortfall, just the way they do in real estate.

Fortuner was already getting around 3 lakhs worth of premium in black market.

As a company who cares about moral responsibility to its customers should not take such unfortunate steps.

Last edited by pb10gagan : 30th April 2010 at 12:25.
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:30   #10
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I have always foudn long waiting periods for cars ridiculous.

I mean, its not like a custom built TVR or something, but for a car like the Swift Diesel, Dezire etc, you got to be kidding.

I would put down my money on a car, and wait for 6-8-12 months for a car, and during the course of waiting I may actually loose interest in the car, or worse something better may be launched.

Initially, despite the ugly looks etc, I wanted to buy the Dezire ZXI, but both Pasco as well as another dealer in Gurgaon gave me a one year waiting period. End of story, end of dezire, as I had not desire to wait

My close friend, recently wanted to go in for a Fortuner and was ready to pay close to 2 Lacs for getting it faster, but the sales guys said that there as no chance at all. But anyways, in the end he bought a top of the line white accord (He also owns a BMW 3 series, a Corolla, i10, Skoda and was also contemplating exchanging his 3 series for a 6 series)

Last edited by thedreamcatcher : 30th April 2010 at 12:32.
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:30   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rohan_iitr View Post
I hate to say this, but having a long waiting period actually works in their favour and increases the sales, because of the herd mentality of the average ignorant Indian car buyer.
I disagree with you mate!

IMHO, I don't think an average Indian would opt for a SUV with a price of 20+ lacs!! Plus an average Indian never has a herd mentality, cause they wouldn't want to put their hard earned money on some car just because there is a long waiting period!! Just my opinion mate, nothing against you!!

Plus having a long waiting period alone doesn't guarantee a top notch product!
A friend of mine recently bought a new Ford Fiesta. Before buying it he wanted to get the Swift Dzire, but eventually backed out and got the Ford Fiesta due to the damn long waiting time of 6 months for the Dzire!
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:36   #12
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Quote:
The move comes at a time when the company's Indian subsidiary Toyota Kirloskar Motor is undertaking an exercise to change faulty brake kits of the vehicle following complaints from 220 customers.
Quote:
"Therefore, in order to improve customer satisfaction we are only modifying or improving the brakes, therefore this is not a recall. We have received 220 customer feedback till date," a company spokesperson said.
Umm : is this spokesperson trying to say that there is actually nothing wrong with the brakes and they are doing it ONLY to improve customer satisfaction ?
So ONLY those who complain get better brakes ? It sounds like that since he says it is NOT a recall. Amazing that a company that talks so much about quality says this !! And I thought Toyota was proactive !! Am I the only one seeing this ? Or am I missing something here ?

Last edited by amoghchaphalkar : 30th April 2010 at 12:41.
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:47   #13
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After seeing the waiting periods it looks like we are marching backwards. Technology and manufacturing processes have developed so much still companies cant produce cars to meet market demands.
I believe it is we who are not allowing companies to improve.We are ready to accept what they offers and never try to question.It is a pathetic state of affairs that Toyota has to stop taking bookings to clear the backlog.

Shame on you TOYOTA.
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Old 30th April 2010, 12:53   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rohan_iitr View Post
I hate to say this, but having a long waiting period actually works in their favour and increases the sales, because of the herd mentality of the average ignorant Indian car buyer. How many times have we heard people saying - there is a 6 months waiting period for this model, must be a damn good car if so many people are willing to wait.

Also having a long waiting period takes away any bargaining power from the customer. The sales rep would simply reply - best selling model sir, long waiting period, no discount.

Rohan
Exactly what happened to me at Honda City. I got told the same words by the sales person. Herd Mentality is the right word in many (not all) cases of high flying brand in India.
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Old 30th April 2010, 13:18   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pb10gagan View Post
In my view this will only benefit dealers by giving them a chance to black market.

Some politicians and influential people will now get their cars by arm twisting and sell them by quoting a premium of a few lakhs.

For them it will be another opportunity to make some more black money. Exploitation of Supply shortfall, just the way they do in real estate.

Fortuner was already getting around 3 lakhs worth of premium in black market.

As a company who cares about moral responsibility to its customers should not take such unfortunate steps.
I thought the objective of this move is quite the opposite. Rather than taking bookings with inability to deliver leading to grey-market premiums, it has clearly spelt out that its not taking bookings - thereby closing it off.
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