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Old 4th August 2011, 00:12   #31
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Quite touching. I love Fiat's cars too. Even my Mom swears by them thanks to our Premier Padmini days

I doubt if it's only advertising which would help Fiat. I fail to understand why Fiat is sleeping over the 1.6 l diesel engine, for one. Not to forget their absolute lack of cars to sell - practically only 2 cars today even after spending donkey's years in India.

Of course, they take constructive feedback and implement it too, like shedding weight in the Linea - but then they conveniently forget to communicate it to the masses.

Who can help them, this way? My kids will never get to see a Fiat run on Indian roads if Fiat keeps up these type of absurd strategies!
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Old 4th August 2011, 00:20   #32
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

I cannot agree more ChiffHanger, you have put everything right there. It pains to see such a marvellous brand suffer this way .....especially if you look at the products they have.

**Fiat Sit up and take notice!!! Are you listening??**
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Old 4th August 2011, 00:24   #33
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

Buland Bharat Ki Buland Tasweer, Hamara Bajaj, Hamara Bajaj DID wonders for Bajaj, 'India comes home in a Maruti' literally made every Maruti owner relate to it, I don't see why Fiat can't do something of a similar sort or maybe they are just not interested in increasing their numbers.
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Old 4th August 2011, 00:25   #34
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

Emotions only wont work for long and I am not sure if at all they will work for India given the current state of Fiat in India.
Before playing with emotions, what Fiat needs to work upon is TRUST.
What was reason for Santro' s success ?
IMO: 1) Feel more like Maruti and 2) Pricing.

That is how they have built trust. The initial hype of having a better car than Zen was started by Uno. That did not happen, and Santro was extremely lucky to have got all the attention given to Uno + more attention. The hype and enthusiasm of Uno and gap created by Uno was finally used by Santro. Hyundai sure did capitalize a lot with this, but its another story. I am mentioning the story here because lack of Uno entering into market after booking lead to lack of Trust in Fiat brand.

Fiat needs to address the trust ( or rather, lack of trust ) issue from the root. For that a car smaller than the current Punto becomes necessity IMO. Palio has a tarnished image of low FE car. A brand new car which is contemporary and efficient.

  • Own dealer network for Fiat
  • More service centers
  • Focus on core strengths like solid build and dynamics
  • Bring one competitor below Punto
  • Build trust by various means like special programs for Fiat owners, second hand car network ( like Maruti True value ), etc.
  • Marketing with core strenghts in mind. I have seen Linea ad. and to say the least, even City ad was better. Take a cue from Bajaj 220's ad campaigns.
VW sells less not because of price or acute shortage, but rather trust that people are not having specially in hatchback segment. Long term ownership will truly tell if Indian car buyers have deep trust or not. Even Tata is losing due to loss of trust thanks to bad A.S & S.
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Old 4th August 2011, 00:35   #35
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

Fiat has recently tried to its level best (T-Jet) but the results were not satisfactory. It is not because their cars are bad. It is because their cars lack the primary requirements of Indian customers. In India if you need to be successful, there are 3 things you need to look for.
  • Space
  • Interiors
  • FE
And these are where Fiat has failed miserably. Even the best offering from Fiat (T-Jet) comes with interiors that look a few generations old. It does not have the quality of materials or plastics that needs to be there in the segment. The fit and finish is way below par.

The next drawback is simply being overweight. Being lighter not only helps in achieving better FE but also improves performance. Most of the fiat cars are the slowest of the lot. Be it Punto 1.2P or 1.3D. Be it Linea 1.4P or 1.3D.

The A.S.S in NCR in below par. I dont have any Fiat only service centre nearby. Whatever service centers I have nearby is below par.

What Fiat needs to do.
  • Better interiors (way better)
  • 1.6L Mjd
  • AMC (similar to what GM provides)
Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
Palio has a tarnished image of low FE car. A brand new car which is contemporary and efficient.
Sure it has. I get 8kmpl.

Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
  • Own dealer network for Fiat
  • More service centers
This is a very costly proposal. I doubt if it will be feasible.

Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
  • Focus on core strengths like solid build and dynamics
Who the hell cares about handling and built.(But I do) the requirement is to get the car lighter.

Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post
  • Bring one competitor below Punto
And price is extremely competitive.

Last edited by oxyzen : 4th August 2011 at 00:42.
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Old 4th August 2011, 00:40   #36
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

What's the way forward ?
Junk Tata and do it alone. Most Fiat guys are cheesed off by the reception (or lack of it) that they get at Tata dealerships, where Fiat is treated as a burden that has to be carried.

BTW, I recommended a Fiat last week and a colleague now owns the Punto-90HP. His needs seemed to point towards this car and so...

Originally Posted by CliffHanger
I just sold off my Punto. Of all the cars we owned, Punto was easily the best. When I decide on my next car, and if Fiat has an offering in that segment, I will definitely go for Fiat with eyes shut. Such was the ownership experience. Have driven a plethora of cars, but they were are all just cars. Nothing came close to a Fiat.
I saw this post of yours on the July-sales thread. Wanted to comment there, but was sure it would not only take the thread OT, but would create a riot.

But on this thread, I guess we can discuss this. What were the other cars you owned in the same segment as the Punto ? I assume it was the Punto_D that you owned. If Yes, I fail to understand your emotions. I had a friend's Punto-D for 3 days and 250kms and I frankly did not see anything in it to make it a cult car. The 2 things I noticed were the heavy doors and the fact that in 5th gear, it could go infinitely without A-pedal input. Other than that, it was a sluggish car, ergonomics messed up and just about average. If you had a petrol, then yes, I could be missing stuff.
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Old 4th August 2011, 01:00   #37
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

Can there be a better advertisement than this The others which you have mentioned are run of the mill stuff.

The way forward for them has been discussed to a certain extent over here http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...y-forward.html (Tata Fiat passenger car JV-the way forward) Quite a few suggestions I must say.
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Old 4th August 2011, 01:37   #38
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

If and a BIG IF, Fiat wants to make it in India, they need to replace their entire marketing team, with the fanboys from T-BHP (me included ) The passion I have seen for the brand and its products out here is what is required in Fiat India.
I love the Fiat Adventure, and was hoping the Punto would chnage the fortunes for the company. But guess what, there was more buzz on the various threads, than there was at the unveiling of the Punto.

Very disappointed with Fiat, for an Italian Company, there is no passione, or maybe they have been told to just make our national engine - The Multijet (Sure is more profitable)

All the Best Fiat, Some us here really wish you do well
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Old 4th August 2011, 01:42   #39
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

FIAT doesn't know how to market their cars. Period. May be in Italy people buy cars just by looking at it and admiring it, but in India it doesn't work that way.

I agree with CliffHanger, whatever little ad campaigns FIAT had, didn't connect emotionally with the masses. Also it's important to create ads which connect with everyone in the family and more importantly the female members. None of the ad campaigns had this.
Secondly, it's important to highlight USPs of your cars. There was absolutely no marketing whatsoever about some of the features in the cars. Take Blue&Me for example, how difficult is it to create an ad showing this? In contrast, a Figo ad showed exactly this though Punto/Linea had this feature (and much more) before this!

Coming to the actual sales process, there seems to be right intent at the top level (at least that's what it seems like), but at ground level it isn't so. When I bought my Punto, it was a case of me buying it than the dealer selling it to me. You can't sell cars if your dealers have this attitude. May be it's the same for TATA branded cars as well, but i guess it's easier to sell TATA cars sell because of price advantage.

IMO Fiat needs to do these:
1. Create exclusive FIAT showrooms and service centers in metros and Tier-1 cities.
2. Bring a small car below Punto. While at it, pay attention to smaller details about what customers actually expect in this car. The usual FIAT strengths like build and handling will not help much here.
3. Don't put off existing customers. One of the most powerful marketing that you can ever have is through word of mouth publicity. If you put off one customer today, you have potentially lost 10 new customers.

Last edited by SilentEngine : 4th August 2011 at 01:52.
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Old 4th August 2011, 07:20   #40
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

There are lots of analyses that have gone on in many threads, so I wont comment on all of them over again. But keeping in the spirit of suggestions, I will make three.

1. Ask existing dealers to have separate showroom facilities for FIAT. Requisite incentives need to be given to the dealers to do this.

2. Every major town should have at least one or two independent dealers and service centers for FIAT. Of course present numbers dont yet allow for it in smaller towns, but definitely in the bigger ones.

3. Build the brand, and be ready to bleed money to do it for at least a couple of years. The best way to do this is to bring in some stunning cars, which calls for an introduction of the Alfa Romeo cars in India and a full on-slaught of the European range, including a locally built Fiat Panda.
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Old 4th August 2011, 09:08   #41
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

Here are my 2 cents:
Once I saw a Palio MJD that had just collided with another car. I asked the driver (seemed well educated - spoke good English) if he wants Fiat's 24 hour helpline number. Until then he had no idea that Fiat is readily available to help round the clock for its drivers in distress!! Shows how much Fiat spends on ads and customer awareness.
It is not enough if they conduct free annual check ups. That caters for the existing customers. What about attracting new ones? Innovative ads that make people talk about the ad at least, if not the product. Remember the Zoo Zoo?

Fiat also needs at least another car to sell. I do not think they should have a cheaper hatchback than Punto, since that would mean getting into Vista's territory. In fact, I think they should not have any car that is a segment above Tata's cars.

Perhaps the new Adventure (but with a different name) to compete with Duster. And they have to advertise it in such a way that people understand that it is a luxury rural SUV (in comparison to Bolero) or an entry level SUV. The only Tata product in that range is Sump Grande, and that is more a people mover than SUV.
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Old 4th August 2011, 09:36   #42
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

I already got many advices to sell my Linea and buy some Maruti or hyundai product.
This is the current mentality of majority of people in India, They have a mindset that Fait will close the operation very soon.
So they asked me to sell my FIAT now itself to get a good selling price.

But i have a strong hope, FIAT will come back and now-a-days i am seeing alot of Linea's and Punto's in Chennai. still the sales is very few compare other Car Gaints.

I know some people who bought T-Jet Sunbeam Color because of the T-Jet Ad with Sunbeam Color car in media.
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Old 4th August 2011, 10:11   #43
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

My best friend is closing in on a Honda City, and I can't even whole-heartedly recommend Linea to him considering the sales figures. I just told him 'buy whatever you feel like, but at least test drive the T-Jet' for my sake
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Old 4th August 2011, 10:17   #44
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

And I wish someone at FIAT India/Italy is actually reading this thread atleast take something from it!

Not yet a disgruntled FIAT owner, but I'm sure when the day comes to sell my Palio off I might be.

At present the only sore point of ownership of my 'old' car over the past year and half has been the really expensive spares!
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Old 4th August 2011, 10:18   #45
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Default Re: Fiat - What's the way forward?

I feel we are over reacting here.

let us not get emotional on the subject and think from the head. i have seen tons of storage of team-bhp getting wasted with all these recommendation but has anything happened on the ground . NO . one needs to understand that marketing budgets are directly proportionate to sales. auto industry is capital intensive industry. i still feel that FIAT will bounce back once the economic scenario has improved. off course they need to improve in terms of A S S and sales& marketing but it cannot be done over night.

need of the hour is to win the lost trust of Indian customer. untill that happens they will continue to be part of such discussions. no amount of new launches will help them. TRUST . that is the magic word in Indian market on which MSIL / toyota / hyundai and all are surviving here .

Originally Posted by praful View Post
And I wish someone at FIAT India/Italy is actually reading this thread atleast take something from it!
I have reported this thread to FIAT italy via their website but only if they care and action what;s going on here in india

Last edited by .sushilkumar : 4th August 2011 at 10:35. Reason: added info
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