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Old 12th October 2010, 14:37   #76
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So after all the waiting, the Aria finally makes its appearance! Great review guys.

Maybe because I was never shopping in this segment to begin with, this product left me cold. A couple of doubts:
- Why is TATA harping so much on the cross-over SUV aspect so much when the Aria looks every bit like an MUV. In fact I was expecting something better looking than the Safari- this is a plain Jane!
- Maybe it's just me but who in their right mind would pay 19 lac for a TATA product? Toss in a couple more and you can have the Fortuner. At he very least they should have parity-priced this with Innova.
- The branding is all wrong (ok this is pure opnion, feel free to disagree!). What is "ARIA"? How do you even say it? "Uh-raa-ya" or "Aa-ree-yaa"? Knowing us Indians, everyone will end up calling this the "Aar-ya" soon enough. Fail!
- Also on branding, putting the same badge on this as the Indica is a big mistake. Tata have missed a golden opportunity to create a new premium brand- perhaps one they could slap on the Vista, Manza, Aria range. A homegrown Lexus or Acura WOULD have more takers, self included.
- The list of useless features is impressive: GPS ("turn left at Hanuman ki tekdi", perhaps?), cruise control, reverse camera (if you can't park, don't buy a big car!)
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Old 12th October 2010, 14:48   #77
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Greeeeeaaat review Guys !!!

My two bits:

1. While it seems Tata has vastly improved the interiors (Safari just sucks.. sorry Safari owners, but believe it deserves more attention from its makers) , Tata needs to refine the rough edges like Covers over the joints in the seats, purple border for the door opening latches etc.

2. For God's sake Mr. Tata, all your cars look like Indica from the rear !!! Needs serious thought there...

3. My serious concern is rattling of the doors... hopefully wont happen here...

And finally...

4. Kudos to Tata team to attempt to break the 'foreign make' segment!!! Hope all the feedback from the market actually goes on to iron out the small niggles in subsequent launches...

Last edited by Rehaan : 12th October 2010 at 16:00. Reason: Removing [font] and other tags
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Old 12th October 2010, 14:53   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
- Why is TATA harping so much on the cross-over SUV aspect so much when the Aria looks every bit like an MUV. In fact I was expecting something better looking than the Safari- this is a plain Jane!
I guess that's what a crossover is supposed to be - the territory between a MUV & a SUV. Now, whether the concept of a crossover will suceed in India or not is something that we will have to wait & see. Better looking than the Safari? Well, it depends on individual preferences, I can see quite a few people liking this "futuristic" design.

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
- Maybe it's just me but who in their right mind would pay 19 lac for a TATA product? Toss in a couple more and you can have the Fortuner. At the very least they should have parity-priced this with Innova.
With this level of equipment & AWD? You're kidding, right? By the way, I think the top end version would cost around 16.45 lacs on-road in Gurgaon. The Fortuner costs 20.80 lacs here.

But yes, ambitious pricing by TATA

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
- What is "ARIA"? How do you even say it? "Uh-raa-ya" or "Aa-ree-yaa"? Knowing us Indians, everyone will end up calling this the "Aar-ya" soon enough. Fail!
Here you go -
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Pronounced Are-ya, not Air-ya:

Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
- The list of useless features is impressive: GPS ("turn left at Hanuman ki tekdi", perhaps?), cruise control, reverse camera (if you can't park, don't buy a big car!)
Hmmm, this is certainly an interesting POV. Its like saying ABS is useless - if you can't stop the car without locking up the wheels, don't drive

EDIT: Corrected on-road prices.

Last edited by suman : 12th October 2010 at 15:09.
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Old 12th October 2010, 14:54   #79
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Excellent review - 5 stars of course.

I am not a fan of this crossover MUV concept - do not think there is a market for this type of vehicle. Those wanting an SUV will buy a proper SUV like the Fortuner,Endy etc. Though in India, majority of SUV buyers do not buy those for off-roading. They buy it for - image, brand value, looks and street presence and the Aria can't compete with the likes of Fortuner in any of these aspects.
If it's primarily a MUV, then it should have been priced 3-4 lakhs cheaper wtihout 4*4 and some other SUV-like features.
I like the interiors - seems a huge step forward.
The feature list is impressive to say the least. I would go to the extent of saying that it is more than what is required.
I am not a fan of the looks, particularly from the rear.

This IMO will not bring any volumes for Tata motors, though I applaud their effort and ambition in building a premium car and position it with the global behemoths!

Last edited by adimicra : 12th October 2010 at 14:56.
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:10   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Toss in a couple more and you can have the Fortuner. At he very least they should have parity-priced this with Innova.
- The branding is all wrong (ok this is pure opnion, feel free to disagree!). What is "ARIA"? How do you even say it? "Uh-raa-ya" or "Aa-ree-yaa"? Knowing us Indians, everyone will end up calling this the "Aar-ya" soon enough. Fail!
Yup, they could have "parity-featured" (to coin another one) this with the Innova, and priced it in the same range or lower. But they're trying to create a new segment of perceived value in the 10+ range.

About the pronunciation: Since it is an Indian company, you're right

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
- Also on branding, putting the same badge on this as the Indica is a big mistake. Tata have missed a golden opportunity to create a new premium brand- perhaps one they could slap on the Vista, Manza, Aria range. A homegrown Lexus or Acura WOULD have more takers, self included.
So, does that mean Indians would more readily buy the Vista/Manza/Aria if they were simply re-branded to something other than Tata?

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
- The list of useless features is impressive: GPS ("turn left at Hanuman ki tekdi", perhaps?), cruise control, reverse camera (if you can't park, don't buy a big car!)
Are you serious? I use GPS (the humble, phone based version) quite often on my trips around Bangalore. Places I've never been to and such. Quite useful, you should try it.

You seem uncomfortable being Indian. Why disparaging "Aria" and "Hanuman ki tekdi"? Does "Lexus" even mean anything?
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:11   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suman View Post
AFAI can see, the top end Aria would still be Rs 3.50 lacs cheaper on-road than the Fortuner, at least in Gurgaon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lurker View Post
Weren't you saying that Aria would never be priced even close to the fortuner. Tata is simply looking to increase profit margins by launching cars perceived to be premium.
Sorry, I made a mistake, the difference in on-road prices is 4.35 lacs!!
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:21   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anujmishra View Post
Why there is hue and cry for pricing? I feel pricing is perfectly allright and it will help Tata to create and fill hollow between 13 Lakh and 19 Lakh with this crossover SUV. People want all bells and whistles with prices equal to Innova, Common.

These prices are decided by team of management who study market extensively, mere once perception would not work. With so many features and customization I feel current pricing is a stealer. AWD, Navigation, Improved Interior, Tons of space, Good engine, Climate Control etc features would push this car to market and definitely there would be buyer.

Do not compare it with Xylo or Innova. Lets see at Fortuner and beyond.
Could'nt agree more. A company launching its product, esp at this high cost would have done its homework right. And we can trust Tata on atleast this front simply going by their past performance. Its basic exercise you do for any product introduction.

People indeed are only comparing it with Innova only price, but forget that it has so many added features like 4WD, TC, Navigation, etc which definately add costs. One of our fellow BHPians even mentioned that TML sources components from Tata group companies, but Sir, even that does cost money, isnt it? Wouldn't these companies also have their shareholders to answer for their profitability.

Also, one financial aspect that is overlooked when prices are compared is that Innova got launched at many countries i.e. multiple markets simultaenously, hence the product development cost got distributed (due to volumes) and Toyota did not have to worry about recovering the project cost from just one market. So I would give in to Tata for being slightly higher on the price.

Finally, basic ground rule is, people will buy product as long as they feel its worth their money. Pardon me for sounding like a case of sour grapes, but I have hardly seen people cry foul for the overpriced cars (and you can find many of those around) from foreign manufacturers.

While all these are initial reactions, lets wait for the actual road show to begin. Who knows how the market actually behaves?

Last edited by keyurshah : 12th October 2010 at 15:24. Reason: Corrected textual errors
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:22   #83
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This is undoubtedly the best review on TBHP so far...Many thanks GTO & Rehaan.

I'm pretty sure Tata botched up the pricing and it may prove to be a costly mistake. At least a base version should have been there to compete with Innova's midrange models

Though I have high praises for Tata and its automotive products (I own an Indigo), at ~19 lacs on-road in Bangalore, customers has far better options than investing in Tata's R&D on customer products.

When Tata service centers are not equipped to handle a Safari customer, how can they handle an even more premium product? No way...No chance...

I'd even bet this product will be forced to see a downward price revision very soon
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:30   #84
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I appreciate your objective approach. But I'd like to add in my points as below:
First things first: TML has been working on the (now)Aria for at least 5 years now. The NPI (New Product Introduction) for Aria would have started way back then. We all agree upon the fact that the product is non-competitively priced, however, TML (due to whatever reasons) has invested more than double the time it is taken internationally to introduce new platforms.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
Note: My view below is only on the pricing, not discounting the fact that it looks a very competent product.

With all the Due Respect to Tata Brand, I think for the very first time Tata
has messed up on the pricing of this product with all the leverage it has upon

a) Steel Price (Tata Group Supplier- Corus/Tata Steel)
TML doesn't buy steel for Autumotive body panels from either of the above.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
b) Component Prices (Tata Group suppliers- Tata TACO)
many a times, TACO, TJC etc and others have had to setup new facilities to cater to the new requirements. e.g. a new line was setup for the assembling & JIT delivery of the following assemblies for Vista : Front end module, Dashboard.
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Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
c) Engineering Services Prices (Tata Technologies/INCAT/TCS)
d) IT Services prices (TCS )
Tata acquired a European design house (now christened TMETC : Tata Motors European Technical Center) and TTL is used more for back-end designing roles. Even the ERC was headed (last I knew) by a TMETC guy. TTL doesn't have the expertise and experience tht meets TML's requirements and hence, TML has had to use external consultancy services (Dürr, e.g.) which drives costs up. It is another thing that Dürr itself has outsourced the required designing to TTL engineers stationed within TML premises. lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
e) Access to High End Technology (J-LR)
f) Economies of Scale (Export of these vehicle as opposed to CBU/CKD imports by MNC players)
The point is not whether one has access to the latest in technology. The point is if your vehicles and in-plant systems are primed up to receive those new technologies. Now that we are on the topic, we have seen how much loaded Aria is on the technological front. It takes a lot more than what meets the eye to install one technology in a car.
Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
g) Inhouse Engine Capability and technologies.
Yes, they must have gained on the economies of scale (&scope) on the engine front and from the in-house casting processes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
This has led to me to start believing that; its the M&M which is truly a world class Indian Auto player in Passenger vehicles and Not TATA.
Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
... though i have no plans to buy an SUV in near future but from pure Auto-enthusiast's point of view its a lurking disaster from Tatas. Hope i am wrong.
Oh Lets not be THAT harsh on the Tatas so as to call Aria a lurking disaster !
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:38   #85
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Great review GTO and Rehaan!

My 2 cents:
- Saw the Aria ad in the newspaper today morning. Tatas seem to be trying to establish Aria as a crossover (mashup anybody?) between a "sedan" and a SUV (and NOT a "MUV" and a SUV). Looks like an attempt to distance themselves from a direct comparison with the proven but feature-challenged Innova.
- This offering might apeal to two types of customers:
a. People who buy based on a predefined budget. For the same price point, there is hardly anything else (across multiple segments) that offers so-much (dare I say) value.
b. Neo-rich nuclear families (possibly with driver) who need a lifestyle vehicle, but find Innova repulsive because of the taxi-image and don't really want to splurge on a true-blood SUV like fortuner (or possibly don't need one).

All the best to Tatas for an attempt to create a new segment!

Last edited by SDP : 12th October 2010 at 15:43.
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:45   #86
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It seems we all (at least the majority of us) are not proud of ourselves, to see an Indian company to move to the next level in terms of product design, refinement and postioning.

I really feel the interiors are never seen before for a TATA and though the pricing seems to be out of place, such a company should have some solid reason behind this. Let's see what trick Tata has got up in the sleeve!!
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:46   #87
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Lots of comment around price, Tata reliability, quality, low class people at TASC etc. I guess that rather than rehashing and restating the same thing again and again, lets wait for 4-6 months and let the market decide
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Old 12th October 2010, 15:59   #88
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Tata has been working on craftsmanship issues for long now and it clearly shows in Aria. They needed a platform change and things worked up from scratch to get such results !
Not appreciating a sub-standard product designed at first, I appreciate the fact that they withhold the launch of vehicles till they iron out the kinks.
Manza launch was long due. and so was Aria's. But we are increasingly happy with the improvements made by the company.

It isn't an overnight change ... and hence, there is hope of its sustainability.
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Old 12th October 2010, 16:25   #89
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Rehaan and GTO, another 5-star review! Kudos to Tata Motors too.

The Aria certainly seems a big step forward by Tata, but how popular it is going by the priicing remains ot be seen. I don't think people buying in the Rs. 15-19 lakh range will tolerate too many glitches in the interiors or exteriors.

I hope features from this flagship model trickle down to the other cars Tata makes which is where all their volumes will come from.
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Old 12th October 2010, 16:27   #90
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Is there any possibility that TATA considers this review and fixes all small/big niggles and comes up with a refined/sophisticated vehicle? Of course, vehicle this expensive needs some class. . .

5 star rating all the way GTO and rehaan!
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