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Old 13th April 2009, 11:23   #31
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Normally Indians use the Engine capacity to determine the class of a car. Linea being a 1.3 Diesel and 1.4 Petrol doesn't really fit into this segment.
So I guess the Palio 1.6 should be priced higher then the City 1.5?! What about the Getz 1.5 Crdi? Priced higher then Linea 1.3 and Fiesta 1.4? And if tomorrow, Fiat launches the 1.9 JTD Linea then people would pay Laura prices for it since engines are of same capacities? Or wait, the 1.9 would have 140 bhp similar to the 2.0 TDi 140bhp engines in the Passat and Audi A4. Maybe Fiat can command Audi prices for the Linea then!

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But if you are shelling out 8 lacs plus, why settle for an underpowered car
Define underpowered.

It's easy for us to ask Fiat to give us 1.6 MJD and 1.9 JTD 140bhp engines but that's bad business. Right now, Fiat is focussing on assuring the buyers that their cars return mileage as good as competition. That's where the 1.3 MJD comes in and it seems like the engine is doing. Sure Fiat could give us the 1.9 140bhp engines but how many of those would it sell? How many of these does Fiat sell even in EU and other countries? The volume sales even in EU come from the 1.3. Let's not forget that even in EU the GP comes with the 75bhp variant.

I think Fiat is on the right track. There are no short cuts to being successfull after you have taken the kind of hit that Fiat has. They have given us a product that does everything well. The 1.3 Linea is designed to give you very good mileage which will take care of the 'Fiat's return poor mileage' reputation. Simultaniously, the after sales is being taken care of. Once ownership expereinces improve and the product is established in the market, Fiat will respond to competiton by offering the bigger and better engines. Since the Linea, by then, will have the reputation of a car that returns good mileage, the slightly lower mileage of the 1.6 MJD wouldn't take centerstage in buyer's minds as it would now.

Last edited by amit : 13th April 2009 at 11:27.
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Old 13th April 2009, 11:28   #32
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Not sure of a hit or flop, but I have seen a Linea MJD, Emotion+ in my company's parking lot. Have not seen a ANHC yet in our parking

Last edited by greatDrive : 13th April 2009 at 11:30.
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Old 13th April 2009, 13:30   #33
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Originally Posted by amit View Post
So I guess the Palio 1.6 should be priced higher then the City 1.5?! What about the Getz 1.5 Crdi? Priced higher then Linea 1.3 and Fiesta 1.4?
Both the Palio 1.6 and Getz Crdi are for performance enthusiasts and these cars never figure in list of cars that normal people would shortlist before buying a car so no point in comparing with these.

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Originally Posted by amit View Post
Define underpowered.

The 1.3 Linea is designed to give you very good mileage which will take care of the 'Fiat's return poor mileage' reputation. Simultaniously, the after sales is being taken care of. Once ownership expereinces improve and the product is established in the market, Fiat will respond to competiton by offering the bigger and better engines. Since the Linea, by then, will have the reputation of a car that returns good mileage, the slightly lower mileage of the 1.6 MJD wouldn't take centerstage in buyer's minds as it would now.
Mileage figures dont mean a make or break in the segment of upwards of 8 lacs. They do in case of hatchbacks and thats why Palio suffered.
How low can the mileage of a 1.6 CRDI engine get? It might get slightly low but that wont deter buyers from buying it. Case in point is the Verna Crdi and SX4 both have the right engines and mileage may be lower in comparison to smaller sedans/hatchbacks yet people dont mind buying these.

Also providing the lowest capacity engine possible doesn't guarantee best mileage. People would rev the 1.3 MJD linea hard and it would inturn consume more fuel than what the 1.6 JTD would have consumed. So the mileage argument doesn't hold good.
I think they chose the 1.3 engine to keep the costs low and yet milk the Indian consumers with a high price.

Last edited by revhappy : 13th April 2009 at 13:35.
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Old 13th April 2009, 13:43   #34
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Revhappy, what about NHC?
It was only 77 BHP and Honda was happily milking Indian customers!
Please have a balance view of things, instead of taking a anti-Fiat stance here!

Normal Indian customer will never go by engine power alone, it is for the package offered by the car!
And in that respect, Linea delivers very well.
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Old 13th April 2009, 14:16   #35
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Linea is visible on roads ,its cannot be termed Flop as of now but
its was not going to set sales the charts on fire as every one knew what fiat did to earlier customers ,people says fiat and there fortunes have changed with grane punto ,

I hope that is the case as they should appreciate some people still took a bet on there product , aleast fiat should not let them down once again
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Old 13th April 2009, 15:52   #36
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Originally Posted by finneyp View Post
Revhappy, what about NHC?
It was only 77 BHP and Honda was happily milking Indian customers!
.
BHP figures can be misleading. Although NHC is 77 bhp it doesnt feel like it.
When the SX4 was launched, the Speed Auto show on CNBC compared the 100+BHP of SX4 with NHC and concluded that although on paper NHC seems lot slower that SX4, on the Tarmac it isn't and NHC's power delivery is better than SX4 same case with Fiesta TDCI with 75 bhp.

For that matter the Linea BHP figure is 90! But people who have driven it will tell you that it doesn't really feel as if the extra weight of the car has been compensated by the 15 BHP extra over the Palio MJD.
So although it says 90 BHP it feels as if the same MJD engine of Palio has been used without any tuning. God knows what happened to the 15 extra horses

Last edited by revhappy : 13th April 2009 at 15:58.
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Old 13th April 2009, 16:03   #37
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Too early to say, Linea is hit or flop.

Even though initial reviews & sales are good, atleast we have to wait for one year to comment upon.

That what happens to SX4, when it was launched with lots of gizmos, alloys, fatty tyres etc etc. people had gone mad for it. At that time, there was ""raining SX4s"". People were saying Honda is dead than.

But after that what happens?

Lots of niggling issues, poor FE, noisy engine, average build quality, made SX4 an average typical maruti car.

So, once the honeymoon period is over, it got legged behind to its counterparts.

If we can watch the threads on SX4, once they are loaded with praises, now they are full with niggling issues.

Now nobody is preferring SX4 over Honda.

So, wait & watch. We wish Linea will not have the same fate as SX4 has.

Last edited by loving_alaap : 13th April 2009 at 16:05.
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Old 13th April 2009, 16:10   #38
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I can see many Lineas in Bangalore. Maybe because of 'Concord Motors' being in close proximity

But same was the case with Vernas. There weren't too many after, well, lets say, 4-5 months after launch. Many say, overpricing was the reason. But after that I can see many Vernas on the road.

It will not be a flop. Many people I know are waiting for juicy discounts or an optimistic price cut or something magical.
Some are scared of another variant launch with a better engine (remember what happend to i10 customers when kappa was launched?) There are many such factors.

Its all wait and watch. Personally, It is not a flop, right now it is average in sales.
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Old 13th April 2009, 17:09   #39
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Both the Palio 1.6 and Getz Crdi are for performance enthusiasts and these cars never figure in list of cars that normal people would shortlist before buying a car so no point in comparing with these.
So only people buying performance cars are normal? Thank God I am normal!

So why did the 'performance enthusiasts' crib over the mileage of the Palio 1.6? I have a S10 and it gives comparable mileage to my 1.6L SX4. We had a Ikon 1.6 in our family and both the cars returned similar mileages.

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Mileage figures dont mean a make or break in the segment of upwards of 8 lacs.
I don't agree. The first question I am asked with regard to my Rs.8.14 lakh SX4 is 'mileage kya hai' and 'petrol ya diesel.' If mileage wasn't a concern you would never have seen Honda replacing a 100bhp car with a 77bhp one. This is India. Even S class buyers prefer a diesel here.

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How low can the mileage of a 1.6 CRDI engine get? It might get slightly low but that wont deter buyers from buying it.
This works for Honda and Hyundai. This is Fiat we are talking about. They were hit bad with reports of poor mileage. Take a look at the ANHC. It will probably return lesser mileage then the 77bhp NHC but since people are conditioned to believe that the City returns very good mileage the lesser mileage from a more powerful engine wouldn't get noticed. That's what Fiat is aiming for. Establish the Linea 1.3 as a fuel efficient car and then bring in the 1.6L later on. The slightly lower mileage wouldnt get the attention it would then as it would now.


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Also providing the lowest capacity engine possible doesn't guarantee best mileage.
Check out feedback from Linea owners. The mileage reports we are getting from them seem to be class leading. I think Fiat is hitting the bulls eye with the Linea's fuel efficiency.

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I think they chose the 1.3 engine to keep the costs low and yet milk the Indian consumers with a high price.
So a Linea diesel with more features is milking Indian customers and Honda with a petrol engined City and lesser features is not?! Or is the over Rs.1.xx lakh difference okay because it's offering 118bhp over the Linea's 86 which again makes no sense as it's torque which should be the focus in a diesel engine over bhp.

There is one more reason for the Linea 1.3. Today a Linea 1.6 would give Fiat no chance of upgrading and refreshing their car 2 years down the line when competition would offer newer variants of their models. Fiat seems to have planned for that. If 18 months from now Maruti launches the SX4 1.3MJD with 90 bhp and Ford launch the new Fiesta 1.6, Fiat would offer the 1.6L Linea with 120bhp to keep it's car ahead of the pack. I don't see anything wrong with that. If Fiat gave us the 1.6 now, we would say Fiat is lethargic and not upgrading it's products and we would give examples of SX4, Verna and new Fiesta etc to prove our point. Damned if they do and damned if they don't!

Sometimes, you can't go with all your guns blazing into the field. Better to take it one step at a time. Fiat has pushed the envelope a little higher with the price to features ratio. They will react to competition's moves in due course. Shouldn't be difficult for them as they have the firepower avaliable with them.

You and I may crib about underpowered and what not but 1600 people every month don't seem to agree with us. For once, Fiat got it's market research right!

Last edited by amit : 13th April 2009 at 17:14.
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Old 13th April 2009, 18:07   #40
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Originally Posted by amit View Post
So only people buying performance cars are normal? Thank God I am normal!

So why did the 'performance enthusiasts' crib over the mileage of the Palio 1.6? I have a S10 and it gives comparable mileage to my 1.6L SX4. We had a Ikon 1.6 in our family and both the cars returned similar mileages.
-------------------------------------------
You and I may crib about underpowered and what not but 1600 people every month don't seem to agree with us. For once, Fiat got it's market research right!

you seem to have understood the game quite well and I have understood it through your post.


Note from the Team-BHP Support Team: Please avoid quoting an entire large post. It inconveniences our small screen & mobile readers.

Thanks

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Old 13th April 2009, 19:52   #41
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There was this quote by the well known auto consultant, Tutu Dhawan, on a TV channel, who said that only 70 odd service centres ACROSS THE WHOLE OF INDIA are capable of servicing the Linea.

I think people on the verge of buying a Linea should consider the fact that if they have a vehicle breakdown or need urgent help they'll have to go to great distances to get help.

This quote also gives us the info that Linea could be a very sophisticated car which cannot be serviced by ordinary street side mechanics.
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Old 13th April 2009, 20:09   #42
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Originally Posted by nitindangoria View Post
This quote also gives us the info that Linea could be a very sophisticated car which cannot be serviced by ordinary street side mechanics.
This holds good for almost all cars engines controlled by ECUs and sensors.
But Since Linea share the same MJD engine( Palio, Vista, Dzire, Swift), Getting Engine spares should not be a problem.
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Old 13th April 2009, 20:28   #43
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Originally Posted by nitindangoria View Post
There was this quote by the well known auto consultant, Tutu Dhawan, on a TV channel, who said that only 70 odd service centres ACROSS THE WHOLE OF INDIA are capable of servicing the Linea.
duh! It would have been nice if he also mentioned the names of these service centers, so Linea users know where to go.

guess we should all go back to 800, every roadside mechanic would know to how fix it.
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Old 13th April 2009, 21:18   #44
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I agree with Amit's argument and his reading of the market, Fiat has strategically planned the coming months if not years and they are carefully watching the market take shape. The 1.6 MJD, 1.9 MJD and probably a year from now the Multijet-II are aces up FIAT's sleeves which would be used in time to come.
And as far as the 'Underpowered engine' goes, well einstien's theory of relativity still holds good. I have clocked 2000 kms on my Linea and noway she's underpowered, throttle her to around 3000 rpm and you will know what i'm talking about.
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Old 13th April 2009, 21:43   #45
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Originally Posted by amit View Post
Define underpowered.

It's easy for us to ask Fiat to give us 1.6 MJD and 1.9 JTD 140bhp engines but that's bad business. Right now, Fiat is focussing on assuring the buyers that their cars return mileage as good as competition. That's where the 1.3 MJD comes in and it seems like the engine is doing. Sure Fiat could give us the 1.9 140bhp engines but how many of those would it sell? How many of these does Fiat sell even in EU and other countries? The volume sales even in EU come from the 1.3. Let's not forget that even in EU the GP comes with the 75bhp variant.
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You and I may crib about underpowered and what not but 1600 people every month don't seem to agree with us. For once, Fiat got it's market research right!
Absolutely bang on, amit. This time Fiat seems to have covered all the routes/ points which are necessary. how many of those power-hungry people demanding 1.6/1.9 L engine are buying cars with higher FE, with diesel, with lower than 1.6/1.9? the answer is quite a lot. its fashionable to demand something, its different when you've to shell out pure money. that's what happens in our market.

Fiat was the 1st to launch a hatch with ABS & other safety features with 1.6 engine. How many hailed it? very few & they still love it & they're right, the car is marvelous but they are very very few & that does not make a business sense. but what happened to Fiat - it was relegated as a "poor FE, petrol-hungry" product. this time they've tried to cover everything & seems to be fairly successful - great looks, innovative features, all safety features, 1st in class luxury features covering everything, low cost, longer car, better FE, and an engine which is not at all uncomfortable or does not lug (you still have a feeling that you're driving a decently powered car- try to overtake few cars in 3rd/4th/ 5th gear & you'll know the answer)

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Originally Posted by revhappy View Post
Both the Palio 1.6 and Getz Crdi are for performance enthusiasts and these cars never figure in list of cars that normal people would shortlist before buying a car so no point in comparing with these.
precisely, Fiat does not want Linea to sell only 100-200 units. They want normal people to go for it & hence offered an overall package (as mentioned above) & made it irresistable.

Had Maruti or Honda launched Linea, wouldn't they have priced it around 1.5 lac higher to about 9.5-10 lacs considering the features & value it gives? wouldn't people still have gone for it?

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Originally Posted by rubin2006 View Post
I hope that is the case as they should appreciate some people still took a bet on there product , aleast fiat should not let them down once again
They seem to have covered everything this time unless they make a major goof up now. Even service seems to have improved & Linea customers are being treated with utmost respect at service station & are given prompt response.

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Originally Posted by nitindangoria View Post
This quote also gives us the info that Linea could be a very sophisticated car which cannot be serviced by ordinary street side mechanics.
How many of us take their C+ segment car to a street side mechanic? If I have Maruti SX4. still would I go to a street side mechanic? No, never. Not even in urgency as far as possible.

Last edited by benbsb29 : 31st May 2011 at 12:18. Reason: Fixed broken quote tag.
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