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Old 14th January 2009, 13:45   #61
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Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post
... I only hope Fiat does that because they have a great product with super prices. The Linea should succeed because that will keep competition in check, specially competition that's sucking Indian's dry with absolute compromise of cars!
I recollect reading some high level FIAT executive saying that Linea is going to be the make-or-break attempt by them. I really hope they get their act in order.

OT: My brother has been driving his Palio 1.1 for the last couple of months. And reminding you, he brought one which was sitting at the dealer for a long time and God know what it might have gone thru. Touchwood, so far things have been good for him. He did a Madurai - Sabarimala trip in that and it seems to be handling like a dream.
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Old 14th January 2009, 13:52   #62
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All I can say is WOW!!!
I feel more enlightened about fiat. I did take a test drive of the fiat MJD in Mumbai. The car had no test sticker on it. The odo was disconnected. The car drove impeccably though. The sales guy was overexcited to try and sell it to me somehow or the other... a bit more pushy than normal.

However, i always wondered how could a customer trust a manufacturer to be able to provide good service when it has a borrowed sales & service arrangement. To me it only reflects the complete lack of commitment from the manufacturer towards its own products and its customers. So even if they have a wonderful product, its really tough for a customer(atleast one like me) to muster faith.

The 'hardcore' fiat customers need a congratulation for their guts and courage to oversee such a fact and still purchase a fiat product.
I wonder how they will live upto the expectations of a Linea customer.

Last edited by jaysmokesleaves : 14th January 2009 at 13:53.
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Old 14th January 2009, 14:04   #63
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Originally Posted by muneemmk View Post
...look at Toyota,Maruti,Hyundai or Honda. Yes they give out the occasional Lemon every once in a blue moon but they never have such a good track record as the TATA/FIAT in handing out lemons and the worst service in the industry...
Exactly. The chances of getting a lemon from Tata / Fiat seems to be more than other cars. So, people thinks why to take risk. And I think its justified.

And thats why Maruti & Hyundai shows on top in sales figure.

Btw, congrats on your Performance award
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Old 14th January 2009, 14:25   #64
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Note from mod: Please be civil otherwise stricter measures will be taken. Also please note that TBHP rules allow criticism of Cars/Manufactures/Dealers etc., however direct personal attacks on members or bullying them for either criticizing or praising a particular brand etc., is strictly prohibited and will result in infraction or ban
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Old 14th January 2009, 14:54   #65
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Sentiments, Passion and feelings aside, We as Team- BHP'ians can do one simple thing.

Never, ever buy any automobile from a dealer who does not offer a properly marked Test Drive vehicle. Hopefully our sheer numbers will force some change in the trend. At the very least, we wont be scape goat'ed.

Almost every prospective customer or enthusiast needs test drives before inking the cheque. The dealer/manufacturer should ensure that atleast one TD vehicle is available at the dealership which is sadly not the case these days with some dealers.

I was recently offered a registered customer vehicle (Safari VX) for TD by the same dealer being discussed here. Only a little late into the TD, I realised that this was a customer vehicle. At the end of the test drive, I made it clear to the dealer that I will not buy a vehicle from him again because of his integrity issues and simply walked away.

Last edited by Digital Vampire : 14th January 2009 at 14:55.
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Old 14th January 2009, 15:16   #66
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the difference between tata and fiat in this case is that tata actually knows this and steps in to do something about it. Everyone has been crying about the service center's incompetence, but given the fact that its a TASS, chances are that its incompetent anyway. For me , the typical service experience goes like this
give for service->get a shoddy job done-> tata calls for feedback-> I rant about how crappy it is -> TASS calls back and fixes it-> eventually something gets done and a resolution is made. Tata is aware that their after sales sucks, and does something about it.
Is the same done for fiat cars?
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Old 14th January 2009, 15:33   #67
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@Muneem- I can completely understand what you went through. In the end guess your decision was logical.
@Amit - Agree with most of your points.
Would like to point out like Linea, Indica Vista also has a dedicated TD vehicle where odo is not disconnected so maybe we are seeing a bit of improvement.
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Old 14th January 2009, 15:38   #68
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Muneem, thank you very much for sharing your experience with us!
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Old 14th January 2009, 15:54   #69
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Muneem - Although one often suspects that dealers indulge in malpractices, your posts do blow the lid on the incompetence of this specific dealer atleast.
Also, as much as I admire Fiat products, and the solidity of their products seems to be matchless, their after sales does scare me to the point that I would not want to buy a Fiat in India.

While the dealer is obviously at fault here, Fiat has not inspired much confidence too. Obviously, having so many failures inspite of good products points to something rotten at the management level. As they say, the buck rests with the captain of the ship. If the top brass expects credit and compensation for a good job done, they should also expect brickbats for their continued failures. I mean, the Ferrari episode with Sachin, the Fiat 500 pricing and the fiasco with Palio, Petra et all is a little too much to ignore.

I hope someone at Fiat pays attention and realizes what it means to "Manage" a company before its too late.

Lastly, Muneem, selling a lemon to the customer after repainting 3 doors and delaying delivery till the evening so that he cannot make out the dents/flaws does not tell a good tale about your own ethics. I hope you've learnt from your experiences and do not cheat unsuspecting customers in the future.
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Old 14th January 2009, 16:03   #70
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Muneem, I can imagine what one goes through in a situation like yours. In the real world today, people who love their work often suffer through quite a bit when they land up with an employer with less-than-desirable integrity.

I do not want to this thread to turn into a Fiat-bashing or a Fiat-defending thread, but show me a good dealer and I will show you ten bad ones, irrespective of manufacturer. And now that Tata dealers are Fiat dealers as well, so I guess the statistic is equally bad for both. Are you trying to say that salesmen in RF motors did not abuse new Indicas?

From my own experience, I find my ASC to be very pro-active, but the infamous parts supply issue from Fiat remains. Time and again, I have pestered him to re-open the showroom and he says he's happier with the Service part only. Knowing his (relative) integrity, I would want him to be dealer again, but he refuses. Why? Here's why:

At the end of the day, profits are the bottom line. For example, I assume you have an idea of how much security deposit is required to start a Tata-Fiat dealership in a city like Delhi.

In a recent discussion with my friendly ASC, he disclosed that the amount was something in the region of Rs 12 crores in cash and another Rs 3 crores in some sort of security! (He could be lying, but I doubt he would be very far off the mark). For a person who is making that kind of investment (apart from the infrastructure, personnel etc.) purely as a deposit, the bottomline is just profit at any cost.

This is where Behram Dhabar's post makes sense. The manufacturer is too busy making excel sheets to take into account any ground realities. And the dealer simply does what he can do break even / recover his investment.

It is the customer who suffers. Simple. As long as you think you are being taken for a ride, you should simply walk away from this particular company and go to another. And of course, I think I would have done the same thing had I been in your place.

A major overhaul in the entire system is required. Before suggesting any major managerial / HR / Policy changes, maybe the companies ought to look at the fact that whether any dealer will follow their dictats, given such amounts of security they charge from them. Or would they simply cut corners at any cost, and continue in the same way.

The dealer is the face of the company. The company has to ensure that they maintain a synergistic relationship with them. If both are trying to make a quick buck at each other's expense, they will both suffer. In my case, I have a good ASC backed up by a bad company. in your case, it seems both are equally a fault.

Last edited by architect : 14th January 2009 at 16:06.
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Old 14th January 2009, 16:05   #71
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I would say both the dealer and the car manufacturer are to blame.
I had great respect for FIAT cars until about 4-5 years ago, solely from my experience of a Car-pool Fiat Palio 1.2 we used for commuting to college. The heaviness and thud of the doors, the feeling of safety, and ride quality which very few cars in that segment could match at that time, was so impressive.

Sadly, incidents like these and numerous other horror stories which we have come across all these years continue to erode the faith of the common man on FIAT as a reliable and trustworthy car manufacturer, atleast in India.

I only hope and pray that good sense prevails and the company gets its act together in India for the benefit of customers and more importantly for its own fate.

Last edited by DCEite : 14th January 2009 at 16:06.
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Old 14th January 2009, 16:05   #72
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Muneem - thanks for sharing this info - I am quite appalled at the way dealers can take a customer for a ride !

This makes me wonder how far the so called advantage of buying a NEW CAR exists in reality in comparison to a pre-owned one.
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Old 14th January 2009, 16:21   #73
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In the last one year, I have test driven the following cars here in Kolkata:

1) Indica CS
2) Indica Vista QuadraJet
3) Fiat Palio MultiJet
4) Skoda Fabia
5) Chevrolet Captiva
6) Honda CR-V
7) Hyundai Getz Prime

NONE of these cars were test drive cars. ALL of them when brand new cars with their Odometers and Speedometers disconnected.

When I purchased my car in March 08, the first dealer had the colour I wanted in stock, and the second one did not. I waited 20 days and took the car from the second dealer, just so I get a brand new car.
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Old 14th January 2009, 16:41   #74
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Very frustrating, but I think that doing 165 in test car is not a good idea, specially when it will be eventually be sold to some unknowing customer.

But in general, its sad to see the manufacturer of good build quality cars is actually not able to make it big in India purely due to its management. Whatever the argument, they are in India since very long now, still if they cannot improve or cannot manage the show, better pack up.

I hope that the situation actually improves.
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Old 14th January 2009, 17:53   #75
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Muneem, how did u know you were doing 165kmph when the speedo was disconnected from the demo car which you took to the customer some 300kms away..??
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