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Old 13th October 2008, 13:05   #1
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Default It will soon be a Country of Choices mixed with Wishes

With the imminent launch of Nano, the ability to purchase a "New Car" is going to drop down to levels never seen before. This effect will branch out even further as cars priced a segment higher would offer more in terms of features. Is it fair to say that we are all going to get more for our money, at least in the Rs.5 Lac and below bracket because of the NANO? .Added to this, the auxiliary expenses on servicing and maintenance will also face stronger sense of competition and comparisons. As much as it’s an option just ticked when we make our choices, Servicing Costs seldom gets more attention than it deserves compared to fuel economy. This is overlooked slightly and it’s often only the Premium Car buyers ( above 5Lac range context ) that give a second glance on their annual maintenance costs before purchases. The other factor that comes into play is the actual "Reason for buying" of vehicles. You have good mechanics, good aesthetics, good ownership experience, "premium" badge and some tagged good practicality. Seldom is there competition for the one with a blend of all these together, neither does one of such value exist. It’s a debate that will always have a question of choice to finish the conversation. Every person within themselves know what they have compromised and termed what’s lacking as “you can live without it”.

IMO, the crucial factor that adds another dimension to people making choices in this category is that of Used Car values. Setting aside the price, with the advent of higher, better, tempting salaries and crazy finance schemes, people are ready to upgrade their Cars and Lifestyles left right and centre. The NANO is only going to push the value of USED Cars where some can afford to just withdraw the money from an ATM!And I don’t mean a 15year old model that needs new clothes and shoes. I just read a thread on a ‘99 Mint Condition hardly used Honda City going for 1.7lacs in Ahmadabad! Surely this is not a range one has seen these kinds of vehicles before. Heck, I remember buying a ‘94 316i for around 400GBP at an auction and all it had was a radiator leak and worn leather. This was an auction in Britain in 2001 but it’s still a market that’s embryonic here. It’s a trend that will keep growing larger and people need not be jealous that they were not in Ahmadabad recently.

Considering all the factors above for choosing a new car, if you’re offered a 2005/6 Civic for 5 Lacs and Private Service Centers start cropping up with cheap labour, genuine parts and better service and have their own warranty to boot, will an Indian customer stop himself from choosing luxury over something new? The Mahindra’s have started multi brand service stations, surely what I feel as a trend of “quality and luxury” at cheap/reasonable prices is not the Absinthe in my blood talking. Servicing and maintaining a Used car from a higher segment could end up giving competition to New Cars in lower segment. This of course, at the cost of fuel efficiency........but you’ll probably end up with airbags, Abs,A boot,wine chiller and what not!.

You add what you compromised on, you add what you dream of, you add what you really need,top it with the money you can afford and it will sum up to a Good VFM Used Car in a segment higher than you aimed at!

I’m certainly convinced that one needs to sell their Used Car and get better value for your car before all that’s mentioned above become the norm. How imminent is the scenario is a point that will be left to ponder and left for discussion.

The other option is to read this and be convinced otherwise.


Last edited by absynthguzzler : 13th October 2008 at 13:14.
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