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Old 23rd February 2010, 20:44   #1
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Default Cruze LTZ Automatic - Official Release + faux pas

The long awaited Chevrolet Cruze Auto was introduced today at the Taj Vivanta adjoining the ITPL, Bangalore. Mr Karl Slym, President and Managing Director GM India launched the car along with Mr P Balendran, VP Marketing and Rohit Paranjape, Dir. GM Technical Centre.

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So why the release of the car in Bangalore - why not Delhi or Mumbai which are the usual launch pads?

We knew it but did not know that much. We know GM have a vast technical research and design centre in Bangalore. It has been in operation for 5 years. What we were unaware about was how large it is - 750 and still growing. It is a centre of excellence for Powertrain Engineering - transmission design, some control system and engine system design. I had gone for a facility tour earlier which is in a separate thread. This centre validated the Cruze for India hence the significance of releasing the car in this location. 70% of the transmission systems were either designed or modified by the team over here.

What did Mr Slym talk about?
  • The significance of the X300 platform and how it is a winner. Bold styling, advanced features for the money and the awards received. He did harp about it being a great driver’s car. I’ll rest my case on that
  • They are thrilled with the various awards (I think most new cars that were launched got some award or the other though!)
  • Order book is for two months
  • Second shift on stream in Halol for a capacity of 700 cars per week
  • 60% local content for Cruze. 85% for Beat. In the case of the latter, they stamp their own body panels
  • Talegaon engine plant due on stream in November
  • No plans for the 2 litre Petrol
  • Pensive about budget
  • Cruze auto- same power and style but more convenience
  • Stressed importance of safety
  • Aggressively bringing in new models
  • Dealerships to move from 200 to 300 end of year
  • 30 used car outlets going onto 70 - sold twice as many cars as planned
  • Cruze developed in Germany and adapted locally
  • High -end LTZ model is more in demand

Questions were asked about
  • Why small cars do not have auto (cost reasons).
  • Is there a market ? (growing but no figures given)
  • How will you educate the custmer about fuel consumption issues (no proper answer)

It was then over to the Ashim Gupta to talk about the cars features. It was a repeat about the normal Cruze features. Keyless go etc
  • Relaunched the Bow Tie
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  • They are planning to marketing the car in a bold but crisper fashion
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  • He announced the price Rs 13.45 L compared to the competitors and considering the features, VW will be squirming

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and then Oopsy Daisy Time

The forthcoming TV ad,

Three dudes walk in and buy a Cruze with a platinum card after seeing the featured. Cruise and pull up at a traffic light near an Endeavour. The Endeavour windows roll down. A few Sikhs playing Bangra. A drag race results, usual gaali exchange at 100 km/h, and some dangerous driving.

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Ad ends, I am about to stand up when an old man in front rails at them - “what an earth were you thinking? You are contravening the Motor Vehicles act!”

Ashim starts on about youth image etc but Balendran twigs on and cuts him off saying we will discuss this. The ad is not released yet

We then go outside to release car. Few stringers in a hurry and slip into the pond at the side of the steps.

Usual posing.

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I then take a look inside. Again, nothing new except for the stick.
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Summarising, faux pas ad apart, a great package at a killer price. However the chrome and plastics are a little questionable though.

Last edited by ajmat : 28th February 2010 at 18:29.
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Old 23rd February 2010, 20:55   #2
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Nice post Ajmat.

I have booked the car in Jan & finally they are ready to deliver sometime this week ( shortage of white colour in production).

The white car in the picutre, do you have any idea whether its normal white or it is Diamond white, coz they have alloted me diamond white where i have paid 10k extra as premium.

Do let us know.
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Old 23rd February 2010, 21:03   #3
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I saw the Advertisement when it was being shot in DLF V at the time when Cruze was launched.
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Old 23rd February 2010, 21:40   #4
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Thats a good product with really good pricing.

Btw as regards to the ad, GM seems to be perpetually making a faux pas. First it was the Optra TCDi ad in which the car is being driven at 120+ (IIRC) on a hill road. Other offending ads are the i10 where SRK is doing 80+ in city, SX4 where the driver over takes from the left and so on. Just hope that the Advertising Standards Council became a bit more vigilant.
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Old 23rd February 2010, 21:47   #5
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This is the link to the video of this ad being shot, they were driving rashly on Public roads with speedbreakers. They poured loads of soapwater on the road to make the wheelspin look dramatic.

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Old 23rd February 2010, 21:48   #6
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Seems like a great car at a great price. Only thing that goes against this car would be the resale value. Will or will not this car have the same fate as optra.
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Old 24th February 2010, 13:56   #7
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Some info from the Official Press Release

GM India Introduces Chevrolet Cruze Automatic
Diesel performance, refinement of 6 Speed Auto transmission redefines D- segment

New Delhi – General Motors India today launched the Chevrolet Cruze AT in Bangalore at a ceremony presided over by its President & Managing Director Mr. Karl Slym. The manual version of Chevrolet Cruze launched in October has already redefined the D-segment with its coupe-like design proportions, comfortable interiors, class leading features and other exclusive product attributes.

The 6 Speed Automatic Transmission will be offered on the LTZ variant which also comes with a host of features like PEPS, Push Button Start, Cruise Control, Smart Screen and Electric Sunroof to name a few. The Automatic variant will also be available in a special 3 coat paint called White Diamond in addition to the exciting six colors already on offer.

The Chevrolet Cruze AT also has a triptronic mode which enables a sportier drive for the customer. Other highlights of this six-speed automatic transmission include Clutch-to-clutch shift operation for added precision and smoother shifts between gears. Also, it has a wide spread ratio with the first gear designed for a very high ratio to provide brisk acceleration from the top while the sixth gear has an overdrive ratio to keep the engine revolutions as low as possible for highway cruising and improved fuel economy. One of the key benefits of this model is that it uses premium fluids in the transmission that does not need replacement during normal use.
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Old 25th February 2010, 00:51   #8
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I think the competition should be worried....really worried. Especially, Honda, VW and Toyota, amongst others.
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Old 25th February 2010, 01:24   #9
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Originally Posted by V-16 View Post
I think the competition should be worried....really worried. Especially, Honda, VW and Toyota, amongst others.
Yup, the Cruze AT should be an absolute winner in that price range, especially if its backed up with their maintenance schemes.

But that Advt. really, what were they thinking?? I hope manufacturers are not allowed to run ads that blatantly break traffic laws.
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Old 25th February 2010, 02:19   #10
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Nice Report !

Any comments on the ARAI figures for this car? Overseas numbers show a unusually high FE drop for the auto which is kinda worrying.
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Old 25th February 2010, 12:08   #11
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The 'Segment' power point slide looks rather cheap and unprofessionally made
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Old 25th February 2010, 12:37   #12
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Lovely price and visuals. I can't believe they launch a premium product with such pedestrian presentations!
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Old 25th February 2010, 12:56   #13
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That 6-speed autobox sounds delicious. This car really deserves to sell in large numbers.
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Old 25th February 2010, 15:46   #14
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Just saw the car in the showroom today. Looks awesome, still waiting for a TD from the dealers. Will write about it once I do the TD. Oh by the way my friend was planning to buy the Jetta I dragged him to the Chevy showroom after the jetta TD now hes really interested in the Cruze. His dad has doubts and swears by the Jetta, which my friend and I feel is very expensively priced after seeing the cruze.
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Old 25th February 2010, 15:55   #15
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This car has super tall gearing to help FE. 1400rpm@100kph in sixth gear is tooooo tall for my liking, that too in a turbodiesel with so much turbo lag.
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