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Fiat India - Future Plans

Discussion in 'Fiat India News' started by Ravi, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. Raj_pol

    Raj_pol Superiore

    Punto Evo 1.3
    @prabhjot Since FCA has smartly figured out that they will not be selling cars in India and as you say nobody other than MS & Hyundai then why bother? I do not care one way or the other as I do not have financial interests in any company but am curious nevertheless.

    They can exit the car business and concentrate in selling ancillaries (engines, amt etc...) and will continue to do well till Maruti figures out how to make diesel engines or the world clamps down on diesel.

    Your point (c) is a joke - FCA has 2 cars the Punto and the Linea and they are long in the tooth. (d) Abarth is selling the numbers it was meant to sell. It is not a volume car and only in petrol and selling accordingly.

    It will be a disaster if they make a Jeep that looks like a Punto and runs the current multi-jet engines. They need not even bring the same to India.
  2. acechip

    acechip Superiore

    @prabhjot, I know this discussion is really academic when it comes to FCA India, but for academics sake, your proposition that FCA India has "tried" has all the hallmarks of the classic victim card.

    FCA has simply not done any deep analysis of what it would ever take to generate moderate success in a country like India. When the opportunity was RIPE for the Avventura (having created a good buzz at Auto Expo 2014), they took over 7 months post the event to come up with a product, that, obviously worked in some ways and did not in many .Case in point? the stupidly weird mechanism for the rear wheel mount. I really wonder whose daft idea that was-it should go into the list of Automotive Darwins.

    And what took them so long to launch the car in the first place ? The basic body shell was anyway ready as evidenced in the launch of the Punto Evo. Did they take so much time to strap on a well known anaemic petrol 1.4 and a tried and trusted MJD90 ??

    I happened to enquire about the Avventura in Pune (home town for Fiat) multiple times from September through November 14. And no one from the dealer end had a clue about the availability.

    And now they have this ex JLR South African guy who is supposedly balancing those "pillars" . I can only visualise him trying to hold things up aka King Louie holding his crumbling temple from the Jungle Book cartoon film (the old one). Wonder how long he's going to hold on. But jokes apart, this is why the Fiat enthusiasts are pissed off with FCA.

    And no, dont compare FCA India with Toyota, Renault/Nissan or VW/Skoda. They all may be struggling for profits, but all have atleast 1 or 2 solid sub-product "Brands" that they can rely on to keep them afloat or bail them out. When Duster began struggling, Renault took a gamble with Kwid and it has paid off, handsomely so far (whatever be its actual technical prowess). Toyota always has the Innova/Fortuner to bank upon. Despite all the scandals, the Polo and Vento are actually a bit more desirable than the Linea/Punto.

    As it turns out, FCA India is only really relying on the MJD engines,which makes it the typical ancillary maker. The success of the Tata Tiago should leave them mighty worried. Tata Motors is cleverly trying to wriggle itself out of the MJD dependency if the plans for Nexon are anything to go by. Only MSIL is the one that they can bank upon, as it seems Suzuki cant make a decent diesel engine ever on its own.
    Last edited: May 1, 2016
  3. dadasaheb

    dadasaheb Regolare

    MH 12 (Ranjangaon)
    Linea 1.3
    I have got an information that the engines supplied to MSIL are more strictly QAed than the all other components which are coming out of the factory, that is the main reasons of niggles in Fiat cars despite being in very few numbers.
    they are not even caring about the QA of their own products and introducing new features such as left pulling and ambiance lighting from the glove box if one can keep a torch inside it.
    i have proof of all these things as so many DDIS from MS never ever giving any issues and the MJDs on fiat cars facing many issues here and there.
    Raj_pol, fiat_fan and Racing_2012 like this.
  4. zam123

    zam123 Novizio

    Avventura 1.3 90 HP
    you are correct. see my thread "Are fiat cars safe?". More proof of bad QA from fiat.
    dadasaheb likes this.
  5. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr
    I do hope FCA recognizes that the Fiat brand is doomed in india, NOT because their attempts post-2014 have been poor, weak or uncommitted (though they could've been 'better', sure, but according to which 'expert' or amateur management guru??)

    but because their failure to show ANY sales effect whatsoever despite these attempts just shows that the hearsay, the self-perpetuating and self-fulfilling negative and risk-filled perceptions about them are TOO entrenched among the herds of car-information-spreaders, influencers, and darpok-automotive-fools who are the majority of carbuyers in the indian mass market.

    FIAT has been killed, despite the decent/modest/mediocre/whatever efforts post-2014, or will have been (they may yet make the mistake of trying again with the new Punto etc, as per their 2014 plan, which they've stuck to with a delay of several months) by.....

    its so-called owners, fans, enthusiasts, auto-industry-cottage-industry-management-baaps etc etc, who've spared no effort nurturing expectations way-beyond what any other autofirm is subject to, and, what's more, with NO clue as to the economics and finances of the car retail, service, marketing and manufacturing business in India in recent years.

    There IS a reason every firm in india loses money, barring MS, HY, Mahindra and.....Fiat/FCA!

    At this sad and pessimistic endpoint for TeamFiat founders/members, it is good to remember that post-2014, it is 'we' who death-self-fulfillingly-foretold-through-endless-whingeing-and-nitpiking-and-overexpecting-and-impatience, bashed Fiat and its (many/most, not all decent) new-dealers into the oblivion in India that awaits it/them.

    We, the car buyers of middle class aspirational india REALLY should've and should very much stick-to-Maruti and Hyundai+1/2 desi-firms, i feel, by now. I suspect FCA realizes the same too? If all-new models come, there will be 'other' reasons or rather 'excuses' found to NOT-buy Fiats and to crib and bitch or fear or be wary etc. That is how herds of 'rational consumer' opinion operate, so. Cannot be helped.:facepalm::yawn:

    Personally i've no reason to complain about FCA, and so i do not. (Neither does my dad who's also owned 3 Fiats in the past 6/7 years, including a current Punto 'pure' diesel.) My earlier Palio Stile petrol was rather fine and good! As was the acceptability of tata ass here, and my 2014 Linea t-jet's awesome with pretty-good service support (so far) here in dilli-gurgaon.

    I could not care less whether the next-linea came yesterday or in the next decade or never at all....as long as enough others bought/buy and service Fiats in Gurgaon-dilli so that this city-region has at least 2-3 decent after sales possibilities, whether official or unofficial matters not at all. This last is a total given in this city-region, as it is in many others, so.....

    I'll be keeping the Linea for.....'ever', unless and until FCA inevitably offers that sub-Renegade new Punto-platform-based small JEEP (more for exports), say in end-2018!

    "Ciao Baby!", as it says on the inner fuel cap of the Jeep Renegade! ;):(:)
    revvingengines and dadasaheb like this.
  6. asimpleson

    asimpleson Esperto

    Linea 1.3
    It has a lot to do with the KISS principle and also a simpler tidier plumbing and design. Apart from that their famous barrage of MSIL R&D engineers (over 1000 in R&D) who work endlessly on product development and refinements. Have personally witnessed development of a 'superior Swift' for India; it's electronic power steering by third party solution providers (specialists) within India, multiple partners competing against each other to get their solutions approved. Improving for reasons of cost and efficiency and adaptable to Indian environment. Those small but very critical changes not visible otherwise except the reliability, longevity and low cost.

    Quantity has a quality of it's own (if managed well). And it pays off well for MSIL. The engine for MSIL, the mjds are 'supposedly' performing better due to fact that Maruti Suzuki along with their partners in Japan have sought certain improvements/variations from Fiat as well during the development and testing for incorporating in their own cars. Quality processes for Fiat engines for Fiat cars are at par with those for Maruti, adhering to international best practices there. I seriously doubt they could afford to be lax there at engine manufacturing stages. However at MSIL they don't stop with what they have, continuously refining 'their flagship' ddis peripherals. That goes for their entire product range. They have absolute leverage over their vendor partners.
    --- Double Post Merged, May 2, 2016, Original Post Date: May 2, 2016 ---
    @prabhjot, buy it, don't buy it, you cannot ignore Fiat. That is what happens to people. They don't ignore it neither buy it. And aftersales service is infamous and our personal experiences do not matter. Company is trying, has been trying cannot be sufficient reason. 'Jo dikhta hai wo bikta hai'. I have said before and that's the only way for being success in India or perhaps elsewhere as well. Consumers need to endorse products by demanding those. Waiting period for the right reasons; not just gimmicks.

  7. SwifttoPunto

    SwifttoPunto Amatore

    Punto Evo 1.3 90 HP
    Few thoughts:
    1. Has fiat identified which segment to operate on? As someone mentioned in some article, their strategy seems to be confusing. They have Punto Pure to Punto Abarth to Abarth 595. Why the even think that they have to be in Rs. 5-8 lakhs category to exist. Why cant they work completely in Rs. 8-15 or 20 lacs category. There is a market for premium hatch similar to S-Cross. Bring Tipo hatchback or some hatchback which is more than 4 meter with starting price of Rs. 8 lacs. But they should have a variant with 1.6 diesel for sure. Then bring Tipo or some sedan in range of Honda City or little higher. Again 1.6 diesel is must. Bring cute Panda for SUV hungry market in the range of Ecosport/Brezza diesel pricing. Petrol option should be 1.4 Tjet. If they can survive with Punto - Linea 600 odd sales, they should be easily able to sustain with this new product line up which is in higher price category. With this lineup give Abarth, Abarth Punto, etc., it makes sense and people will associate themselves to a little premium category. So, dont introduce new punto in the lower price bracket or introduce only abarth version.

    If they say it requires investment, yes it needs. Till now Fiat has not risked their investment and hence they never got a good return. I hope they no basic risk and return relationship.

    2. Service centres - No need to have numbers. With this mid range products, existence in every major city is what is required. Rural/semi rural can be skipped. Give car owners premium feel similar to Maruti Nexa - Pick up and drop for every car, identified sales cum service agent, extended warranty, etc. As of now I have found service is satisfactory but there other issues.

    3. Keep stringent QC in place both at factory level as well as at dealer level. Even when LHD to RHD change is done extensive testing and complete modification to be done to avoid issues such as left pulling (it is only my guess that left pulling is due to this)

    4. Get all Indian made models crash testing done and advertise the testing result saying safer cars. Now even though global punto is crash tested Indian made RHD vehicle I guess not crash tested hence, they can not even advertise that. This crash testing and advertisement gives USP.

    5. However still there will be issue as India would be moving towards Hybrid and electric, where Fiat has nothing to offer at this stage. If they have bring it at the earliest.

    6. Even if I faced few niggles, I have some complains about Fiat not introducing new product, doubtful strategy, etc., I would certainly upgrade to Fiat product only if they have above line-up and I also suggest others to do so. But only they give that comfort that they have long-term plan in place for Fiat brand.

    7. Announce what they are going to introduce in 2016, 2017. If they announce no harm will happen, but few people who are planning buy something in a year or so will wait (atleast those who believe in Fiat). Competitors wont bother to introduce competing products anyway. But this gives confidence that Fiat is here to stay.
  8. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    The new Jeep c-suv assembly line currently under setting-up at Ranjangaon is a 'small us wide 4x4' one. This basic platform (though not the entire architecture, naturally) is the same as the Tipo sedan+hatch+SW, as well as of course the Renegade+500X+500L+Toro pickup+upcoming Fiat C-suv (brazil+europe). As well as......the 2017 new European-market 'Punto'+ a rumoured 5-door Fiat 500larger-hatchback!

    Any or many of those models can be semi-localized (esp powertrains) here, also for rhd exports.

    i.e., IF and only if there is a rhd export-market for these other potentially India-made models, in other words if 1 or 3 of these models can emulate the new Jeep c-suv approach to India (target Indian market sales VIA India-as-export-base of above-Indian-mass-market-in-quality-and-esp-price/value models), then

    a heavily premium-turn is IMO very doable for the FIAT brand (10/12 lakhs to 18 lakhs) in India.

    To be retailed from a compact but improved and more-viable albeit further-reduced dealer-body=Jeep dealer-body.

    The likelier thing though, am afraid, is that there will only be Jeeps as far as FCA in India goes by 2018/2019: but a new-punto-based say 12-16 lakhs rupee small avatar of the renegade, to accompany the localized c-suv.

    AND: perhaps an affordable, lighter and better/more-fuel-efficient etc ckd-Wrangler (all-new model, out in 2017/18 globally), meant esp for currency-competitive exports to large Jeep demand in rhd Australia and japan? Or so recent statements by the Jeep-brand boss in australia suggest. A ckd all-new Wrangler but with the localized 2litre mjd that FCA will be sharing with Tata for the new safari duo of suv-s (2018).....could be cheap enough to sell in VERY, surprisingly good numbers, by the standards of the Indian 'premium'-priced segments.

    In any case: your point's very very valid, imo. FCA's future here, whether just-JEEP or JEEP&Fiat brands rests entirely on a major premium-positioning-and- pricing and upgraded-dealer-viability-and-quality turn.

    btw, it is worth noting that both Maserati and Ferrari have launched with new dealerships in the last year. Maybe that indicates that FCA sees their future in india as being best-off only via premium and ultra-premium segments/brands/models. Supplemented of course by the engines and amt and existing and future export businesses, which are and will continue to do very well.
    Murphy_Fiat likes this.
  9. Krunal Bhatt

    Krunal Bhatt Amatore

    Punto Evo 1.3
    @prabhjot ,
    Is it really difficult to assemble RHD ad LHD models from same plant? because Nissan is doing that since fairly long time. (exporting Nissan Micra to European countries)

    Also, I also think that turning premium is a good choice for FIAT. I call that a "Top to Down" approach (Bring top end/costlier + Famous models in big cities(along with increasing dealers and service centers) then gradually bring more affordable models. Something that Toyota and Skoda did). But I seriously hope that, its not tooo late for them.

    Having a full grown Jeep sales and service before bringing "New Punto-Based Avatar" of "Renegade" will be very crucial for them.
    --- Double Post Merged, May 3, 2016, Original Post Date: May 3, 2016 ---
    @asimpleson ,
    "Jo dikhta hai wo Bikta hai" That's a universal truth, and thanks for bringing that here. I hope with change in Marketing leadership at FCA India things get improved.

    I think of similar thing when I see the monthly sales analysis of Indian Automotive Industry.

    Wouldn't it help, if FIAT hires 10-15 enthusiasts and let them drive their cars in small groups in different part of the cities, where they have dealership? As if they are privately owned car. People will at least notice and see the cars on road. That, I think can bring confidence to some of the prospective buyers.
  10. asimpleson

    asimpleson Esperto

    Linea 1.3
    @Krunal Bhatt instead why not go aggressively and help dealers clear stocks with some smart pricings etc. I know one DSA of cars in Mumbai who did fairly well in a short time period and was a one stop solution for people looking for deals.

    Also zero percent interest advertisements will help. And so will promoting their dealer names and numbers in advertisements along with toll free numbers to pass on the queries. Things are better in Gujarat as far as dealers are concerned. Fact is current portfolio does not interest people who drive on congested roads. People who want to drive themselves and are looking at munching miles will give some thought to current gen Fiats.

    Also the thing you mentioned about top 2 down approach is already being done by many players. You can see they do that just to give customers a sense of premium options and thereby reflects well on the brand. And if you follow Maruti closely, they always roll out products immediately if some products don't do well. It's like the failures are masked very well.
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
    Krunal Bhatt and prabhjot like this.

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