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News on 2017 all-new Punto (x6h) + Grand Sienna (x6s) for India, Brazil etc

Discussion in 'Fiat Global News' started by prabhjot, Apr 8, 2016.

  1. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    The all-new Punto underoing durability testing in mule-form in Brazil. The Punto is also being tested and part-engineered/designed and tested in the usa and in italy (there are mules sighted there too).


    500 million$ investment in the Fiat plant in Cordoba, Argentina for the making of the 2017 all-new Grand Sienna, the sedan avatr of the new Punto. This model will be a c-d-segment 'tweener' that replaces both the current Grand Sienna AND the better and more expensive Linea. It is designed as part of the FCA LatAm 'premiumization' strategy for all of the new models. The strategy is going well so far, despite the recession there: the Renegade, the Toro life-stylised 4-door pickup, and the entry-level MOBI a-cuv releasing any day now.

    It remains to be seen whether the new Punto and Grand Sienna will follow the general design language and grammar of the Tipo/Aegea models. Doubtful: likelier to have more lively, more sporty-young, more 'aspirational'/'emotional' less-'sober' design.

    These models will in Brazil be offered with the next-gen, FIRE replacement petrol engines (the Global Small Engine or GSE family of modular engines, 3 and 4 cylinder, all-aluminium, high torque with 2 valves per head, low emissions and high efficiency, less bhp, inexpensive and durable.) Later the t-jet 16v Fire (multiair or not) will be replaced with a variant of the new gse one (it is still near-enough to benchmark to carry-on for a while yet, even in europe.) What entry-level petrol engines the Indian Punto and GSienna get in 2017/18 remains to be seen.

    The Brazilian press from sources is reporting that these cars WILL get: traction control, ESP and amt+ddct automatic versions too.

    The european all-new Punto replacement, now very reliably/credibly rumoured to ALSO get a high-spec, high-style 500-lineup-of-models dissimilar-twin, in 2017 will, it is being said have a different chassis and suspension engineering altogether from the less-expensive brazilian+indian new Punto+GSienna.
    Hebbar, revvingengines and Amit Rox like this.
  2. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr


    This is obviously longer than the Jeep c-suv that is fully-firmed-up design and engineering-wise and will begin being-produced in Brazil in september or so, followed soon after by manufacture for the usa+canada markets in Toluca, mexico, and of course in China as well as india in early/mid-2017. The Jeep Renegade manufacture in China has just begun. And of course there is also the hit Toro pickup in brazil/LatAm, also off the susw (4x4) platform+architecture-family.

    This early mule is very, most-likely the quasi-officially rumoured Fiat-branded c-suv twin of the new Jeep c-suv/Compass. i.e., Toro suv version, possibly 5+2 seater, being notably longer than the Jeep c-suv. i.e., Dodge Journey and Fiat Freemont replacement, likely badged a Chrysler (in its N American avatar) and a Fiat elsewhere.

    The only real doubt and debate is whether this c-suv, meant to go up against the Nissan Qashqai/Rogue etc, will be in its euro version at least be styled a la 500 (like a 500XL?) or will it take on the edgier more modernist and athletic lines of the Toro/Jeep Cherokee? That matters greatly to the suv's marketing and pricing, since materials and fitments on the 500 lineup of 'emotional, aspirational, chic' models are notably better and more expensive than say the more Fiat Tipo/Aegea-like hyper-value-and-quality-for-lesser-money models.

    Am guessing: the latter, since that'd be more in keeping with the Dodge Journey philosophy (it was a pioneering model: a minivan 7-seater in effect but styled like an suv long before such a thing was common), and would enable competitive LatAm accessibility too price-wise?

    It will surely be localy-made in China too, alongside its susw mates the Renegade and the new Compass. India, though: unlikely, not even for rhd exports say to the likes of Australia.
  3. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    According to this, quite credible, auto site with a good record of inside scoops in Brazil: the new 'Punto' (x6h: to be made in betim, brazil) and the new 'Grand Sienna' (x6s: to be made in cordoba, argentina) will be very similar in design (and many components shared?) with the Tipo/Aegea sedan+hatch+sw.

    i.e., they'll be on the lines of the european Punto+linea vis-a-vis the brazilian and indian Punto+Linea. Their platform or rather architecture under-the-skin will be different for cost reasons. The latter were based on evolutions of the Palio platform+architecture, while the former were based on the scss one shared at that time (2005-2009) with GM/Opel (Corsa, etc.)

    The Tipo trio of models, like the Renegade, the Toro pickup, the 500X, the upcoming Jeep c-suv and a Fiat(+Chrysler?) twin of it are based on a 'modular'/'scalable' platform+architecture family that is an evolution of the european Punto+Linea one, now called small us wide, capable now also of 4x4 applications as in the Renegade, the Toro and the upcoming c-suv.

    i.e., the current production lines and tooling setup for the indian linea and punto are usable (at least dimensions-wise) for the Tipo size and platform vehicle, slightly and inexpensively amended: i.e., = the new brazilian Punto+new grand Sienna which could closely resemble and share a lot with the european Tipo (a little smaller in width and length presumably). I don't know whether the current lines and tooling etc are being remade for the Jeep c-suv (and its 2 Tata siblings) at Ranjangaon, or whether the latter are entirely seperate lines+toolings/robots etc, being as they are heavily for 'first world spec'/'world class' exports.

    At any rate Ranjangaon will have the ability to cost-effectively manufacture everything from the c-suv and renegade (?) + 500X (please FCA!) to the Tipo-s to the latter's brazilian siblings, the 'new punto', 'new avventura' and 'new grand sienna', plus the strongly-rumoured punto-based Jeep b-suv emerging-markets-special.

    They already have cost effective and Indian-market-best tubopetrol and turbodiesel engines, and will apparently be making the new 6-speed transmission here too (for the Jeep c-suv, used also on the Tipo-s, Renegade et al), alongwith hopefully the ddct and the MM amt's already locally made.

    i.e., THE problem is not cost-/price competitiveness BUT (a) the absence of suitable available replacements in europe or esp brazil for the indian punto and linea, until now/2017 (b) the weaknesses of the FIAT brand itself, making big and several all-new launches too expensive and risky, in the Indian mass market (c) the un-exportability of current india-made models, ergo very low capacity utilization.

    Problem (c) will be assuredly addressed via the Jeep exports of the c-suv(2017 second quarter, Mike Manley said to ET recently), plus hopefully after it of the Indian 'Renegade' (seen testing in india aplenty of late) and/or the new-punto-based smaller, cheaper Jeep b-suv (e-markets-special).

    With the Tipo trio + the brazilian avatars of it (new Punto, Grand Sienna etc), as well as (why not?) the 500X and/or 500L, problem (a) too no longer exists as an impediment.

    BUT problem (b) is a humunguous one, added to which is the IMO lack of exportability in good numbers of even the 'new Punto', 'new Avventura' et al. Marchionne just announced that there wil be NO replacement for the Punto (affordable b-hatch) in europe, and that there is no need for a b-cuv cheaper and smaller than the 500X/L there either, given the great sales of the Panda and Panda 4x4 there currently and foreseeably.

    IF the JEEP indian manufacture +brand/marketing plans play out well by 2018/19 (C-suv+Renegade and/or the small punto-based Jeep), together with the vital and central exports, FCA may well be best-advised to shutter FIAT in india as a mass-market brand at least, leaving it as say an Abarth-type cbu/ckd brand (500, 595, 124 Spider, 500X, 500L....) a la MINI?

    IF however cost-synergies via the india-made and -exported Jeeps (shared platforms, powertrains etc) are great enough, they could still launch the brazilian Tipo-relatives: 'new grand Sienna', 'new Punto' etc, if nothing else then just to be funnels for sales of the more affordable india-made Jeeps and as (fewer) dealership-viability-underpinning models.

    My own hope and advice to them would be to 'go high' as a strategy (i.e., strictly non-mass-market): strictly c2/d-segments price positioning-wise. i.e., the 500X+Renegade (desi lower cost editions)+low cost not-newPunto-but-in-Jeep-clothing small em-special suv, perhaps also the Fiat Toro pickup based c-suv that will accompany the Jeep c-suv in Brazil and Europe (at Creta or xuv500 or upcoming Tata Safari like prices)? A rhd 500X can be exported too to japan+Australia+korea etc, after all, while the 'new Punto', 'new Grand Sienna' cannot even if they're great propositions, styled and well-priced like their euro siblings, the Tipo trio.

    It all depends on what it takes in terms of Jeep sales to buttress the financially-struggling dealerships and after-sales centres for the medium-term. If these are not large enough, well then they'll have to make the financially difficult and ultra-risky decision of whether or not to try-again with Fiat-as-a-mass-market brand.

    The poor export demand for the new Punto, new Grand Sienna et al is what makes it a chicken-or-egg type decision for FCA in India, in case sales of the india-made Jeeps are not large-enough for dealers' longer-run viability. In that case, they might need a back-to-Tata-dealerships type 'deal' with someone else (GM? VW? Tata? Suzuki Nexa?) since by-now it is clear that it is the dealers and aftersales financial viability and quality that is of the ESSENCE in the indian market, not models, engines, safety, design, lifestyle/brand-identity-image.
    Hebbar and revvingengines like this.
  4. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr
    Got news/confirmation from an fca-italy insider of some sort (via the allpar usa forum) that the Brazilian/Indian(?) 'new Grand Sienna' will indeed 'just' be a european TIPO, more or less, but on a less-expensive 'platform', namely the next, lightened and strengthened iteration of the Palio '326' one (used currently in India for the Linea and Punto). That is a 'scalable' one so exact dimensions may differ slightly from the european Tipo.

    Presumably the 'new Punto' and 'new Avventura', on that very platform/architecture, will be 4m or less though, unlike the Tipo hatch which more like 4.25m. The Renegade and 500X are similar to the Tipo hatch dimensions-wise, too. So an affordably engineered Renegade(like) version (as an emerging-markets-special) may also be plausible cost and price-wise for India off this 'platform' that is already in use at Ranjangaon.
  5. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    The MOBI is the a-cuv, the heavily redone UNO is now the a/b-cuv, for Brazil and Latam-in-general 9esp Argentina and Mexico) BUT with the first of the all-new GlobalSmallEngine family: the FIRE family will be very-going/gone by 2018 in Brazil as well as Europe (new cars), except presumably the t-jet multiair which will be replaced by its version of this moular gse family only after 2018.

    It is confirmed that, in brazil and LatAm, the Renegade will be the smallest Jeep foreseeably, in LatAm that is, there is very likely, almost certain to be one for Europe cum Asia-Pacific (not China or Australia?), made mostly or entirely (?) in India: it will be FIAT that will get, in Brazil/Argentina, Mexico, etc, the new-Punto-x6h-based b-cuv, apparently finishing testing soon, a replacement for the Fiat Palio Adventure (latest gen) and the IDEA small-roomy-cuv.

    ALL these cars are based, afaik, on heavily lightened and strengthened versions of the 326 'Palio' platform, the very one the Indian Linea and Punto+Avventura are built on.

    FCA can, but will not for obvious reasons, swarm the Indian market with these 3 small cuv-s, complete with bleeding-edge yet economical to buy and run small, high fe, good-emissions engines, to go with the mjd, just as this market, like Brazil's is making a wholesale shift towards 'cuv'-s.

    After all FIAT created the global-genre of the small cross-over, with the original Panda 4x4, if that credit does not go to Suzuki with the original cut-price Wrangler-small-clone: the Jimmy/Gypsy, or the joint small CUV model the first SX4/Sedici.

    Suzuki knows all about this segment of b/a-segment cross-overs, and like FIAT has 'pedigree' at it: which is why they'll be gobbling up everyone's biryani in India once they've launched the Ignis, the next-gen Gypsy/Jimny, the revamped Scross and eventually the european+latam Vitara. With Fiat diesels and/or transmissions of course, which they rely on so much for their current inexpensive cuv-success in Europe!

    IF ONLY Tata Motors comes to its senses and adopts these new FIATs as its own, for India, built at the Ranjangaon jv, perhaps even the 'new Punto' and 'new Grand Sienna' (next-gen Vista/Bolt+Zest), BUT

    my sense is that Tata Motors is currently too drunk on their jlr profits and are intent on blowing-up thousands of crores trying to develop their own 'comeback' cars for their desperately-needing-to-comeback brand, so-battered, ever since the tragic and farcical, not to say exorbitantly expensive NANO debacle in the marketplace, nevermind the free Sanand plant land and other tax freebies. They also have very-large overcapacity issues at their non-Ranjangaon car-plants (sanand will be much better in this sense, thanks to the Tiago and its sedan derivative.)

    THAT'd be the only way FCA would launch any of these cars-as-Fiats in India, come say 2018 or 2019 (including the 'new Punto' and its Fiat suv-twin.) Else, the business case is exactly: hopeless, in India, for these perfectly, or so one-would-imagine, suited-to-India brazilian FIATs. I think we'll ONLY get the JEEP Renegade-like version of the 'new Punto' platform SUV, the b-suv, 10 lakhs plus, instead.

    Unless Tata Motors and FCA extend their joint JV-work further, well-beyond the new Jeeps+Tata 2 SafariStorme replacements+desultory/last-leg-Punto-Linea-Avventura-Vista/Bolt-Manza/Zest, by a wholesale adoption of this all-new Fiat Brazil model-range.

    Hope it happens (Tata Motors realizing the infinite financial stupidity of developing its 'own' models in all cases, not learning from the NANO-Bolt-Zest debacles) Tata Motors will never manage to compete, financially-speaking in terms of profitability, with MarutiS, Hyundai-Kia and Mahindra, Toyota-Daihatsu (2020), unless it focusses on where it is strong in India (its brand-trust and general affection for the Tata name) rather than on engineering/'innovation'/'design' or other-such. They should leave the latter, good as their's may be, to FCA/FIAT-via-Brazil.

  6. asimpleson

    asimpleson Esperto

    Linea 1.3
    @prabhjot it will of course depend on what views Tata takes on these matters. Clearly going solo hasn't exactly been a hit so to say. But volume wise they have managed a few success examples here and there. That said yes a joint platform sharing with creating a third identity/firm/front could possibly help them all. I think sometimes that Mahindra was and is a better candidate to invest in their models/platforms and has earned reasonable if not total trust in a section of 'practical use' buyer group if you will. Meanwhile they are all getting the consulting needed for getting the powertrains right for sometime now. That includes Tata too.
    prabhjot likes this.
  7. nkrishnap

    nkrishnap Staff Member Janitor

    Linea 1.3
    It is going too far to say TATA is drunk and not seeing what is happening around them. Their offerings off late are right up there or better than the competition. I would say FCA is drunk and high and keep making the same errors again and again.

    Love is good, but blind love isn't. No matter how many long posts you make, very little will change with Fiat in India.
    vista7155 likes this.
  8. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    The 'drunk' I was referring to was ONLY the 'financial': the very remote possibility of tata motors being able to earn a return on their exorbitant albeit very brave commitment of Rs3000 or more on all new models, dealers, huge marketing and multi-year-long brand-revival.

    THAT is why imo they ought to adopt (for eg) FIAT's brazilian range as-their-own: they'll save on r&d and development costs, get class-leading powertrains, while ensuring a focus on what really distinguishes the TATA name, even on cars: a certain trust, a certain degree of respect, a certain original-desi-but-good image, etc.

    imo FCA India is NOT at all drunk, and has not been in years. They've been repeatedly incompetent in operational details, BUT most of all they've deeply conservative with capital, very/too risk-averse and half-hearted with investments, since FCA's prorities have been elsewhere (first the usa, then europe, now global+luxury+china) globally for the last several years, due to the merger of Fiat Group+Chrysler Corp.

    IMO that risk-aversion has proven justified, given the complete failure of so many other autofirms too in india to earn any returns, indeed to accumulate loss-upon-loss.

    I agree that FIAT in India has no hope in India, but where i disagree is that i hold this EVEN if they suddenly displayed the 'aggression' and 'commitment' and 'wisdom' to attack the Indian marketplace properly. Why? because the way the market is stuctured by-now makes it impossible for a troubled-history-brand like Fiat and its dealers etc, in terms of sheer-quantity of investment and risk-capital-commitment.

    We sometimes mistake car sales etc as a 'game' where 'if only he had played that shot!' or 'if only the coach had trained the team in that way etc'. It is NOT: only because it requires large amounts of capital with very very high risk of expensive failure. TATA have taken-on that risk, finally (thanks to their humunguous JLR profits) but imo they'll struggle for too long to earn back their capital.

    FCA has no such large-spare capital for FIAT in India, even if FIAT stood any sort of chance anymore, which it does not, imo. Under Marchionne FCA, globally, by now: seeks to grow OTHER brands (Jeep, Alfa, Maserati, Chrysler) in OTHER places (China, luxury segments globally, etc), depending only on their being bets-worth-taking-because-not-too-expensive-or-too-risky.

    hence: the 1600+ crores investment, Jeep+exports+fewer dealers, etcetera, in India. A lot has already changed for the better with FCA in India (since Mr. Flynn's arrival, since the dismal failure of the Enrico plan: Avventura etc +the sacking of Nagesh B), more will am sure.

    Just NOT for 'FIAT', the brand and the dealers+cars, which should be retired-hurt and sent back to the pavilion. It is beyond them, in terms of risky capital/investments AND in terms of competence and imagination, to make the FIAT brand do-better-enough in India, given the nature of the Indian marketplace by-now, and given the brand's epic-negative-inertia here.
  9. avi_loveindia

    avi_loveindia Amatore

    Grande Punto 1.2
    Deepak likes this.
  10. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    delhi ncr

    The 'new Punto' is undergoing further testing in Brazil, as are the new applications of the new Firefly (i.e., fire and t-jet replacement engine faqmily: GSE, Global Small Engine family.)

    The 'new Punto' comes in 2017 to Brazil with the new Firefly engines, the 'new Grand Sienna' comes only in 2018, made in Cordoba, Argentina.

    Meanwhile, India sees (or so it seems) the development of the b-suv sibling of the 'new Punto': in the form of Jeep Renegade mules? India is an old centre of JEEP basic r&d, with a Jeep specialist technical centre in Chennai from the Chrysler Corp (pre-Fiat/fca) days.

    It seems obvious that the 'new Punto'+'new Avventura'+'new grand Sienna' plan for India (2013/14) is completely in abeyance till the JEEP c-suv/new Compass and the Jeep b-suv (based on 'new Punto') are launched. i.e., till 2018 at the earliest, IF then.

    In any case the 'new Punto' and 'new Grand Sienna' will only be ready by end-2017+2018, in any case, in Brazil, so THAT would not constitute a delay as-such.

    It remains to be seen whether they've already decided to pullout FIAT from the Indian mass market, or whether the decision is merely in abeyance till 2018 or so for India. My bet is, sadly: the former, largely because it seems impossible for Indian 'new Punto' etc to be exported much to anywhere (no demand for rhd models.)

    OTHER than, just maybe, a Fiat twin of the Jeep new-punto-based-Renegade-like b-suv: the 'new Avventura'??

    Come on fca india, give us a 4m 'new Punto' based, affordable and smaller avatar of the 500X, just as JEEP will in India get one of its euro-american twin, the Renegade!
    PradeepM likes this.

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