creativebala

What Fiat needs to sell more?

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Today I TD'd the new Punto, and still see a lots of scope to improve. Once most of these issues are addressed, I am damn sure, it will fly off shelves.

 

1. Black beige interiors lift from Linea.

2. Chrome grill & also add more chrome in interiors( Indians love Chrome)

3. Change gear box. If possible opt for Indica's one. I feel Vista is peppy.

4. Standardize 90 MJD across variants.

5. Bring ABS as option in Dynamic variant( To attack Swift VDi ABS squarely)

6. Improve Fit & Finish by leaps & bounds.

7. Make the spare parts availablity in Queued format from Fiat India's HQ.

8. Market it very effectively. Rope in a Super Celebrity to Promote this.

9. Bring a Multi Air if Posssible TJet 1.2L Petrol

10. If possible, reduce Turning Radius.

11. This might sound funny, but still. Instead of getting money for giving MJD to Maruti, get K Series engine with Gear Box for every MJD sold to Maruti.

 

Have I left anything else, that could make Punto sell better.

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I've Mixed opinions with your feelings about Punto, bala regarding pointwise;

 

1. Love & eager to see those.

2. Instead of Chrome or Silver painted Grille, Black coloured (from its Active & Dynamic versions) is One of the best looking.

3. Punto suffers from Poor Power to Weight not from Gear Ratios that much.

    Indica Vista is having Palio's Gearbox.

4. Love to see that.

5. Its Okay.

6. Not possible, considering Its already amongst One of the expensive hatchbacks in the country with Present Quality levels & with further leap-bound Improvements Costs will further goes Skywards.

7. Good Thinking.

8. Indian Cricket Batsman 'Yuvraj Singh' is already its 'Punto' Brand Ambassador.

9. Punto petrol will starts from 6-lakh Onwards.

10. Not Possible as its easy to say, Whole of the Steering, Suspension & Chassis Fender Gemetory & Shape resp have to be changed.

11. That'll be the Country's one of the Best Barter System, next to the Indian Mangoes with the American Harley Davidson bikes..

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11. This might sound funny' date=' but still. Instead of getting money for giving MJD to Maruti, get K Series engine with Gear Box for every MJD sold to Maruti.

 

Have I left anything else, that could make Punto sell better.
[/quote']

On a serious note, this can seriously do the trick.

I won't go with too much chrome.

Dynamic ABS is very much in need, I agree.

Fiat needs to incorporate changes and launch a massive ad campaign including the facts and figures that say that satisfaction levels are max. with the Punto.

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Today I TD'd the new Punto' date=' and still see a lots of scope to improve. Once most of these issues are addressed, I am damn sure, it will fly off shelves.

?

1. Black beige interiors lift from Linea.

2. Chrome grill & also add more chrome in interiors( Indians love Chrome)

3. Change gear box. If possible opt for Indica's one. I feel Vista is peppy.

4. Standardize 90 MJD across variants.

5. Bring ABS as option in Dynamic variant( To attack Swift VDi ABS squarely)

6. Improve Fit & Finish by leaps & bounds.

7. Make the spare parts availablity in Queued format from Fiat India's HQ.

8. Market it very effectively. Rope in a Super Celebrity to Promote this.

9. Bring a Multi Air if Posssible TJet 1.2L Petrol

10. If possible, reduce Turning Radius.

11. This might sound funny, but still. Instead of getting money for giving MJD to Maruti, get K Series engine with Gear Box for every MJD sold to Maruti.

?

Have I left anything else, that could make Punto sell better.
[/quote'] Beige interiors will not help to differentiate between Linea & Punto.

And main problem with Punto is its poor fit & finish(interiors), rear space & its power. Also the hatch segment is very competitive now so its difficult to compete against others now.

To me i20 is most classy looking hatchback with superb exterior fit & finish in Indian market & an excellent overall car followed by Polo. And Figo is most practical buy with good blend of space, build quality, power, driveability, equipment, etc. And for Ford to get such a tremendous response says something. Micra too seems to be promising, lets see how it does in our market.

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10. If possible' date=' reduce Turning Radius.[/quote']

Reducing the turning radius = reduction in wheel-base = less space, stability, ride and handling qualities, which are hallmarks of Fiat Punto.

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10. If possible' date=' reduce Turning Radius.[/quote']
Reducing the turning radius = reduction in wheel-base = less space, stability, ride and handling qualities, which are hallmarks of Fiat Punto.

Actually, reducing the turning radius can also be done by letting the front tryes turn further than the maximum turn it does right now.

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My suggestion shall be frowned upon by many but here it is.

Give it to Maruti. A Suzuki Punto will fly away. Brand comes a huge way in success of a car. i20 is miles ahead of all the other cars put together in its segment for only this reason.

Punto needs to sell more for Fiat to survive. From what it is right now, 10 years down the line it will become, I think it was sold here. What it needs to become first is the car that also sold, and only then can it even begin to think of becoming the car that flew off the showroom

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@Rahul

 

I think it would definately work because Suzuki has a brand strong enough to sell just about anything BUT it does not solve Fiats problem which is that it has to establish itself in India as a reliable brand providing good cars for every customer.

 

People associate brands with their strong points (e.g Suzuki has reliability and economy) and I think the products Fiat is selling right now just dont have enough strong points to pull in enough customers. Yes, they are absolutely stunning cars and have excellent ride quality BUT then there are issues in some very vital departments. The quality issues(We can thank TATA for that) and the fact that their engines(especially Petrol) are neither good performers nor economical. Also, we cant discount the fact that Fiat is still recovering the goodwill it lost in India because of the debacles it has had in the past.

 

Considering that I would say they have a long way to go but are not doing too bad. They just need to keep on improving and they will eventually be a successful brand. Giving up and just handing over their products to Suzuki wont help them much.

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I'd like to see some engines with enough 'go' to do justice to the chassis. It pays the penalty for it's tank like build and higher kerb weight. Better fit and finish. Start it's own dedicated dealer and service network.

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IMO, Its better for VW/Skoda to share & re-badge the Fiat cars than Suzuki ones, as Structurally & by Performance-wise they are better suited/matched for VW traits than Suzukis.

 

Start it's own dedicated dealer and service network.

 

That's the best thing for Fiat to Gain a better future & Brand value than its Tata Association & this is already quoted by Fiat India's Rajeev kapoor;

 

& due to Tata-Fiat, Tata is benefitted to the Max & that's only due to Fiat's 1.3 MjD's & FiRE petrols(to the limited extent) & w/o these Tata will definitely have not achieved the No.2 Ranking so soon.

& Tata Indica Vista/Manza w/o Q.Jets are just the Boxes of Steel.

 

Come on, Fiat guys see Ford & GM-Chevrolet stands well on their own feet in India today, after so much years of continous struggle. Considering they've entered India at the same time.

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Dear Bala you have covered many points. Punto price is still in the higher end and to survive it has to compete with Figo. recently I got one mail from Fiat that it launched central locking for Punto Active and it costs around ten thousand where as central locking for Linea is only around four thousand five hundred. The seat of Punto should be adjustable for all models since the roof is so low for 6 feet guy there is no problem but for 5 feet guy seat is very low. so also front pillars since it is too slanting visibility is poor while in curves. Fabric trim should have been there in all models to conceal dull plastic on doors.Even though the hatch back is lengthy rear space is not so good. Can't Fiat reduce the thickness of seats. It should reduce weight to increase power or should not have launched 1.2L on Punto. Let Fiat be more practical since Indian customer is always aware of value for maney

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The seat of Punto should be adjustable for all models since the roof is so low for 6 feet guy there is no problem but for 5 feet guy seat is very low.

 

The total car height of GP is 1495 mm when compared to POLO - 1453 mm & FIGO - 1427 mm. It would be difficult to maintain the prices if height adjustable seats are given for all  models.

 

Fabric trim should have been there in all models to conceal dull plastic on doors.

 

All cars manufacturers do the same due to prices.

 

Can't Fiat reduce the thickness of seats.

 

If seat thickness is reduced, ride comfort will not be there

 

 

 

 

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Punto suffers from worst power to weight ratio. Although deisel cars have a cosiderable portion of sales, it is still petrol which make up the numbers (70-75%) of sales, and that is where punto is beaten to dust by compitition. Only other car having a similar power/weight ratio is Figo, but it is priced sensibly and you can buy a deisel vesion for a price of punto petrol.

There was a suggestion to get KB-12 from Maruti. I don't this it is needed. If Fiat is serious then they can come out with a Punto with Twin-air engine.

This engine, in my opinion, can satisfy all the conditions of power, econimy, emission, excise duty benifit, performance etc. The R&D cost can be recovered by mass production instead of selling in small numbers but at a premium. I have compiled a list of hatchbacks selling here:

Hatchback

Kerb weight

CC

Cylinders/Valves

Power

Torque(Nm)

Power/weight Ratio

Suziki Swift

980

1198

4/16

85@6000

113@4500

87

Suzuki Ritz

1005

1198

4/16

85@6000

113@4500

85

Honda Jazz

1055

1198

4/16

90@6200

110@4800

85

Chev. Beat

965

1199

4/16

80@6200

108@4400

83

Nissan Micra

945

1198

3/12

76@6000

104@4000

80

Volk. Polo

965

1198

3/12

75@5400

110@3750

77

Hyundai I20

1065

1197

4/16

80@5200

112@4000

75

Ford Figo

1040

1196

4/16

71@6250

102@4000

68

Fiat Punto

1140

1172

4/08

68@6000

  96@2500

60

Fiat Punto with Twin-air Turbo

1050*

875

2/08

85@5500

155@2000

81

 

the twin-ait engine is just 85 Kgs, which will reduce the Punto weght by almost 45-50 kgs. I think Fiat can further reduce the weight by another 40-50 kgs, which will improve its power to weight ration to 80-81, which will be a very good start.

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Very poor show by Fiat this month.

From 2025 in Oct to 1025 in Nov.

Punto, if released with good spec, interior & price, should be doing more than 5000 every month. Fiat missed the boat, its brand is as bad as Ford, but they are doing so good with their dull looking Figo.

 

Wake up Fiat, I can't see Punto dying. Save it.

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Fiat sales are going down every month. If this is the position we will not see Fiat cars on road very soon.

 

What is the strategy that Fiat India is going to adopt to keep them alive. They have a very good line up of products and still not doing good numbers. A car like T JET IS NOT SELLING, UNBELEIVABLE.

 

MY IDEAS:- The best strategy that i would suggest Fiat india is to open up new service networks alteast in major cities in India first followed by all the cities covering in reasonable span of time. What sort of attitude of Fiat India this is. "I WILL JUST SELL THE CAR AND I AM NOT BOTHERED ABOUT THE AFTER SALES SERVICE".

 

The after sales service is one of the critical factors for success in the Indian car market which is the mantra for success for Maruthi and Hyundai. Why Fiat is not understanding this.

 

A tie up with Tata for service network has improved . Yes i admit that but this knowledge is only for the people like us who discusss things on the forum. For a common man, he will always have an attitude that Tata service is not good for their cars itself and then how will they serve for the Fiat cars.

 

Also the step motherly treatment by the Tata people is one more reason for the failure of Fiat cars in India.Infact when i had visited to see Manza, occasionally i was checking out the Fiat Linea, which itself was not the liking of Tata sales man. The dailouge which he said was. Saaaar everthing is the same saaar, then why you have to spend 2.5L more for Linea when compared to Manza Saaaar.

 I was requested by the Tata showroom people to check out Manza. Indeed my idea was to buy Manza only.
rki20072011-01-04 07:12:24

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Fiat need to bring in budget model that can compete with Santro, Indica, Beat i.e. under 4L (on-road) and should give free service packages just what Chevrolet did.

Fiat still has a typical impression in the minds of consumers as "Premier Padmini" because it was not called ' Padmini ' but it was called ' Fiat ' only. So premium products such as Linea or even Punto with more powerful engine etc... may not work for Fiat. 

There is a very small group of people who really know what Fiat is. But for other Fiat cars are

- Expensive in terms of its Badge 'FIAT'

- Low mileage

- higher maintenance cost.

- costly spares

- Lack of service centers.

Fiat UNO was successful with its Trend model and Diesel option because when they launched UNO Trend it was the only diesel hatch at the price it was offered.

So there is bad need for VFM product from Fiat and that may save it.

Also Fiat need to work seriously on mileage figures of its vehicles. Even if they are impressive Fiat should promote its mileage figures than the other qualities such as (Designed by the famous Giorgetto Giugiaro of Italdesign).

If we observe the sales figures (http://archive.autocarindia.com/autocar_forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=7921&PN=1) most of the budget cars have performed for their respective companies such as for Chevrolet (Spark & Beat), Hyundai (Santro, i10) , Tata (Indica, Nano), Maruti (Alto, 800, WagonR, Omni, EECO), Mahindra (Bolero).

What Logan did for Mahindra - A successful entry in Sedan segment by UV / SUV manufacturer.  This is because Logan is VFM product.

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Fiat need to bring in budget model that can compete with Santro' date=' Indica, Beat i.e. under 4L (on-road) and should give free service packages just what Chevrolet did. [/quote']

The segment which Fiat is in is not one where there are not good volumes. In Linea segment, all cars are raking up aound atleast 1500 with City even crossing 5000 a month on occasions. In the premium hatchback i20 is raking up 7000 a month while Polo has a waiting period of 3 months. It is priced significantly cheaper than segment leaders for both of its cars, and both of the are very well loaded. VFM is not a factor here.

Nor is servicing an issue. Just look at Nissan nos. They have got it to 1000 unit/month with a car that is called as girly and average on all departments with only 20 dealers. Imagine what havoc they would have created with dealership like Fiat. Also look at VW nos Waiting period of 3

months shows what brand power is all about.

The factor is Fiat is not trusted anymore here. It would be better to build a whole new brand here than getting its fingers burned again and again. There is no harm in that. Man companies like GM, Suzuki, VW Ford do that.

It will help Fiat earn significant revenues and also not deprive the owners from driving well engineered cars. That is the best they can do. Supply technologies to manufacturers like Maruti, who will sell cars like rice grains, meaning more volumes and more royality. I am pretty sure that Fiat even now earns more from MS than it does from TataFiat combined in India.

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@ Rahul 1810-- You mean to say that Fiat should just sell the engine to Maruthi and others and get the royalty is it?

 

I am talking about the brand image bleeding here and not the revenue part.

 

For your information, waiting period doesnot show the brand image rather it means low production or the plant is in competant to match the requirement. I have seen so many people cancelling the bookings of Polo because of the waiting period. If they have a trust on the brand image, why not wait for that long period. Infact they have sold only 1975 cars in the month of Nov 2010. Is this called demand is it. What company is that which can't even maintain a production of atleast 5000 cars a month.

 

Micra is not girly and the wide growing dealership of Nissan is the encouraging factor that people are buying Micra. Micra is not average in all departments. Infact it is a car with good and unique features in the hatchback segment and the 1.5 Ldiesel engine is really a pleasure to drive without any turbo lag and it is VFM.
rki20072011-01-04 09:44:40

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Fiat need to bring in budget model that can compete with Santro' date=' Indica, Beat i.e. under 4L (on-road) and should give free service packages just what Chevrolet did. [/quote']

The segment which Fiat is in is not one where there are not good volumes. In Linea segment, all cars are raking up aound atleast 1500 with City even crossing 5000 a month on occasions. In the premium hatchback i20 is raking up 7000 a month while Polo has a waiting period of 3 months. It is priced significantly cheaper than segment leaders for both of its cars, and both of the are very well loaded. VFM is not a factor here.

.

This is where Fiat fails. It needs to bring in right product mix to build its image.

Fiat considers that whatever their world best product should get success in India as well but things are different here.

The segments (i20, Polo , City etc...) where Fiat is positioning its products (Punto, Linea) are not accepted by the consumers.

What Chevrolet did ? - Came back to basics and selling more beats and sparks.

What Ford did ? Developed Figo attracting mass base of consumers than to introduce New Fiesta. 

Even in case of Maruti the numbers prove that VFM products are more successful (800, Alto, WagonR). No need to mention swift because it is in an entirely different league.

Other problem seems to be similar products by Tata and Fiat which drives away the consumers.

When prospective buyer enters showroom looking for (Hatch / Sedan) he is bound to look at the options available and for sure they will purchase a product which gives a right value for their money.

As against Fiat's (Punto and Linea) products Tata's products (Vista and Manza) may be preferred due to its image of low running costs. 

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I think Fiat gained a lot of positive image with the launch of Linea and Punto but they somehow managed to squandered it(third time).

 

Reason being

- Quality Issues (Tata's fault)

- Poor A.S.S (Tata's fault)

- Negetive impact on brand image due to association with Tata which when compared to Fiat, a lifestyle brand is a lower rung company still considered to be a Taxi brand by quite a few.

 

I believe the only way to ressurrect their image is to disassociate with Tata in terms of A.S.S and Sales Network and continue to bring in excellent value for money products.

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Also, they should change their petrol engines portfolio.  Their FIRE engines are neither performers nor fuel effecient and they have -ne image since the days of Palio. 

 

They should bring the new generation engines or develop an engine specifically for India like others. They can see this from the 1.4 T-jet Linea. No where, in any forum discussions or reviews, you will find a complain about this engine regarding FE or performance.

 

OR, they can bring in 900cc Twin air 85bhp engine for punto and its planned naturally aspirated 68 bhp version can become the engine for future small car. And 1.4 T-jet can be made available for sports version of punto and all versions of Linea.

 

This way they can have complete family of  cars based on just these two engines.

 

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