Can FIAT Re-Establish Itself in India?


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My view on this is different.
TATA has reach to masses. I know A.S.S is concern, but i don't think FIAT will be able to match the reach of Tata.
What FIAT should do is to make sure their customers are happy. Right now they should concentrate only on making/launching more cars in India.
Totally agree with you. Regarding A.S.S., I would love to see an improvement. But it should not be like Maruti. Why do they have a service centre just about anywhere? Because their cars need a service centre just about anywhere. Fiats on the other hand are extremely reliable cars. I can say this from experience after 1.75 lakh Km of driving Fiats. (1 Lakh in the Uno and 75K in the Siena/Petra).
 
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Fiat designs are better. I have worked on uno in my workshop days and my mechanic explains there design plus. Each and every part is place by thinking 1000 times before placing them. Now present generation palio have best design under the body.
Have not seen punto and linea's underbody , but i am sure they too must be best.

India taxing policy makes linea have a 1.3L engines. If this is relaxed we can expect a 2000cc mills.

A small eg , a 4 years chassis bolt is much more difficult to open in indicas , where as its as new in a 10+ year old uno. This proves there quality and design. Fiat has its own lovers. Day by day its increasing. So sure Fiat will success.
 
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Totally agree with you. Regarding A.S.S., I would love to see an improvement. But it should not be like Maruti. Why do they have a service centre just about anywhere? Because their cars need a service centre just about anywhere. Fiats on the other hand are extremely reliable cars. I can say this from experience after 1.75 lakh Km of driving Fiats. (1 Lakh in the Uno and 75K in the Siena/Petra).
Would have to disagree with the implied statement that Maruti's are not reliable ... 5 Marutis under the belt, and it had never once given me any trouble on the road, worse than a puncture!!
Service stations are required, for regular servicing, and the more there are, the better.
Just one SS in a city will lead to high handed approaches by them, since you know there is no other choice.
When it comes to SSs, the more the better, the competition will only keep them wanting to improve customer satisfaction to retain loyalty.
 
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Would have to disagree with the implied statement that Maruti's are not reliable
Fiats are definitely more reliable than Maruti's. Infact the old Maruti's were much more reliable than the newer ones. Quality has gone down over the years.

Just one SS in a city will lead to high handed approaches by them, since you know there is no other choice.
When it comes to SSs, the more the better, the competition will only keep them wanting to improve customer satisfaction to retain loyalty.
My +1 to that.
 
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Fiats are definitely more reliable than Maruti's. Infact the old Maruti's were much more reliable than the newer ones. Quality has gone down over the years.
I suspect the perception of falling quality has to do with the dropping %age of import content ... the up side is the reduced costs.
 
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Perception is changing : Rajeev Kapoor

I saw this interesting interview with Rajeev Kapoor


Please tell us about FIAT India’s plans for 2010…
2009 was the first year for us…The Linea was launched in January and we have picked several awards for the car including car of the year. So it was a ten month run for the Linea. The Punto was launched in June so it’s been five months. 2010 is going to be the first full year for both the cars. For any car to make an impact it takes time but January so far has been very satisfying, we have already sold about 23,000 units in such a short time and I’m expecting to double these numbers for FIAT brand in India.

In terms of the range for 2010?
We are showcasing the Punto Trendz which is aimed at youngsters – it has bright colours, a good sound system, taking out all the unnecessary frills that raise the price but NOT compromising with the safety, drivability which is now becoming the trademark of the FIAT brand. We are displaying a very high-powered Punto which is 90bhp, which practically becomes a racing car with all the safety features intact. So these two cars will be hitting the road this year as far as India is concerned. We also have feed back on the Linea – a lot of people like the car but are gasoline drivers who feel it is underpowered at present. So we are showcasing a Linea with a turbocharged gasoline engine developing 110bhp and this car will be launched this year. This will actually be the top end Linea in the range. All the standard up-market features will be there. So now we have completed the range – there is a Punto for everyone and there is a Linea for everyone. We will concentrate on these for the next twelve to fifteen months before we think of doing anything else.

We have displayed here a Bi-fuel which is a very high-end technology in terms of CNG and gasoline. There are some very unique features in this Punto – one is the boot space we have been able to create by hiding the CNG tank. Second, in this car, using Fiat and Magnetti Marelli’s technology together the car runs like any other car. Depending on the throttle response the system decides which fuel it wants to run on and keeps on switching back and forth. Also, the filler for the gasoline is the filler for the CNG too. So it’s like a normal car. With both the tanks, the driving range of this Punto is about 1000km which is a long distance.

There are no Palios here – does that mean you are phasing it out? If not, will you be making any changes to the range?
No, the Palio has not been phased out, it is very much there. It’s just that there was only so much space available to us! It will continue in the same avatar however.

The perception of FIAT – spare parts, service-related issues – what do you need to do to change it, take Fiat higher in everybody’s esteem?
Well, there were three phases of Fiat. There was the joint venture with the Doshis, after that it was the full operation of Fiat which is the time the Palio and the Uno were launched and the latest phase which is a joint venture with the Tata Motors. While the cars were launched in 2009, the work on strengthening the service and spare parts network started in 2008 itself. We have established a separate warehouse of spare parts in Chakan, we have reduced the logistics bank, stocking norms have been established, and the training of dealer mechanics is being done by us to understand the technology of Linea and Punto. We have regional training managers but we also have a training centre in Ranjangaon. We also have flying doctors.

What is Fiat First about?
Because of the relationship with Tata Motors, we got the opportunity to establish 65 new dealerships in January 2009 which otherwise was just not possible. Today we are 99 strong. Because of this, I have launched the extended warranty program called Fiat First. 54 months of coverage of which 24 months are from us and the balance from the insurance company. As far as the customer is concerned, he is getting a 54 month warranty. Nobody offers that. We have a roadside assistance program also. So the perception is changing but you will agree with me that perceptions take time to change.

Source - wheelsunplugged
 
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Seems like Fiat is very serious here! But still there are many people out there who think that Fiat vehicles are hard to maintain , they should work hard to change this perception!


@ Peter i do agree with you that Fiat cars are reliable and not that difficult to maintain after seeing you have driven them for long! But Maruti is also not so bad as you say. My friend who is having s Swift drives likes a maniac but still his car hasnt disappointed him anytime till now. His car is almost 5 years now! Maybe your dealer out there in Goa is not good enough. In fact many of my relatives and friends having Maruti products here in Chennai have never complained like this!


And the reason for having many A.S.S is necessary for Maruti. With so many sales accounting for them only few A.S.S in a city will not do them any good as there will be a large pool of vehicles waiting to be serviced then!![:)]
 
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Can't comment on Fiat, having never had owned a fiat, but as I said earlier, Maruti quality is nothing to scoff at.
But the dealership experience you had is not acceptable.
 
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How A Brand Was Repositioned

Marius D’Lima, Head – Corporate Communications.
Over the past couple of years, Fiat has witnessed a strong resurgence in the Indian auto market. While sales and marketing teams having played a significant role in the upturn in Fiat India’s fortunes, the company’s corporate communications team has been instrumental in garnering high overall visibility for the brand. This, coupled with proactive communication of the attributes and activities of the Fiat brand to mass consumers has contributed to a growing change of Fiat’s image in the minds of Indian buyers. By developing an overall strategic perspective that can be executed in an engaging manner which will reach out to the Indian public, Fiat’s corporate communications team has looked to consolidate the position of Fiat amidst an ultra-competitive Indian auto market.
Until two years back, Fiat was seen as a company with a bleak service network, suspect after-sales service and a strong association with the “black and yellows” that ply Indian roads. Although far from the brand’s actual positioning of classy, stylish and efficient cars, the perception served as a hard-hitting truth and a tonic for revival.
Over the past few years, the image of Fiat, one of the world’s most significant auto companies, has begun to take radical reshaping in India. By closely understanding the brand positioning and value of the Fiat brand, the corporate communications team has over the last couple of years taken a number of steps to etch the values of style, class and efficiency into the minds of Indian consumers.
The first major step taken by Fiat was the glitz-laden launch of the Fiat 500 in India. The Fiat 500 or Cinquecento is a car that signifies ultimate style and luxury. It portrays beauty, panache and is seen as a true collector’s item. A car made for a very niche market segment, the Fiat 500 had already enjoyed widespread success globally. The launch of the same car in Indian markets was Fiat’s first step towards rewriting existing perceptions by showcasing the company as a creator of stylish cars. The Fiat 500 was launched by stunning Bollywood actress and ex-Miss Universe Lara Dutta. The association of Ms. Dutta with such an iconic car clearly earmarked Fiat as a brand redolent of beauty and style. It was also an important brand-building exercise that helped animate Indian consumers and made them look forward to what resurgent Fiat had in store next.
After the successful launch of the Fiat 500, Fiat India then went on to launch its two marquee cars – the Fiat Linea and the Fiat Grande Punto. Through these launches and the media coverage that ensued, corporate communications was effectively able to create an aura of class and style around Fiat cars and dynamically change the previous perception of Fiat’s image. By elaborating on the cars’ stylish looks and efficient performance, Fiat could successfully convey what it stood for – class, style and efficiency.
The overall task was also to significantly enhance consumer brand recall amongst the Indian public. This was ensured, in a proactive manner, through the dissemination of periodic announcements throughout the year. These announcements – such as Fiat closing a syndication of Rs. 2,500 crore and the Fiat Linea crossing 10,000 units within the first 10 months of its launch – ensured that Fiat as a brand received a high level of recall for Indian consumers. It also helped showcase that Fiat as a brand was both dynamic and highly proactive in its media approach.
With Indian car buyers now having a clearer picture of Fiat’s positioning of class and style, the corporate communications team conducted two high-decibel activities towards the end of 2009 to drive the point through. The first activity was the launch of ‘Fiat First’ – a comprehensive service program. Having gained sufficient visibility thanks to the car launches in the year, corporate communications now wished to convey Fiat’s unrelenting commitment towards quality customer service. The launch of ‘Fiat First’ did just that by making customers aware of the fact that Fiat buyers could now avail of 24x7 roadside assistance that makes the Fiat experience completely hassle-free. With the successful launch of Fiat First, Fiat was able to show Indian consumers that it had been able to identify mistakes from the past and rectify them swiftly and efficiently.
The second high-decibel activity conducted was ‘Fiat Diesel Drives India’ – an epic pan-India drive spanning over 10,000 km and passing through 16 Indian states. Flagged off on 27 October 2009 from the company’s Ranjangaon plant, the drive gave journalists from top auto journals, electronic channels, publications and websites the chance to take four of Fiat’s multijet diesel offerings – the Linea, Grande Punto, Palio and Fiat 500 – across India on a true test of endurance.
The entire month-and-a-half activity was organized with the aim of confirming Fiat as the pioneer of diesel technology in India as well as showcasing Fiat’s large and expanding service network.
By allowing auto experts to experience the cars over varying terrains themselves, Fiat created a positive perception through these opinion-makers. The experiential and enjoyable aspects of the cars through the words of opinion-makers were seen as the catalyst for change in Fiat India’s brand image in the minds of consumers.
Alongside this, the drive also offered the perfect opportunity to showcase Fiat’s large service network. To publicise this fact the company conducted media events in 14 cities that the cars passed through. These cities, which were also identified as media hubs, allowed Fiat India to garner sufficient visibility for its service network as well as its pan-India drive.
Finally, in order to further emphasise Fiat’s brand positioning of style and class, the company conducted photos shoots. The pictures of Bollywood actress Aarti Chabria and the models Paloma, Deeksha Shetty and Garima appeared in lifestyle supplements across India on the days following media events in those cities. This activity was then followed by a glamorous end to the drive with leading Bollywood actress Neha Dhupia and her model friends Anchal Kumar, Alecia Raut and Sandhya Shetty. These four ambassadors of style drove the cars for the final stretch of the drive and through the finish line. By carefully identifying and associating with iconic Indian beauties through the course of the entire drive Fiat India was able to transmit the key message of being a stylish and classy brand.
All this has gone a long way in establishing Fiat as a major player in the Indian market again as well as reigniting the love and passion amongst car buyers for a brand that has always been style and class personified.
 
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And above most of all their deal with TATA has done a world of good to them!

Fiat cars was always liked by most people due to their sturdy build and great styling but many people feared only the A.S.S!! This was sorted out after their deal with Tata!!
 
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Tata-Fiat opens new showroom in central Mumbai

Tata-Fiat today opened a new showroom in central Mumbai - Galaxy Motors. The showroom is based in Mulund and will be central Mumbai’s flagship Tata & Fiat passenger car outlet.

S Krishnan, vice president, Commercial – Passenger Car Business Unit inaugurated the showroom. Krishnan and Vikram Munshi, managing director, Galaxy Motors said that it’s not just about selling cars, but it’s about a better brand experience. The large swanky showroom certainly does have what it takes to provide the residents of Mulund, Bhandup and Thane a better Tata & Fiat brand experience and will help in better sales in the central suburbs.

Backing up the large showroom, is a fully equipped sixty-four bay service center just a few minutes from the showroom in Mulund making it one of the largest service outlets in the central suburbs as well.

Tata Motors has been expanding its dealer and service network in an effort to be closer to prospective consumers, and with Galaxy Motors now part of the Tata family, they do hope that they can sell a lot more cars in the face of newer competition and retain their chunk of market share.

With both the Tata and Fiat brands launching new variants and products through the year, this new dealership will no doubt, help bolster Tata’s sales numbers in the city of Mumbai.

carwale
 

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Slowly but steadily and surely FIAT is coming back in India.
Rebuilding the brand image is one of the toughest tasks for any company but FIAT against all odds seems to be hitting the right spot.
Kudos
 
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This is great news! Unlike the Renault-M&M venture , this Tata-Fiat venture is doing wonders for Fiat and is one of the major reasons for the rising of Fiat again!!

I was just wondering half way through the report that rather than showrooms service centers are only important and was happy to know that they have opened service centers also!![:)]
 
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This is great news! Unlike the Renault-M&M venture , this Tata-Fiat venture is doing wonders for Fiat and is one of the major reasons for the rising of Fiat again!!

I was just wondering half way through the report that rather than showrooms service centers are only important and was happy to know that they have opened service centers also!![:)]
Just felt like mentioning that this joint venture has done wonders for TATA as well.
1. Multijet technology
2. Suspension ans Gear Box
3. Access to FIAT's international markets.

One major thing that most people do not realize is that being with FIAT has improved TATA services and dealerships manifold. Being exposed to working with a foreign brand is a different experience all together.
I worked with one of the TATA FIAT dealers in Jaipur as a Sales Ex. for FIAT and i know how strict FIAT was about how to park the cars in the showrooms, where to put the banners, even the distance from the banners from the ground!!
 

350Z

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Continuing the discussion from sales thread, Astonishingly, Punto and Linea aren’t still doing up to the mark as they should have been, and reason is quite clear – Most of the buyers are still afraid about the long-term reliability and after sales back-up. Though, Fiat has initiated free service camps, warranties etc, it is not enough to convince the public. Shouldn’t fiat do something through advertising or other means to convince buyers about their After Sales? This is the actual point where they are lagging and offering only some most value for money products is not sufficient, and it has been now proved.

Drive Safe,
350Z
 
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