The Development Process of an Automobile


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Here is an article compiled by MOTORBEAM.

He has defined the pain taken by a company's organisation process to make a new car from scratch to the hands of the customers. How their planning to decision making to implementation to final prototypes and testing is described. Many people simply brandish the R&D team and useless and ridiculous, but in true, customer preference, project viability, financial returns, and many more need to be calculated to come to a conclusion to ground a final outcome.

Please read this article and you will know the true pain of a manufacturer to ground one single product.

MOTORBEAM said:
There is a lot of work which happens before the vehicle goes into production
It is quite common for humans to like or dislike a product; and when that product is an automobile (two/four wheeler) it becomes much more complicated. Design, performance, fuel economy, price etc. are the deciding factors for buying an automobile. You may be using a Celerio AMT or a Honda CBR250R; every vehicle has a story to narrate. Just a few questions before jumping into the article –
– Why did Maruti use an Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) in the Celerio?
– Why did Honda launch the CBR250R in the Indian market when hardly any Ninja 250s were selling in the market?
– Why is Mahindra still testing the Mojo or DC doing the same with the Avanti?
Ever thought of the above questions? If yes, could you find out the reason? If you didn’t then the answer is here. Just like any other product even an automobile undergoes a life cycle where it undergoes different phases before fading out in the dark. Let us understand how an automobile model comes into existence.
Market Research – Did you know that the Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) was the outcome of the feedback of few lakh customers? Companies pay heftily to independent and marketing agencies to carry on market research for products; which incurs crores of rupees with months/years manpower engagement. The agencies reach the root levels, the customers and take their feedback. Ever been to a showroom and asked for a feature in a bike/car? If yes, then there is a chance for your opinion to be taken into consideration. It may be one of the smallest thing you would have asked for, remember your opinion can be an input for a future bike/car. One should understand that not every ‘wanted feature’ gets noted but the ones which are frequently asked by customers goes into the note. Now a days companies have gone digital to collect data in the form of polls.
Business Case – Based on the inputs received from the market and benchmarked data, a report is generated. Detail specifications such as vehicle category (hatch/sedan/compact SUV or dual eg. Polo/Vento etc.), engine (displacement, power, etc.), transmission (manual/automatic, no. of gears, etc.), vehicle dimensions, features, target market, investment, return on investment and so on are put up in a report. It is in this phase the crucial decisions are taken which includes usage of existing features or whether to bring out new options.
The below cases are just taken as examples and may or may not match with real scenarios:
The latest offering from Tata Motors, the 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine; the company must have been in a situation to use the current (older one) or develop a new one. The company had to upgrade the portfolio perhaps by offering something really new and that was one of the reasons for opting for a new engine. Apart from that, factors such as new/future vehicle specifications, customer feedback, future pollution norms also play an important role.
Read more at MOTORBEAM
 
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it takes years to build a prototype, it takes days or hours to just reject them.its like you have nurtured it like BABY ( i.e R& D design, Company) AND someone just comes and chops it off ( Customer). The pain they( i.e R& D design, Company) might feel while we do this is beyond words. but yes in the end its for the customer that they make the offering.
 
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it takes years to build a prototype, it takes days or hours to just reject them.its like you have nurtured it like BABY ( i.e R& D design, Company) AND someone just comes and chops it off ( Customer). The pain they( i.e R& D design, Company) might feel while we do this is beyond words. but yes in the end its for the customer that they make the offering.
The Pain they feel Especially when a Brilliant Car fails in the Market because of Us,Customers,can never be described by Words.Many Years,Hours spent of Painful Labour and Clock-work and Mathematics,Science go on.It's we who actually decide the Fate of the Cars like Nobody's Business ! I still cry for some R&D Guys for how wonderful they did Cars like the Mondeo,Palio GTX,Matiz and the Pain they could have went through when these cars Fail in the Market.More pain is experienced when the car is Class-leading or is better than the Competetion in every way.Seriously,I wanna thrash every single person who Under-rate many Great Cars and Manufacturers.Respect to the R&D.
 
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thats the reason in english we have a saying," beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder". so everybody is a judge as long as its for him/her ( Customers)
 
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Here is an article compiled by MOTORBEAM's Nischal Gadhavarjula.
I read through the article. Nothing new has been stated there. It is known fact that every product goes through a life cycle. Not only in car or two wheelers but also in all consumer products this is true. Even in IT industry, software products are developed and marketed by companies. Some products are appreciated and some are criticized. One should be prepared to accept both success and failure with even mind.

After spending all effort and time, if the result is mediocre product then nothing wrong in criticizing the team, which will be the stepping stone for better products.
 
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Mr.Ashbabu no offence however TATA NANO is one of the brilliant piece of engineering according to me. The process it underwent. so many extra hours spent by the design team and the R&D team so on and so forth when it was unvailed how many us did praise be honest to your heart and tell me. the Legroom on the rear seat puts any sedan to shame. The Cost at which it was introduced just to keep the promise made to customers by Mr.TATA did anyone appreciate it. it was criticised everywhere. i also remember one person saying we dont have enough roads to run such vehicles which are so cost effective which any man can afford. due to this there will be traffic congestion. to build roads is the job of a government not an industrialist. not everytime do we appreciate every good thing.
 
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True. All of you here had valid points. Most of the sales duds were due to the products mishandled by the companies. Let's take some products.

Many CBU by Ford, Hyundai, Maruti, Chevrolet, etc., had launched. But some had their own troubles. CBUs caused high prices and made them unviable to compete with the more worth competition. For example, Forester, Kizashi, Vitara, Vectra, Mondeo, etc.

Some manufacturers misjudged the market, eg., TATAs with ARIA. Wonderful product but high price.

But Nano was a different story. To keep the product at low price, certain compromises caused mishaps and caused fire and pain. Coupled with deprived ergonomics like power steering made the product undesirable for many. But it surely created a stir in the world market and owned by the people who owned luxury cars but not the desired target, the large lower middle class who travel on bikes.
 
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Mr.Ashbabu no offence however TATA NANO is one of the brilliant piece of engineering according to me.
No issues incarnation. Agree with your thoughts on Nano. But for a product to succeed various factors need to combine together in the market. For example Fiat MJD engine used in any Maruti car or Tata Zest is selling but look at Fiat manufactured cars. So here do you criticize the engine design team? Big No.

But the end customer will criticize the product only. I don't think most of customer will analyze and pin point exact department like Design, Marketing etc.

But it surely created a stir in the world market and owned by the people who owned luxury cars but not the desired target, the large lower middle class who travel on bikes.
Agreed. My personal opinion is that Tata misjudged Indian thought process. In India owning a car is considered as a status and prestige symbol. A car is just not for commuting from point A to point B (though that is the purpose). So marketing Nano as cheap car might have been a mistake which deterred middle class. May be they should have marketed Nano as City Traffic car - easy to drive in traffic, parking and reach destination safely. Or as Additional Family car for easy commute.
 
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I still cry for some R&D Guys for how wonderful they did Cars like the Mondeo,Palio GTX,Matiz and the Pain they could have went through when these cars Fail in the Market.
You dont have to cry, due to these cars were failed here because these neither designed for India nor a sales dud when we looking at sales of all other countries. You can see many different versions(old & new) of Ford mondeo in countries like USA and only one model they launched here.Same story with palio also.Even if GTX varient failed here, there are other varients uses the same paltform,engine etc in many countires.So it is not at all a sales fail. Regarding matiz i dont have to tell, because it was not at all bad in sales and it still sells as Spark.

Mr.Ashbabu no offence however TATA NANO is one of the brilliant piece of engineering according to me. The process it underwent. so many extra hours spent by the design team and the R&D team so on and so forth when it was unvailed how many us did praise be honest to your heart and tell me. the Legroom on the rear seat puts any sedan to shame. The Cost at which it was introduced just to keep the promise made to customers by Mr.TATA did anyone appreciate it. it was criticised everywhere. i also remember one person saying we dont have enough roads to run such vehicles which are so cost effective which any man can afford. due to this there will be traffic congestion. to build roads is the job of a government not an industrialist. not everytime do we appreciate every good thing.
I am one of that guys, who dreamed nano will change indian autmobile market like Reliance done on mobilephone sector in india. BTW i was one of the earlier Reliance custmer in Kerala and would have bought nano too. I backed due too their bad dash & seat design and non openable hatch.
Agreed. My personal opinion is that Tata misjudged Indian thought process. In India owning a car is considered as a status and prestige symbol. A car is just not for commuting from point A to point B (though that is the purpose). So marketing Nano as cheap car might have been a mistake which deterred middle class. May be they should have marketed Nano as City Traffic car - easy to drive in traffic, parking and reach destination safely. Or as Additional Family car for easy commute.
Either they would have to design nano as a 1 lakh car and sell it at that rate continuosly or extend the proposed rate to 2 lakhs and design it as a complete hatch back car and compete with M800. Tata understand their fault and changing it on snail's pace.
Now nano's price is at par with Alto, still they didn't given a openable rear hatch and good dash, which is not an issue with Tata.
True. All of you here had valid points. Most of the sales duds were due to the products mishandled by the companies. Let's take some products.

Many CBU by Ford, Hyundai, Maruti, Chevrolet, etc., had launched. But some had their own troubles. CBUs caused high prices and made them unviable to compete with the more worth competition. For example, Forester, Kizashi, Vitara, Vectra, Mondeo, etc.
+100. Companies done this for the sudden increase of their product list here, at custmers money. They would have required lot of money and time to make that products in India.


No issues incarnation. Agree with your thoughts on Nano. But for a product to succeed various factors need to combine together in the market. For example Fiat MJD engine used in any Maruti car or Tata Zest is selling but look at Fiat manufactured cars. So here do you criticize the engine design team? Big No.

But the end customer will criticize the product only. I don't think most of customer will analyze and pin point exact department like Design, Marketing etc.
people know Fiat products are good, but they think when they have other better options(interms of service & spares) available, why need to go for fiat and worry better go with Maruti for same product.
think about success of Renault Duster, It was new product and new company for Indians with less ASS than fiat, still many gone for that. Why? no other options in that segment i guess.
 
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