Indian Autos Thread

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Gerard » 06 Apr 2010 05:59

Land Rover sets record after selling 11,000 vehicles in a month
In February, Tata Motors revealed that Jaguar Land Rover had returned to profit for the first time in more than a year after demand for Land Rovers surged across the world. The luxury car maker recorded net profits of 4.6bn rupees (£68m) in the final three months of 2009, the first profit since the third quarter of 2008.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Chinmayanand » 11 Apr 2010 15:17


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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Skanda » 13 Apr 2010 13:23

Moselle in France woos Tatas to set up its Nano plant
The province of Moselle in France today said Tata Motors should explore setting up a manufacturing unit for the Nano in the region as it could facilitate the company's plans to launch the world's cheapest car in Europe by 2011.

"Tata Motors should take a look at the Moselle province for establishing manufacturing and logistics units for Nano cars," Moselle Development Agency Director General M David Malingrey told PTI on the sidelines of the JEC Composites Show.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Akshut » 13 Apr 2010 21:54

http://www.siamindia.com/scripts/production-trend.aspx

Total vehicles produced in 2003-04 : 7,243,564(Passenger cars : 989,560)

Total vehicles produced in 2009-10 : 14,049,830(Passenger cars : 2,351,240)

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Ameet » 16 Apr 2010 22:01

Mahindra to Buy Renault Stake in India Car Venture

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-0 ... -fall.html

Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd., India’s largest maker of sport-utility vehicles, agreed to take over partner Renault SA’s 49 percent stake in a venture as the French manufacturer separately seeks to expand operations.

Mahindra Renault Pvt. will now be 100 percent owned by the Mumbai-based company, according to an e-mailed statement by the two automakers today. Financial transactions of the deal weren’t provided.

The purchase comes after the venture, which makes the Logan car, became the only company among the 16 manufacturers in India to report a drop in sales last year. Renault will set up its own dealerships in India as it introduces cars from a factory it has built with affiliate Nissan Motor Co. and expand in a nation where car sales are forecast to more than double by 2015.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Suraj » 22 Apr 2010 11:55

Tata May Beat Hyundai in India, Helped by Nano
A Tata Motors Ltd. factory opening this month in western India to assemble the $2,500 Nano, the world’s cheapest car, may help the company surpass Hyundai Motor Co. this year as the nation’s second-largest automaker.

The plant in Sanand will start producing the Nano by April 30 and make up to 250,000 a year, said Debasis Ray, a spokesman for the Mumbai-based company. That’s about 80 percent of Hyundai’s India sales last fiscal year, based on industry data.

Tata now is filling 100,000 advance orders for the Nano. Those sales plus new output may help the truckmaker regain second place after five years in third, said Jatin Chawla, an analyst at India Infoline Ltd. in Mumbai. The boost comes as Renault SA and Nissan Motor Co. plan a rival ultra-low cost car and market leader Suzuki Motor Corp. and Toyota Motor Corp. raise production to target motorcycle owners.

“Profit from the Nano project will come only if volumes are significant,” said Deepesh Rathore, an analyst at IHS Global Insight Inc. in New Delhi. “The new factory is key to boosting volumes and the sooner it comes, the better for Tata.”

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Bade » 25 Apr 2010 19:00

Anyone here has any opinions on the Mahindra Scorpio Automatic ? Any driving experience ? Is there a newer model on the horizon ?

I did not like the interiors though it is definitely in my upgrade list from the Santro as it suits Indian roads, especially the potholed Kerala Expressways with mad drivers with high blood alcohol levels.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Rajesh_MR » 25 Apr 2010 19:20

Bade wrote:Anyone here has any opinions on the Mahindra Scorpio Automatic ? Any driving experience ? Is there a newer model on the horizon ?

A colleague of mine bought Scorpio automatic and was gung-ho till he took it for long drives (BLR - Calicut). He and family didn't feel safe at highway speeds and started taking an extra hour to reach. He sold it off in 4 months. I have read similar experiences in some other forum also. In both cases earlier vehicle owned was a sedan(Corolla and Lancer)

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Bade » 25 Apr 2010 19:34

Did he drive himself ? I have done Cochin-BLR way back in 2005 in a Scorpio with a driver of course. I did not feel anything about the vehicle where it felt unsafe. Is the Automatic version a different beast ?

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Singha » 25 Apr 2010 20:13

the automatic gearbox is sourced from a australian co , not a inhouse product of M&M. reason to feel unsafe needs to be clarified whether something about chassis/ride or transmission. supposed if it missed a downshift in the sloping terrain climbing up the car would lose steam and slow down but why would it feel unsafe? unpredictable gearshifts ?

I have driven my at santro in some hard places like the 36 hairpin bends to ooty, up the mullayangiri mountain near chikmagalur in blinding rain .... never felt any safety issue so far.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Bade » 25 Apr 2010 20:28

Singha, you have an Automatic too? I felt completely safe in my Santro coming down from Gudalur/Ooty side to Nilambur in Kerala. Very steep hair-pin bends there too and night driving. Again, I do not drive in India; just like to have an Automatic in case of an emergency and have to drive myself. Santro has the option to go to lower gear ratio while going downhill.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby manish » 25 Apr 2010 21:09

Scorpio's nervous high speed manners are quite well known - I think the top heavy nature of the vehicle along with its tendency to 'dive' under braking (soft suspension?) seems to be the culprit here. I have not travelled on the newer Scorpios but the Gen 1 Scorpio of yore was notorious for its bad handling. I think they brought in the famed suspension tuners from Lotus IIRC to fix some things in Gen 1.5b/2.0 later. Don't know how effective the changes have been.

Regarding new models on the horizon, the so-called 'Global SUV' from M&M is said to be just around the corner - check TBHP where spy shots have been posted - there seems to be a striking resemblance between the supposed prototype and the Renault/Dacia Duster. Could be a better bet for someone more used to sedans and hatches

BTW Bade saar, what 'expressways' in Kerala are we talking about here? I had a nightmarish time driving on NH-17, 47 and 49 recently on a trip to Munnar. The '17 was especially bad. While '47 seems to be getting some attention in and around Kochi, 17 is hell on earth in North Kerala - narrow, congested and full of ill mannered autowallahs and LCV drivers. Sad state of affairs for what is one of the most scenic NHs around. All the towns along this route have developed too fast and they are all practically on the edge of the highway itself.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Shivlal Vedhavani » 25 Apr 2010 21:32

Indian highways do they have proper banking on curves? do they have camber to drain water?
Indian drivers also need to understand how a SUV behaves during turnings. Recall even though the Toyota Qualis was SUV Indian drivers did not mention the ill effects of SUV for that model. One has to be very carefull driving at break neck speeds of 30 MPH

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Rajesh_MR » 26 Apr 2010 04:04

Singha wrote: reason to feel unsafe needs to be clarified whether something about chassis/ride or transmission. supposed if it missed a downshift in the sloping terrain climbing up the car would lose steam and slow down but why would it feel unsafe? unpredictable gearshifts ?

Automatic had no bearing on the experience. It was due to soft suspension and high ground clearance that made them slow down. It was self driven.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Ameet » 26 Apr 2010 10:47

India's Mahindra interested in Ssangyong

http://in.reuters.com/article/consumerp ... 1O20100425

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby vina » 26 Apr 2010 11:09

I think the top heavy nature of the vehicle along with its tendency to 'dive' under braking (soft suspension?)


Nope. I think basically screwed up track to wheel base ratio. Looks like they copied the Willys Jeep /old Mahindra wheel base kind of thing while increeasing track. That coupled witht he crappy rear suspension, leads to the diving behavior when the CG shifts back front under braking.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Singha » 26 Apr 2010 19:09

in plain greek does it mean the wheelbase is too short for the width of the vehicle?

short wheelbases do generate a nervous and choppy ride even in cars - like the late 90s corolla vs the longer camry/accord the difference was very apparent to me as I owned both at same time.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby rohitvats » 26 Apr 2010 19:24

Just had a dekko at the new Wagon R in one of the showrooms in BLR. This one dwarfs the earlier model. Both of them were placed next to each other and the newer one looked like "BIG DADDY". Also has the newer K-Series engine and claimed mileage of ~18+kmpl.

This one is going to be a clear hit.Saw 4 of them getting booked in 1/2 an hour that I spend there :eek: . ..no wonder Maruti is laughing all the way to the bank.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Singha » 26 Apr 2010 20:26

one thing about maruti is from M800, SX4, Zen estillo and Swift Dzire
(a) due to high degree of indigenization, spares are cheap compared to most others
(b) all have high ground clearance and the type of suspension that has no danger of scraping bottom on the crude speed
humps our road crews love to put up.

in short all of india from leh to nagercoil can buy and use them safely.

hyundai and ford are probably only ones with some desire to take them head on. the new ford fiesta to come
into india is said to be quite good. with Figo they have something saleable in small segment.

at some point MUL will however face the price of success in small cars as more and more people start
moving up into sedans where their SX4 offering is not great vs stuff like jazz, fiesta, ANHC. so long as hatchbacks
continue to be the driver, they will do great.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby negi » 26 Apr 2010 20:45

Narrow wheelbase is for better mileage , i.e. to keep SDRE interested ? :wink:

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby bart » 27 Apr 2010 09:35

rohitvats wrote: Also has the newer K-Series engine and claimed mileage of ~18+kmpl.


The Wagon R gets a K-series engine but not the 1.2 from the Ritz, it gets the 1 liter, 3-cylinder rubbish that is also in the A-Star. The Wagon R engine was never great and now it is probably worse. The test drives by various sites seem to indicate that the engine struggles to pull in the city and requires frequent gear changes.

But that is not likely to bother Maruti's customer base who mainly buy cars based on word of mouth from other similarly ignorant folk.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby vina » 27 Apr 2010 09:52

in plain greek does it mean the wheelbase is too short for the width of the vehicle?

Yes

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby vina » 27 Apr 2010 09:55

negi wrote:Narrow wheelbase is for better mileage , i.e. to keep SDRE interested ? :wink:


Nope. Turning radius is where a short wheel base will have advantage. Too long and it will feel like a truck and too short, it will feel as if it were a Paki Sitara with long overhangs in front and back and pitch like a boat.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby vina » 27 Apr 2010 09:57

Singha, you have an Automatic too?... just like to have an Automatic in case of an emergency and have to drive myself


Bah!. Automatics are for wimmins, wimps and Americans.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Bade » 27 Apr 2010 10:01

vina wrote:
Singha, you have an Automatic too?... just like to have an Automatic in case of an emergency and have to drive myself


Bah!. Automatics are for wimmins, wimps and Americans.


Gee. like jet engines are for wimmins and real men take the dhow. :P

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby nachiket » 27 Apr 2010 10:19

People who can't drive, drive automatics. :mrgreen:

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Bade » 27 Apr 2010 10:29

Automatics have been deliberately kept out of the Indian market, just to keep drivers busy and employed. It is another commie conspiracy onlee. :mrgreen:

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby ArmenT » 27 Apr 2010 10:46

vina wrote:
Singha, you have an Automatic too?... just like to have an Automatic in case of an emergency and have to drive myself


Bah!. Automatics are for wimmins, wimps and Americans.

Used to claim that for years myself. Wife made me switch to an automatic when I bought a new car (though she's perfectly capable of driving stick-shift -- never dated a woman who couldn't drive stick-shift) because she said I usually came in every day swearing at LA traffic. She was right -- driving a stick shift BMW with a heavy clutch pedal is not pleasant in stop and go traffic.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby sinha » 27 Apr 2010 11:48

Bade wrote:Anyone here has any opinions on the Mahindra Scorpio Automatic ? Any driving experience ? Is there a newer model on the horizon ?
I did not like the interiors though it is definitely in my upgrade list from the Santro as it suits Indian roads, especially the potholed Kerala Expressways with mad drivers with high blood alcohol levels.


I have a manual 4wd mhawk (5 months old) and recently took a journey from Hyderabad to various places in Uttrakhand with a friend who bought a 4wd auto scorp (1 month old). I got a chance to drive both. My feedback would be that if you can spend the extra - it is worth it - if you are a highway cruiser and drive it yourself.

The difference is in cornering when the auto downshifts when probably in manual you wouldnt have. The fuel economy diff between the two was about 1.3 kmpl - some of it could be attributed to run-in period, limits on speed and a rather careful driver. You wont find 1/2/3 - only D, R,.N, Winter Mode and the "M" Mode in auto. didnt test W mode at all. If you drive the manual, you will miss the jack rabbit starts at red lights even if you floor the pedal.

As commented by manish, Scorps gets nervous on high speed cornering - but them drive it like a sedan and you are asking for trouble anyway. With (even 3 channel ABS), the braking manners have improved dramatically and it doesnt lock, skid and slide on highways anymore. Havent noticed the dive either.

But it is much more fun than any other vehicle in that segment if you are driving (as compared to safari it wouldnt stop for bad factory QC reasons ;-)), priced lower than endy (or coming Aria), more friendlier service staff who allow you to check on the vehicle while it gets serviced, active fans community and a company which keeps on innovating with newer features every 6 months on the base. You can also complain to anand mahindra on twitter and the M&M cavalry will land up next day to sort out all problems.

If you intend to take it offroad, I would recommend manual. We did some offroarding in hills/ shallow lakes - I felt more in control with manual. The auto climbed a fairly steep loose gravel roads is an "M" mode easily - however while climbing down, we felt it could have had D1 with 4WD lo to crawl (or possibly hill descent system).

as for problems - Try the TBPH Mahindra scorpio issues/solutions thread - there is currently ZERO outstandings against auto gearbox.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Sachin » 28 Apr 2010 21:02

Folks, can any one recommend me a good Bluetooth Handsfree Kit which can be fixed on a car? I had a Movon Mk10 model which could be fixed onto the visor. After 3 years of service, he has decided to stop functioning. The microphone has given up.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby kmkraoind » 30 Apr 2010 07:34

Tata Motors rolls out 'Magic Iris' micro-MPV in Jaipur

Wow, cute, definitely Indians Automobile companies are evolving both in design and innovation aspects.

Image

Priced at Rs 1.98 lakh ex-showroom, the micro-MPV is fitted with a 611cc single-cylinder liquid-cooled diesel engine backed by a 10-litre fuel tank, is capable of running longer distances with a top speed of about 55kmph. With a power of 11.3 PS (higher than small three-wheelers), the engine provides higher pulling power, gradeability and faster trips, resulting in higher earnings for the operator.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Akshut » 30 Apr 2010 21:10

If wishes were horses, then I wish Iris to kick the butts of Bajaj and Piaggio's 3-wheelers off Indian roads. Too slow, dangerous and awfully tacky are only things which can describe those tuk-tuks on our roads. Atleast in metropolitan cities, it should be so.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby RonyKJ » 03 May 2010 20:00

Does anyone know what is happening with Tata Nano production at Sanand?
For quite some time there have been regular predictions of trial production in Jan and actual production in April.
Then there was the announcement that the date would coincide with Gujarat Day on April 30.
Come April 30 and everything is absolutely quiet. To this day there has not been any word on whether production has started
at Sanand. I think there has been some new problem, but why the big secrecy. Our media is so inept in covering this highly
anticipated event.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby ArmenT » 03 May 2010 20:12

kmkraoind wrote:Tata Motors rolls out 'Magic Iris' micro-MPV in Jaipur

Wow, cute, definitely Indians Automobile companies are evolving both in design and innovation aspects.

Looks pretty friendly -- like a character out of the Disney animated movie "Cars". I wonder how good the ride is though.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Pranay » 10 May 2010 22:08

http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/05 ... market/?hp

The Nano's competition on the horizon...

Life at the bottom of India’s automotive food chain is soon going to get more crowded, and a lot more competitive. France’s Renault and its partner, the Nissan Motor Company of Japan, and Bajaj Auto, India’s second-largest motorcycle manufacturer, announced details of a low-cost city car coming to the Indian market in 2012.


Speaking with reporters in New Delhi, Rajiv Bajaj, managing director of Bajaj Auto, formally announced that the car being developed with Renault-Nissan will sell for $2,500 and go on sale by 2012. ”We remain very clear whether the car is 100,000 rupees or 150,000 rupees is not what’s important,” Mr. Bajaj said, according to a report by the Agence France-Presse. “What counts just as much is mileage, maintenance and carbon emissions.”

Mr. Bajaj said the car would have better fuel mileage (up to 70 miles per gallon) and lower carbon dioxide emissions than the Tata Nano. The gasoline-powered Nano is capable of roughly 50 m.p.g. in a mix of city and highway driving. Bajaj Auto said it would keep costs to a minimum via extensive parts sharing between the company’s motorcycle and three-wheeler (auto rickshaw) divisions. This marks the first time Bajaj Auto has built a four-wheeled passenger car.

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Prem » 15 May 2010 00:54

In a First, Truck From India to Sell in U.S.
..BY MATTHEW DOLAN
Mahindra & Mahindra would become the first company to sell an Indian-made vehicle in the U.S. with its plans to offer a compact diesel pickup truck in the country by the end of the year, a top company executive said Thursday.

Pawan Goenka, president of Mahindra's auto and farm-equipment operations, said in an interview that the new truck model has been road-tested according to U.S. government requirements and that the company expects to gain certification from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency no later than July. Production would begin in India in early fall and the truck would arrive in U.S.


http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 ... 05662.html

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby manish » 15 May 2010 09:47

Prem wrote:
In a First, Truck From India to Sell in U.S.
..BY MATTHEW DOLAN
Mahindra & Mahindra would become the first company to sell an Indian-made vehicle in the U.S. with its plans to offer a compact diesel pickup truck in the country by the end of the year, a top company executive said Thursday.

Pawan Goenka, president of Mahindra's auto and farm-equipment operations, said in an interview that the new truck model has been road-tested according to U.S. government requirements and that the company expects to gain certification from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency no later than July. Production would begin in India in early fall and the truck would arrive in U.S.


http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 ... 05662.html

Mahindra's launch plans have become something of a joke in US auto circles. People have lost count of the number of times they have missed their own launch deadlines. The latest one is set to be sometime around August or so - they miss this one, they are almost surely history. Their USP was a small truck with a clean diesel engine - someone else may step in and claim that spot in the market if they keep dragging their feet. Apparently the EPA certification wasn't in their hands yet as of last week or so.

But to their credit, they did generate some positive PR from the US pickup truck community with a first drive carried out by pickuptrucks.com - now they have to ensure that they hold on to it and build on it. I hope they do well!

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Chandragupta » 15 May 2010 15:24

Learned mullahs, need your advice on which car to go for in the midsize segment. I am currently eying the Corolla Altis, Honda Civic & Chevy Cruze. While I like all three cars, I want to go for one that can scorch the road, with good enough luxury & comfort. Also, should I be worried about Cruze being a GM product (expensive spares, lower resale value etc etc)?

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby rohiths » 15 May 2010 16:18

Chandragupta wrote:Learned mullahs, need your advice on which car to go for in the midsize segment. I am currently eying the Corolla Altis, Honda Civic & Chevy Cruze. While I like all three cars, I want to go for one that can scorch the road, with good enough luxury & comfort. Also, should I be worried about Cruze being a GM product (expensive spares, lower resale value etc etc)?


My personal opinion is go for Honda Civic

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Re: Indian Autos Thread

Postby Singha » 15 May 2010 16:20

I am on verge of booking a civic . my r&d and personal exp (owned a accord95 and corolla97 in sher khan) for its 2 paisa.

Altis - solid vehicle, high ground clearance, stiff suspension homologated for indic roads, can take bumps well, higher seating position than
civic, good engine - said to be better at low rpm city driving than civic. looks are subjective _ I like it, wife hates it. slightly better official fuel eco than civic but not noteable. Cons are - pretty dull and outdated looking interior which no brat/fanboy would want - cheesy fake wood trim (late 90s style). its the kind of car a middle aged guy with a driver would buy in theory. it does provide some extras like headlight washer, driving wheel audio controls and power driver seat that civic doesnt. I liked the altis but with wife 100% against, dropped it.
driving has a floaty feel to it (typical toyota style) rather than a sharp steering and feedback (more honda/vwish)

Civic - solid engine but bit weak at city driving low rpm, lower ground clearance - can scrape the BLR style Mt. Meru speedbreakers if you are
not careful with people sitting in the back. low seating position. a self-drivers car - I hardly see any civic with a hired driver. stylish looks with flowing lines and "cat eye" headlights. superb MKI style instrument panel that raised the bar, a three-spoke steering wheel that appeared
later in City and copied by Hyundai. back is capacious enough for 3 adults and floor is flat. I test drove it and the quality of the plastics
and finish was good and noticeably better than the City (esp the dashboard and audio system area). the center console area provides
good storage. Doesnt feature some of the extras I mentioned for Altis. around 40K costlier for the same trim levels. honda manuals are
said to be slick and smooth (I am going for the at). I was test driving in stop-go traffic and there was a second of lag between pressing the
accelerator gently and the torque building up to move the car. it has nice indic features like power folding for external mirrors and since
january features Michelin tyres as OEM. (for some reason BHP fratboys didnt like the bridgestone).

Cruze - unknown quantity. more specced up that altis/civic. doesnt seem to be selling in any huge number. the exterior fitting of plastics
around the doors doesnt seem at the japanese/VW level of smoothness. I havent sat in the interior or test driven it so cannot comment on
that. being a GM, resale value will surely be lower.

if you are willing to stretch a bit more, VW Jetta is also available and proving quite popular with the itvity "senior manager" type crowd.
very nice fit n finish interior and exterior and their diesel engines and trans are said to be top notch. interior is likely to be wee bit smaller
than altis and civic but could my mis-impression due to higher waistline. only complaint I heard was the dashboard was a bit "dull" looking albeit of nice materials and specs. the engine is a bit underpowered in india for size of car.

since you mentioned going for one to "scorch the road" , my suggestion would be evaluate civic seriously and keep aside around 40K to fit new "ricer" :) alloy wheels and better tyres from michelin or yokohama over the stock tyres if you want to go all the way. some people who buy in white also get the red colour H logo which I think comes with the type-R and fit black background HID lights, underskirts and a more aggressive spoiler. even the base civic is the most racy looking and MKish of the four.

for me , I am pondering over silver or green colour - the choice of dealer is also made (magnum honda in blr).

p.s. if you are willing to wait one year , the next-gen civic is expected in 3Q 2011. it will likely feature a more accord like front look
and a more fuel efficient and low emission engine. for my family addition leaves me no option but to upgrade and accomodate the
(upcoming) little new passenger too, I am going in. I did upg my santrosaurus with new tires and battery recently. its 5+ now and
I intend to keep it as a Tejas for 5 more yrs to get in and out of crowded hellish places like commercial street or the odd trip to
national market/railway station/groceries.

another option is Innova - reasonably quiet @100kmph, but buzzy engine at 120 as the lack of power shows. but roomy
and strongly built with solid rear axle. it will take roads which would kill a civic like the famous gudalur route to Ooty.
and indeed it does daily as taxis. folks like stanley leather here can do a mean job upholstering it with your choice of
leather. every "manager" I know has one innova and any other car as the 2nd.


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