Random Thoughts... [Automotive Edition]

rickhamilton620

has a fetish for terrible cars
Joined
Nov 28, 2009
Messages
16,720
Location
Yoe, PA
Car(s)
2012 Kia Forte EX
I 2nd Laxmax, I wish VW would sell Skoda's here...it could be the Kia to them being Hyundai.

I do wonder if VW's apparent quest to put Skoda "back in their place" so to speak, will have any negative effects on the brand's perception as a whole? - http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/10/volkswagen?s-reprisals-the-derefinement-of-skoda-begins/

EDIT: http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/08/hyundais-elantra-touring-i30-gets-the-family-makeover/

UGH. Another redesign...ruined. I liked the fact that we got the wagon version of the i30 instead of the hatch, you got real cargo space and good visibility.

 
Last edited:

argatoga

Can't Start His Wank
Joined
Oct 4, 2005
Messages
17,995
Location
Seattle
Car(s)
'13 Moto Guzzi V7, '08 Pontiac Solstice GXP
If you think about it that way...it's a full Lotus Elise heavier than my car.
Or the new Camaro drop top is around two and a half MG Midgets in weight. :p
 
Last edited:

narf

Sgt. Maj. Buzzkill
DONOR
Joined
Feb 1, 2008
Messages
18,167
Location
Kiel/Wherever, Germany
Car(s)
'19 BMW M240i
So clever. Just too clever.
Now look at their slogan :blowup:

I do wonder if VW's apparent quest to put Skoda "back in their place" so to speak, will have any negative effects on the brand's perception as a whole? - http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/10/volkswagen’s-reprisals-the-derefinement-of-skoda-begins/
Economically it would be stupid to dumb down Skodas. Per car VWAG is making much more money on a Skoda than on a VW.
As a result every customer Skoda steals from VW is a net gain in profit while it only is a small loss in revenue. Skodas are cheaper, but switcheroos from VW to Skoda tend to splurge for more options/bigger engine/bigger car. Pay a bit less, get a bit more - big gain overall.
Additionally, not every Skoda customer is a former VW customer, I'd say the majority isn't. Those are taken from other manufacturers, helping VW along on their quest to world domination. Cue obvious German past reference.

Their only "problem" is the lack of a true low-low budget brand, what Dacia is to Renault. Now, I don't think you need such a brand, but VWAG might think otherwise. I say go Suzuki for the low-low budget version, not ruin Skoda's growing reputation of brilliant design and quality. Such a reputation is priceless, making a quick Euro off that would be bad in the long term. IMO the entry level Fabia is already low-low budget enough while being large enough for a family as their only car.
 

laxmax613

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
4,071
Location
Tel Aviv, Israel
Car(s)
Merkavim Mars
The problem is that in many places they still sell Dacias as Renaults and Nissans because of brand cache. And Geo, GMs supposed low-budget brand, fizzled. I think that these types of brands work theoretically, but when you try it in real life, people see that what they're buying is just a crappy version of something better, or, in the case of VW buyers, an unnecessarily expensive version of something only marginally worse. These type of brands need their own cars which don't cannibalize their parent company's offerings. Something fun and cheap and to the point. A good example of this is the Skoda Ahoj concept car, which made it clear that its intent was to be a cheap first car with added durability and functionality. It knows its market placement and stays there. if it would ever get sold.

 

Spectre

The Deported
Joined
Feb 1, 2007
Messages
36,751
Location
Dallas, Texas
Car(s)
00 4Runner | 02 919 | 87 XJ6 | 86 CB700SC
Trying that didn't work out the way it was supposed to for Toyota and their Scion sub-brand, though. Instead of attracting youth to their new brand, they mostly had middle-aged and old people buying them. :lol: The average age of an xB buyer is... 46.
 
Last edited:

laxmax613

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
4,071
Location
Tel Aviv, Israel
Car(s)
Merkavim Mars
That's because their 'street' branding backfired and the youth didn't feel they could identify. The Skoda I posted reflects no such branding. Rather, it's a total lack of branding; just a car with a purpose, not a "lifestyle vehicle".
 

Spectre

The Deported
Joined
Feb 1, 2007
Messages
36,751
Location
Dallas, Texas
Car(s)
00 4Runner | 02 919 | 87 XJ6 | 86 CB700SC
That's because their 'street' branding backfired and the youth didn't feel they could identify. The Skoda I posted reflects no such branding. Rather, it's a total lack of branding; just a car with a purpose, not a "lifestyle vehicle".
You might want to ask Daewoo and Daihatsu how that worked out in the US. :p
 

laxmax613

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
4,071
Location
Tel Aviv, Israel
Car(s)
Merkavim Mars
Quality is key here. Key. Those products were subpar and couldn't last through the rough-and-tumble jobs that buyers of an entry-level car put them through. My Subaru is an excellent entry-level car because it's damn-near bullet proof.


I initially confused that for a two-door Panda :lol:
Well then you're a terrible Skoda fanboy. A terrible fanboy, indeed.
 
Last edited:

narf

Sgt. Maj. Buzzkill
DONOR
Joined
Feb 1, 2008
Messages
18,167
Location
Kiel/Wherever, Germany
Car(s)
'19 BMW M240i
Well then you're a terrible Skoda fanboy. A terrible fanboy, indeed.
:blush: that was a compliment though, the Panda is a great entry-level car.


They should make more public use of these, around here you barely notice their involvement.

 
Last edited:

laxmax613

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
4,071
Location
Tel Aviv, Israel
Car(s)
Merkavim Mars
Oh i agree about the panda. Excellent example of what I'm talking about. So, as a recap of my points:

A good entry-level car brand must be:

--free from overt and extreme "lifestyle vehicle" branding ala Scion, Cube etc.

--Utilitarian

--High quality

--far enough away from the parent company's main product line so as to assure the smallest chance of model cannibalism.


Good examples are the Fiat Panda and Toyota Aygo. I'm trying to think of more but those really hit the philosophy on the head.
 
Last edited:

Spectre

The Deported
Joined
Feb 1, 2007
Messages
36,751
Location
Dallas, Texas
Car(s)
00 4Runner | 02 919 | 87 XJ6 | 86 CB700SC
Actually, the Cube is selling well, and it's more marketed as utilitarian and funky than lifestyle. Damn things are EVERYWHERE here. Honda's Element also did well. Not sure they really need entry level car brands (especially with US car prices like they are).
 

rickhamilton620

has a fetish for terrible cars
Joined
Nov 28, 2009
Messages
16,720
Location
Yoe, PA
Car(s)
2012 Kia Forte EX
Trying that didn't work out the way it was supposed to for Toyota and their Scion sub-brand, though. Instead of attracting youth to their new brand, they mostly had middle-aged and old people buying them. :lol: The average age of an xB buyer is... 46.
Nearly every youth oriented car I can think of in recent memory skewed like that. The Element and Aztec also come to mind.

You might want to ask Daewoo and Daihatsu how that worked out in the US. :p
My dad came *this* close to buying a Daewoo.....the dealership folded a year or two later. :p

Quality is key here. Key. Those products were subpar and couldn't last through the rough-and-tumble jobs that buyers of an entry-level car put them through. My Subaru is an excellent entry-level car because it's damn-near bullet proof.
I think it has to be seen in the context of time. Your Subaru is a great entry level car, but at the time when it was introduced it was definetly not entry level, so the quality is better, the materials are too, etc.
 

Spectre

The Deported
Joined
Feb 1, 2007
Messages
36,751
Location
Dallas, Texas
Car(s)
00 4Runner | 02 919 | 87 XJ6 | 86 CB700SC
Yeah, I didn't know love of awful cars was a hereditary disease.... until now.
 
Top