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Is the Ford Figo really cheaper than the Maruti Swift on maintenance costs?

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  • Is the Ford Figo really cheaper than the Maruti Swift on maintenance costs?

    For the past couple of years Ford has been shouting from the rooftops that it has the lowest maintenance cost especially for the Figo, compared with other premium hatchbacks such as the Maruti Swift and Hyundai i20. This low cost of maintenance apparently went down even further with the new Figo launched a few months ago – it applies to both the Ford Figo hatchback and the Figo Aspire compact sedan.
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    At the recent Auto Expo 2016, we got chatting with Anurag Mehrotra, executive director marketing, sales and service at Ford India during a roundtable session, where he again insisted on just how inexpensive it is to maintain a Ford Figo. Anurag’s claim – the Figo is much cheaper to maintain than the largest player in the segment, which is the Maruti Swift.

    Fair enough. In the past, Ford cars have earned themselves a reputation of being expensive to maintain – a reputation that got built because of the earlier Ford Ikon. But with the Fiesta, Figo and now the new Figo, Ford has been trying hard to clean up that reputation.

    There is the “Happy Pocket” service initiative it launched a couple of years ago, where you only had to pay Rs. 2,199 per service – and that included all consumables, such as engine oil and filters for a regular service.

    What it has been trying hard to prove is that its “child parts” strategy is working – where instead of replacing an entire assembly, only a component would need replacing. For instance, if the door is damaged – you need not replace the entire door, only the skin can be replaced or inner frame as the need may be.

    Still, a quick search online throws up plenty of complaints about Ford service experience – and that’s something Anurag and team say they are trying hard to fix. Dealers are being severely dealt with for shoddy service and training is being imparted on how to handle customers.

    Well, to take a look at whether what Anurag and the Ford team have been saying is really prevalent in the market, we decided to poke around a bit and compare for ourselves what the parts costs really are.
    Here’s a head to head comparison of the Ford Figo and the Maruti Swift maintenance costs. If you want to check out how they compare with each other on performance and features, then CLICK HERE.

    Both cars have 10,000 km or once a year service intervals. The initial service costs are roughly similar for both, but it’s as the cars age that the bigger replacements happen.

    First a look at regular consumables – stuff that you would constitute a major service. This would approximately be what you would change at 40,000 km or perhaps 80,000 km (don’t look at all the parts/consumables together).
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    If you look at the above chart, you will find that the Figo and Swift have very comparable parts replacement costs. The maintenance costs for both the petrol cars is roughly similar, while the diesel Figo is a little cheaper to maintain than the Maruti Swift diesel!

    Ford has done its own research and put up these signs at its service stations and dealerships. We can only assume that Competition 1 in the photos below is the Maruti Swift Dzire, while Competition 2 and Competition 3 are the Honda Amaze and Hyundai Xcent respectively.
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    CorsaVeloce – had a Figo. konarktyagi – has a Swift. Guys, what’s your take on the above pricing?
    Last edited by NikilSJ; 21-03-16, 02:52 PM.
    Drink coffee and drive!

  • #2
    If Ford cars are actually the most inexpensive to maintain, why is it that car buyers still have a perception that Fords are expensive?
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    Here’s what Anurag Mehrotra, executive director marketing, sales and service, Ford India, had to say on Ford’s parts strategy – the full transcript from his interaction with us:

    “One of the pillars of our brand transformation story is around breaking this myth that many people have around cost of ownership. Some people still believe that owning a Ford is expensive, but it is far from the truth to be honest. We have done a lot of things to address that perception.

    I will tell you of about five things that I can think of right now. The first one is in the area of affordability. Here, there are two things predominantly that we have done. One is the sub-assembly strategy. When we launched the Ford Figo in 2010, we had some 200 sub-assembly parts. We used to call it, for the lack of a better word, the ‘Child Parts Strategy’ at that time. When we got to 2015, when we launched the new Figo, we had 800 sub-assembly parts. That itself sends out a strong message on how the maintenance cost of Ford has come down. The more number of sub-assembly parts, the cheaper the cost of servicing.

    I think the second big thing that we have done from an engineering stand point has been around localization. When we launched the Figo in 2010, our localization was about 65 percent. When we launched the new Figo and Aspire, the localization at launch has been 80 percent. So the higher the localization the lower the level of price I can give parts to customers. So on affordability, we have a more aggressive sub assembly strategy and the second has been localization.

    Then we have attacked it on the accessibility front. So you can be affordable, but if people can’t access you, there is a problem right? So we have opened up the parts distribution. We probably are one of the few OEMs or at least one of the global OEMs who have opened up their parts. So today across the country, we have 60 percent of my car park covered. By the middle of the year 100 per cent of my car park will be covered.

    What does that mean? So all my customers can go and buy parts from outside of my dealer network. They can go to a retailer or they can go to a local garage owner and buy a part. If they don’t want to come to my dealership, doesn’t matter. Let them go to a local garage owner, get their car serviced – but please, please use genuine Ford parts! This is a strategic move by us to make our parts more accessible to our customers.

    I think the other thing we have done is that we have invested or over-indexed our expansion on service. Today we have 350 odd service stores. There’s a reason why we have over-indexed on service – we want service to become more accessible. Someone will travel 100 km to buy a car, but he doesn’t want to travel 100 km to get his car serviced right? Quite honestly, over the next two years, we will open a service store somewhere every 3 weeks to make sure service is more accessible to our customers.

    The third thing we have wrapped all this around is a very strong commitment to transparency – as a layman if I was to ask someone what his service cost would be when he sends his car for service, there is no way in hell he would know! Today, what we have done is on our website you can go, select your car, the year and the mileage, and it will tell you what your maximum bill is likely to be. It will also tell you what all jobs we will do on your car. You can print that out, take it to my dealer and my dealer will not charge you anything more than that! We believe that level of transparency is critical to win the trust of our customers. The next step is to put up our full parts price on the Internet so you can see the cost.

    I will ask you to think of a brand who you think has the lowest cost of maintenance in India. In all likelihood there is one OEM’s name that will pop up. I can promise you we will be at least 6 to 12 percent lower than that.

    The third leg of our strategy, which is something we are still doing some work on is the area of customer experience. It is ironic, if you look at the Nielsen report on most trusted brands, do you know how many automotive brands are there? None!

    So the next most expensive thing that you buy in your life after a house is a car – and you don’t trust the brand – that tells you something right? We are not doing something that you would expect. This is an opportunity to deliver an experience that would help build that trust.”
    Drink coffee and drive!

    Comment


    • #3
      Being a Ford user for last 10 years, I would agree to this. We have had a Ford Fiesta in our family since 2006 and I have a Ford Figo Diesel. I have always been surprised about the service costs coming much lesser than I expected. Especially since in the initial years, it was very high. We had just moved from a Maruti 800 to the Fiesta, and the service costs felt way too expensive. Now it has improved a lot, both in terms of service cost and the service experience. The customer lounge, the feedback call from Ford India to find out about the service experience and the transparency in service costs are welcome moves.
      However, there the body work for Ford is much more expensive as compared to other brands. Although , this is covered by insurance, if you are planning to pay for it from pocket, it turns out to be quite expensive.
      It would be great if you can also add the comparison of body parts and body shop labor charges also to this list.
      Last edited by Arjun; 04-03-16, 04:22 PM.
      I know a lot about cars, man. I can look at any car's headlights and tell you exactly which way it's coming.

      Comment


      • #4
        I did some digging around for more parts prices and found a comprehensive list of parts prices. This price list for the Ford Figo and Maruti Swift is for the parts alone and does not include labour and painting costs. For instance, a bonnet that is listed at Rs. 4080 - that price is for the unpainted bonnet alone. Add another Rs. 2500 for painting and you should get the actual cost. Similarly for the doors. Windshield glass will have to include labour charges and the cost of that silicone sealant gasket, so again add another Rs. 1,500 to Rs. 2000 to the cost of the windshields listed below. Arjun You are right about replacement panels being slightly more expensive, but then it's not that much more compared to the Swift.

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        Source for parts prices: CarDekho. This has been compiled from store parts data from various dealerships.
        Drink coffee and drive!

        Comment


        • #5
          I own a Ford Figo Titanium (D) - 2013 model and let me tell you that the claim of having child parts is a myth.

          In 2013 when the car hit a stray dog on the highway the bill came to a whopping INR 50,000.00. Yes. There were no child parts which were available for any of the vehicle parts needing a replacement. The service center were reluctant to even fix up the horn which had a bent clamp. The front 'Ford' logo costs a whopping INR 2,000.00.
          Same with the ABS. The service center guys at Lathangi ford broke the rear ABS sensor while servicing the car and it costed some INR 10,800.00 + 2months of running after them to get it replaced. There were no child part for that too.
          You take any useful part in a Ford Figo and you'd see that more often than not, there would not be any child part available.

          The even significant point to note here is that though, Ford is a volume seller, their after sales service is one of the most pathetic experiences. They have a significant number of service centers in major towns and cities, with equally disappointing service experience. Chennai ford guys will make sure that I need to take my car back to them every time after a service, inorder to fix up something which were not done right the first time.
          The Kairali Ford service center in Thiruvananthapuram did not even permit me to service the car there, since it was a free service. They simply asked me to take it back to Bangalore. This is not something which I experienced with any other brands of cars which I've owned or used in the family - I've used Fiat Premier(Padmini), Daewoo Matiz, Maruti(800\Alto\Zen\SX4), Hyundai Santro, Chevrolet, Mahindra (Thar\XUV 500. I found that Ford Service centers are as bad as Nissan\Renault\Skoda and come close to a Mahindra service quality.
          Stick to Maruti or Hyundai. They are 'relatively' better any day than Ford.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by prajeet.ps@gmail.com View Post
            I own a Ford Figo Titanium (D) - 2013 model and let me tell you that the claim of having child parts is a myth.

            In 2013 when the car hit a stray dog on the highway the bill came to a whopping INR 50,000.00. ... I found that Ford Service centers are as bad as Nissan\Renault\Skoda and come close to a Mahindra service quality.
            Stick to Maruti or Hyundai. They are 'relatively' better any day than Ford.
            Thanks for this feedback Prajeet. But, I'm just wondering - could this has been before Ford started its child part strategy? I think this started in 2014 - the Happy Pocket and Child Parts strategy thing. Have you recently got the Figo serviced? Did you give this feedback to Ford's customer care about Chennai Ford and Kairali Ford? This is the issue with many companies - the management has one plan, while the dealers work on another, and end up ruining any good intention that OEM management may have.
            Drink coffee and drive!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Roshun View Post
              Thanks for this feedback Prajeet. But, I'm just wondering - could this has been before Ford started its child part strategy? I think this started in 2014 - the Happy Pocket and Child Parts strategy thing. Have you recently got the Figo serviced? Did you give this feedback to Ford's customer care about Chennai Ford and Kairali Ford? This is the issue with many companies - the management has one plan, while the dealers work on another, and end up ruining any good intention that OEM management may have.
              Hi Roshun - I bought my car in Apr 2013 and the 'Child parts' strategy was very much in action, then. The Ford showrooms used the price charts against Swift along with child parts list etc to prove their point.
              I agree with your point on Dealer vs Manufacturer. I remember having spoken to a senior exec from Skoda at an airport (couple of years back) where he (in his expansive style) spoke about the initiatives taken to improve customer satisfaction. However my friend having owned a skoda felt '0' improvement until 2015 when he decided to sell the Laura for an Innova!! However, in the case of Ford, there is little improvement there. They take feedback from customer and then the dealer calls me to give verbal guarantee of resolving it...and there dies down the feedback. If customer feedback led to disciplinary actions against dealers, then Lathangi would have long lost their dealership. Readers can google to find out what all they've done to customers! They even recently shared my registered email ID (official) with some third party insurance providers who started spamming my mailbox asking for Insurance renewal.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by prajeet.ps@gmail.com View Post
                I own a Ford Figo Titanium (D) - 2013 model and let me tell you that the claim of having child parts is a myth.

                In 2013 when the car hit a stray dog on the highway the bill came to a whopping INR 50,000.00. Yes. There were no child parts which were available for any of the vehicle parts needing a replacement. The service center were reluctant to even fix up the horn which had a bent clamp. The front 'Ford' logo costs a whopping INR 2,000.00.
                Same with the ABS. The service center guys at Lathangi ford broke the rear ABS sensor while servicing the car and it costed some INR 10,800.00 + 2months of running after them to get it replaced. There were no child part for that too.
                You take any useful part in a Ford Figo and you'd see that more often than not, there would not be any child part available.

                The even significant point to note here is that though, Ford is a volume seller, their after sales service is one of the most pathetic experiences. They have a significant number of service centers in major towns and cities, with equally disappointing service experience. Chennai ford guys will make sure that I need to take my car back to them every time after a service, inorder to fix up something which were not done right the first time.
                The Kairali Ford service center in Thiruvananthapuram did not even permit me to service the car there, since it was a free service. They simply asked me to take it back to Bangalore. This is not something which I experienced with any other brands of cars which I've owned or used in the family - I've used Fiat Premier(Padmini), Daewoo Matiz, Maruti(800\Alto\Zen\SX4), Hyundai Santro, Chevrolet, Mahindra (Thar\XUV 500. I found that Ford Service centers are as bad as Nissan\Renault\Skoda and come close to a Mahindra service quality.
                Stick to Maruti or Hyundai. They are 'relatively' better any day than Ford.
                I have Ford Figo 2011 (5 Years old and done 1L 9 K kms ). I think this post is related to regular maintanace. For accidental repair If we go for Insurance the cost will be more even the quotation given from service center to insurance company they list even good parts. I think the same will happen in all brand service center's. If we talk about regular maintenance Ford will be reasonable and easy to maintain.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by shankarsuresh10@gmail.com View Post

                  I have Ford Figo 2011 (5 Years old and done 1L 9 K kms ). I think this post is related to regular maintanace. For accidental repair If we go for Insurance the cost will be more even the quotation given from service center to insurance company they list even good parts. I think the same will happen in all brand service center's. If we talk about regular maintenance Ford will be reasonable and easy to maintain.
                  Can you share what your last regular service bill for the Figo was like? It might help us analyse the costs. Is your car a diesel or petrol Figo?
                  @prajeet.ps@gmail.com you have a point. At the end of the day, service centres have to make money by providing as much additional 'service' as they can and hence many will try and sell you things or changes things that don't need changing - and that's what increases prices. In the process they end up ruining goodwill.
                  Drink coffee and drive!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Recently I have done 1L10K Service for my Figo TDCi @ Akash Ford Hosur. Bill amount ₹7015 including front two suspension ( 1214 + 1214 + 576 Labor ).





                    Attached Files
                    Last edited by Arjun; 04-04-16, 03:12 PM. Reason: Rotated attached image and put it in full size

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                    • #11
                      Ford has launched a service cost calculator. Here's the link: https://www.fordservicepricepromise....105328_fordind Ford says the calcualtor will let you know how much your car's serivce is going to cost before entering the service centre. It says you just need to take a print of the calculated quote and show it to the dealership and the price you pay is the price you see. Have to check out how far this claim is true. Geo recently bought a Ford Figo diesel, will check out how far this claim is true while taking his car for the regular service.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Roshun

                        Firstly I would like to thank you for your guidance on Figo. I was all set to buy Figo titanium diesel, but one of friend is suggesting to go with vitara Brezza which roughly 60 k more than the Figo. Please suggest which one better buy

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                        • #13
                          Roshun Firstly I would like to thank you for your guidance on Figo. I was all set to buy Figo Titanium diesel, but one of a friend is suggesting to go with Suzuki Vitara Brezza which roughly Rs 60 k more than the Ford Figo. Please suggest which one better buy?

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                          • #14
                            Anoop_4 Which variants of the cars are you comparing. The price difference between the Figo Titanium(not plus) and the Brezza ZDi(not plus) is 2 lakhs. Its even higher when you compare the Titanium + with the Zdi +. The price difference of 60k you mentioned is between Figo Titanium and the Vitara LDi, which is the base variant of the Brezza. In terms of engine, the Figo is more powerful and has minimal turbo lag. The Brezza , with the VGT is known for turbo lags and that affects its driveability in traffic. However the noise levels are lower on the Brezza. The Figo is also more fuel efficient according to ARAI tests, but in real world conditions the difference in fuel efficiency won't be much. In terms of handling the Figo is better, and is more steady in high speeds. The Figo also has a smaller turning radius which is useful while parking and while taking U turns. In terms of space, the Brezza is bigger and little wider but the rear leg room isn't much better in the Brezza as compared to the Figo. The Brezza has a much bigger boot which is quite useful. The Brezza looks better, has higher ground clearance , and more space. The ground clearance however is quite good for a Figo also considering its a hatchback. In terms of features there is no comparison at all. Figo is much ahead. It has 2 airbags (1 in Brezza LDi), ABS,EBD, automatic climate control, driver seat height adjustment, front and rear power windows(compared to front only in Brezza), and a warranty of 1lakh kms/2 years over 40000kms/2 years of Maruti. The warranty can be considered same as mostly there would not be so much running in 2 years. However comparing other things, the Figo Titanium is a much better deal. For the price of the Brezza LDi you can even go for a Titanium Plus variant of the Figo and get a better ICE, and 6 airbags. Otherwise even going for a Ford Aspire Titanium, will solve the bolt space issue and still save you 10k over the Vitara Brezza. The higher variants in the Brezza do narrow the gap in terms of features, but they would cost more than a lakh more than the Figo options. The Brezza also has longer wait times. Unless you are specifically looking for a compact SUV, the Figo/Aspire are much better deals over the Brezza LDi.
                            I know a lot about cars, man. I can look at any car's headlights and tell you exactly which way it's coming.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Anoop_4
                              I can see your dilemma here. As Arjun has already pointed out, the top-end Ford Figo Titanium is cheaper than the base variant Maruti Vitara Brezza LDi. He has a point when he says you can go for the Titanium Plus and get Ford's SYNC infotainment system and six airbags. Or you could consider the Ford Figo Aspire Titanium diesel and get more boot space.
                              In terms of engine power, the Figo is much better. However, if you look at interior space the Brezza will have a bit more to offer. Fuel efficiency, both would be similar in the city at about 15-16 kmpl. Maintenance costs - the jury is still out on this one. While Figo is theoretically lower for regular service and spares, owners have reported otherwise for replacement parts. (See above)
                              Drink coffee and drive!

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