Old wine in a new bottle: Why was Auto Expo 2014 'not exciting'?
New Delhi: Auto Expo 2014, Delhi-NCR brought auto majors round the globe under one roof. Automakers from East to West showcased, if not unveiled, their babies. From Honda and Hyundai to Ford and Renault, all exhibited their autos.
Auto Expo is expected to deliver innovation with style. However, if one looks closely enough, it is easy to sense that the flavour was missing in the expo. Those who attended Auto Expo 2014 must have realised, the Greater Noida Expo Mart’s air was rather heavy than fresh.
Corroborating the allegation, remember Chevrolet unveiling its ‘All New Beat’. The facelift had nothing new actually than an enhanced bumper and an altered back. Same goes with other major brands. The most stunning aspect of the show was that even the launched vehicles are not to roll out in the market before second quarter of calander year 2014.
Even giants’ – Audi, BMW, Mercedes and Mini – pavilions had a small package to offer. It were bikes that stole the show, given that the on-going revolution in the segment. Thus, the technological and facial insurrection in bikes, e.g. Vardenchi and UM-Renegade, shall not be overjoyed.
This gives rise to a question, which shall be delved seriously, that what is holding carmakers back from introducing freshness on Indian soil. While we rummaged through all marquees, there was little excitement to be seen. It was, in a nut shell, old wine in a new bottle served.
While we tried to understand the reason behind the missing spice, it was talk of the town that all auto majors were looking ahead to Indian Lok Sabha elections 2014. The intolerable patience of the car makers was reflective of the current political instability prevailing in the country.
There were some hush-hush talks amongst the seniors of various brands that they see some political party rising, which will re-define Indian economy and pull the state out of the stagflation it is grappling with lately.
Are thus hovering clouds of fear over auto industry, which is sceptical of launching new technology or design in an economy suffering inflation and depreciation? The industry is anticipating a messiah who will save the sinking Indian market by providing political and economic strength.
With current inflation and high interest rates, majority of auto majors are treading cautiously in Indian market. In fact, global auto market has been facing slumping sales. Fearing if the auto sector will tank along with real estate in India, makers fear bringing freshness into a market, which is on the verge of collapse.
However, there is a silver lining in the dark clouds. A change in incumbency is popularly seen to bring revival in Indian economy. The market is awaiting the brilliant good news of a firm Indian government post general elections 2014.
Probably, had Auto Expo 2014, Delhi-NCR, India, been held post 2014 elections, the show would have been manifold magnificent and splendid than what actually happened.