Maruti vs. Tata Cars
Maruti cars are leading the market for the special impact they leave on the car owners. All the Maruti car owners experience minimum problems when compared to other car owners. Another key factor pushing Maruti cars to a height is the low-cost of maintenance and easy availability of service stations. Low maintenance cost and high number of service stations are the USPs of Maruti Cars.
Tata cars are produced with unique design and style. These cars have a performance that is par excellence but yet fail to compete with the low maintenance costs of Maruti cars.
Also, the Maruti cars have topped the list of J.D. Power survey on customer satisfaction for about eight consecutive years. J.D. Power is a global market research firm that ranks different car models based on their services, maintenance costs, running costs, performance and customer response. Whereas, the Tata Motors occupied the last position in the customer satisfaction Index ranking (2007).
Diesel and Petrol Variants
The rise of maintenance costs in petrol cars falls somewhere in the range of Rs 12, 000 per annum in the third year. The costs take a high jump from Rs 6,000. Further to that the cost does not come down but every year there is a slight increase in the maintenance costs because the process of repairs and replacement continues.
On the other hand, the average maintenance costs of the diesel cars
jump from Rs 10,000 to Rs 19,000 in the third year.
The running costs of Maruti cars are much lower than Tata cars. The running costs of Tata cars shoot up after running a distance of around 40,000 km due to replacement of spare parts and other essential repairs including the brake pads, brake discs and the tyres. On the other hand, the running costs of Maruti cars do not witness any inflection point even after travelling a distance of 40,000 km. Maruti cars are capable of running a distance of around 90,000 km without any repair and maintenance.
According to the rankings of J.D. Power, in the past few years, Tata has come up with improvements in terms of better performance but still the overall satisfaction level of Maruti cars is higher as compared to Tata.
All the car models require maintenance after three to five years of survival on Indian roads. At normal conditions, the maintenance costs of Maruti cars increases over a period of five years. Luxury cars produced by Maruti need more maintenance as compared to small and compact cars because these are loaded with expensive accessories that need proper care. The maintenance costs of the car go up to around Rs 1,000 per month or Rs 12, 000 after running successfully for five years.
On the other hand, Tata cars require maintenance after running successfully for three years. The costs outgo Rs 8,500 per annum in the second year, Rs 12,000 in the third year and around Rs 20,000 in the fourth year. This way the percentage of maintenance costs keep on increasing after every year.
Even J.D. Power survey has ranked Maruti Suzuki in 2007 for the overall customers satisfaction. According to the research, Maruti customers are highly satisfied with the service they get for about 12 to 18 months of car delivery. Overall satisfaction of the customers was measured on the basis of problems experienced, service advisor, service delivery, service quality, user-friendly service and in-service experience.
In another survey held by J.D. Power Asia in the year 2008, Maruti car models rank highest in two segments (Premium compact and Entry midsized) in vehicle dependability study. Maruti Suzuki Swifts receives the 1st rank under Premium Compact Cars and Maruti Esteem 1st rank in Entry Midsize.
The Tata cars do not lead any segment. Only two Tata cars were ranked in the survey. The Tata Indio Marino received 4th position for entry mid-size segment and Tata Safari 2nd for SUV in the Vehicle dependability study by J.D Power Asia Pacific. Largely the dependability is ranked on the basis of number of problems reported per 100 vehicles and Maruti being ranked the highest obviously has a lower rate of problem incidence as compared to Tata.
Overall, the Maruti cars score high in terms of low maintenance cost whereas Tata cars do not differ much with Maruti cars with respect to the maintenance or spare part costs. But the frequency of changing the spare parts in Tata cars is more as compared to Maruti cars.