Category: Automobiles

VADODARA/NEW DELHI: UM Motorcycles has opened its eleventh dealership in India – UM Vadodara in Vadodara, Gujarat. Spread over an area of approx. 2100 sq ft, the dealership facility has a showroom integrated with an after-sales service facility to ensure that the customers receive pre-and post-sales ownership experience.
Rajeev Mishra, Director UML, said, “The Vadodara dealership represents UM Motorcycles’ second dealership in the state of Gujarat, with the first being in Surat. It underlines the importance, UM Motorcycle accords to the market of Gujarat. The state has emerged as a very strong market in the Western region for cruiser bikes and the opening of this showroom is a testimony to this fact.”
Mishra further added, “We are confident that this state of art showroom will be able to fulfill the aspirations and needs of our customers with our amazing products and fabulous services. This dealership will house our flagship products like Renegade Commando and Renegade Sports S). The prospective customers of UM Motorcycles in Vadodara will be able to discover our products up close and personal at this new dealership.”
“We welcome UM Motorcycles here in Vadodara, the cultural capital of Gujarat. In this world class facility, the entire range of UM Motorcycles along with UM merchandise will be available for sale. It is our commitment to provide unprecedented sales and service experience to all the customers of UM Motorcycles,” said Mayank Jain Proprietor Viraansh Automobiles.
“Through this new dealership, we will try to meet the demands of the rapidly growing UM Motorcycles enthusiasts in Vadodara. I consider it a privilege to represent UM Motorcycles in Vadodara,” added Jain.

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Gridlocked situation But there’s a way out. K MURALI KUMARGridlock in India’s cities has reached dangerous proportions. The average speed of traffic going through the city center in Bengaluru during peak hours was recently clocked at just 10 km per hour. Commute speeds in Mumbai and Delhi are often worse.
In the big Indian cities, two solutions — metro rail and taxis — are beginning to offer relief. As more people squeeze into metros, road traffic density under metro-elevated structures and on surrounding feeder roads appears to have fallen.
This makes sense. Many metro riders own private vehicles that are now on the roads, decongesting traffic along their entire route.
The problem is that not everyone in the big cities can travel by Metro. The sprawl in India’s cities is so vast that even when all future lines of current metro projects are operational, the majority of a city’s residents will be more than a mile from the nearest metro station. This last mile problem — of how to get to and from a metro station at both ends — is a serious one.
How it works out
Which brings us to cars. Automobiles remain the best solution for all-weather end-to-end transportation but they are getting increasingly more expensive both to buy and maintain.
City driving is no longer pleasurable and driver anxiety is on the rise. Hiring chauffeurs is not a cost-effective option either. Families that hire drivers chafe at under-utilised chauffeurs and sometimes make unnecessary trips causing additional gridlock and burning needless fuel.
The answer may well be for consumers to not use private cars but rely extensively on taxi services, again like in the world’s big cities. A simple cost-benefit exercise can help make such a case.
To test this hypothesis out, I took ten Uber trips in Bengaluru over a two-week period, at different times during the day. Some were individual rides, others were pooled.
My average cost was 12.25 ₹/km. For simplicity, I disregarded the only other cost — internet fees to book and pay for travel.
Now, consider the case of two families both of which commute 2,000 km a month. One family owns two cars and employs a driver for each car; the other family exclusively uses taxis.
Assume the initial costs of the cars to be ₹6 lakh each and that both cars will be sold after 7 years, at zero residual value. Also, rather than calculate finance costs, let us compute the opportunity cost assuming that the family pays cash for both vehicles.
At 7 per cent interest per annum, a ₹12-lakh FD would yield ₹84,000 in interest, an opportunity cost of ₹7,000 per month. At an average operational cost of ₹8/km — fuel, maintenance, taxes and insurance — the 2,000 km of driving each month would cost the family ₹16,000. Factor in the two additional full-time drivers (₹24,000 a month) and the car-owning family will spend ₹47,000 in monthly transportation costs.
The taxi option
For the family that uses taxis, the monthly outlay would be just ₹24,500, a saving of 48 per cent over the car family.
Plus, it never needs to pay for parking. Improvements in app functionality and the deployment of thousands of taxis mean that cabs these days arrive at their pickup point often faster than the time it takes for a parked car to be driven out into the street.
Even if the car family doesn’t hire drivers, throwing the comparison off because taxis come with drivers, the car family spends ₹23,000 a month, only slightly less than the taxi family.
If Indians in the big cities slowly begin to think in this manner, they could begin to buy fewer new cars in the future. Families will continue to have their existing cars parked in garages but will start severely limiting their use, perhaps to pleasurable, long-distance drives or emergencies only.
This, in turn, would have serious consequences for India’s manufacturing and service economy. True, taxi companies will continue to encourage their drivers to buy new cars but this volume pales in comparison to domestic retail buying.
AP reported in early September that John Zimmer, co-founder of the ride-sharing company Lyft wrote in an essay that “personal car ownership in the US will come to an end because autonomous rides (self-driving Lyft cars) will become a cheaper way to travel than owning an automobile”.
With India’s vast labour pool and complex traffic patterns, self-driving cars are unlikely to make an entry on Indian roads anytime soon. But Zimmer’s prediction that personal car ownership will fall may turn out to be true in India as well.

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Aurangabad: A research scholar Pierpaolo Carlone from Salerno University, Italy inaugurated a one-day workshop organized by Maharashtra Institute of Technology (MIT)
He shared his insights on different developments in the field of polymer composite materials. Adding to the importance of this product, he said that Polymer composite materials were enabling automobile industry to beat the competition with pricing.
While addressing the students, Carlone said that the current research in polymer composite materials may double the efficiency of automobiles.
He said, “Polymer composite material is the latest development in the field of material science. The polymer is used in automobile industries due to its properties like light weight with high strength but low cost at the same time. The excellent combination of desired properties has made polymer one of the most effective raw materials.”
Teenager writes fiction on farmer suicide
A class X student, Ganesh Aithal, has penned down a fiction book, ‘The Drought Within’ on farmer suicide giving a positive message that such unfortunate incidents can be avoided if farmers avail different welfare schemes of the center and the state.
The book describes few positive minded people who can ensure the prosperity of farmers with determined action taken towards different government schemes. The book was published a few days back and it is available for online sale.
Maharashtra Education Minister, Vinod Tawde has also appreciated the book. Ganesh said, “The issue of farmer suicide has stirred me from within and compelled me to write a book.”
He said, “It said it is depressing to hear about such incidents. In an attempt to put myself in the shoes of the people living in adverse condition, I wrote this book. Though the characters are fictional, I have tried imagining them in real life situations. I have noticed an equal number of people trying to solve the situation through honest social work.”

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Domestic sales of automobiles were on the growth path last month (October) with most of the major players in different segments logging growth over the corresponding month of the previous year and experts confident the trend is expected to continue.
However the lower exports dragged down the overall sales of major players in the passenger car segment.
“Passenger cars and two wheelers sales continue to grow. This is backed by positive customer sentiments and better in hand cash flows to support their discretionary spends. Overall we should see good growth this year in all the vehicle categories,” said Abdul Majeed, Partner- Price Waterhouse and an auto expert.
According to him, medium and heavy commercial vehicles will bounce back once demand for freight movement picks up.
India’s largest passenger car maker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd said it closed last month selling 133,793 units (domestic 123,764 units, exports 10,029 units) last month as against 134,209 units (domestic 121,063 units, exports 13,146 units) sold during October 2015.
The company saw sales decline in its mini (Alto, WagonR), compact (Swift, Ritz, Celerio, Baleno, Dzire) super compact (Dzire Tour) and van (Omni, Eeco) segments, but on the other hand, sales of its utility vehicles (Gypsy, Ertiga, S-Cross, Vitara, Brezza) zoomed to 18,008 units last month, up from 9,435 units sold in October 2015.
Similarly Hyundai Motor India Ltd said it sold 64,372 units (domestic 50,016 units, exports 14,356 units) in October, up from 61,701 units (domestic 47,105 units, exports 14,686 units) sold during October 2015.
“Hyundai with a highest-ever domestic volume of 50,016 units registered record cumulative sales of 64,372 units in October 2016.
“Hyundai achieved the highest and fastest domestic sales of 50,000 units mark within 15 months from the earlier milestone of 40,000 units,” MD and CEO Y.K.Koo was quoted as saying in the statement.
Nissan Motor India reported domestic sales of 6,108 vehicles versus 3,246 units sold in October 2015.
On its part, Tata Motors Ltd said it sold 16,311 passenger vehicles up from 12,747 units sold during October 2015.
Tata Motors closed last month with a total sales of 52,813 units as against 43,486 units sold during the corresponding period of the previous year.
Smaller player in the Indian car market Volkswagen Passenger Cars India sold 5,534 units last month as compared to 3,255 units in the corresponding month the previous year.
In the two-wheeler segment, high capacity motorbike maker Eicher Motors Ltd increased its sales volumes by 33 per cent to 59,127 units as compared to 44,522 units sold during October 2015.
Bulk of the sales for Eicher Motors came from two-wheelers with engine capacity up to 350 cc (55,188 units) while vehicles with more than 350cc engine capacity accounted for 3,939 units sold last month.
Commercial vehicles major Ashok Leyland sold 12,533 units, up from 9,803 units sold in October 2015.
The other major commercial vehicles player Tata Motors logged 15 per cent growth selling 30,169 units last month.

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ServicemykarCar purchase and servicing platform BookMyTime has acqui-hired car management startup Servicemykar, according to a press statement.
Servicemykar was founded by Raghavendra Chandrappa. The 10-member team of Servicemykar, as well as CEO Chandrappa, will become a part of BookMyTime.
“With this acquisition, we are ready to expand our operation in terms of service and geography,” said Raghuram Kote, founder of BookMyTime.
The BookMyTime app provides the user with price comparisons of cars, as well as servicing requirements such as providing details of puncture shops and round the clock towing services.
The company, which is currently present in Bangalore, claims to have partnered with more than 182 authorized dealers for servicing as well as 110 dealers for new cars.
In the automobiles space, online classifieds firm Quikr has acquired Step, a platform that connects vehicle owners with service providers nearest to them in September.
Prior to that, Girnar Software Pvt Ltd, which owns CarDekho.com, Gaadi.com, and Zigwheels.com, has acquired roadside assistance (RSA) provider Help On Wheels Pvt Ltd in an all-cash deal in April.
The automobile marketplace and repair segment has seen a lot of investor interest recently. In September, Deepak Nathani, co-founder of technology consulting firm Cybage Software Pvt. Ltd acquired a 20% stake in automotive services startup Demyto for an undisclosed amount.
In May, Bengaluru-based Let’s Service raised angel funding from QuEST Global chief operating officer Ajay Prabhu and Julia Computing Inc. co-founder Deepak Vinchhi. The firm provides servicing for a bike- and scooter-owners at authorized service centers.
The same month also saw Mumbai-based MotoMojo secure angel funding from the founders of startup enabler VentesAvenues. The firm connects owners of two- and four-wheelers with service stations through its mobile app.

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NEW DELHI: The country’s top two carmakers Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai said they sold over 45,000 units on Dhanteras.
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd and Hyundai Motor India Ltd (HMIL) reported good sales on Dhanteras, considered auspicious for making new purchases.
“This Dhanteras, the customers have done heightened purchases with deliveries of 15,153 Hyundai cars, a growth of 26 percent over last year,” HMIL Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing Rakesh Srivastava told PTI.
He further said: “We expect to have 50,000-plus deliveries for the full month, making this festival season as the best in the last couple of years.”
Good monsoons, better consumer sentiments, and 7th Pay Commission award have fuelled demand for automobiles.
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NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 2:
While two-wheeler makers saw some growth in sales during the month of October, many car makers did not report a blockbuster performance.

In the two-wheeler segment, Hero MotoCorp continued selling six-lakh-plus units consecutively for the last three months and recorded sales of 6.63 lakh units in October, up four per cent against 6.40 lakh units in the corresponding month last year.

‘Pulsar’-maker Bajaj Auto sold 2.13 lakh motorcycles during the month, a five per cent growth year-on-year as compared to 2.02 lakh units in October 2015.

Tamil Nadu-based TVS Motor recorded double-digit growth by selling around 3.09 lakh units (12 per cent up a year -on-year) in October compared with around 2.75 lakh units in October last year. India Yamaha Motor also recorded 22 per cent growth at 86,428 units during the month, as against 70,812 units in October last year.

Passenger vehicle
In the passenger vehicle segment, while companies such as Renault India, Volkswagen India and Nissan India reported exponential growth (because of the low base), companies such as Ford India, Toyota Kirloskar Motor and Honda Cars India reported the decline in sales year-on-year. Renault India sold 12,409 units during the month, up 68 per cent, as against 7,396 units in October 2015. However, Ford India and Honda Cars India reported more than 20 per cent decline in sales year-on-year. “As we look for the industry momentum to sustain, Ford remains committed to its strategy of product led innovation, a differentiated customer experience, and breaking the myth on our cost of ownership,” Anurag Mehrotra, Executive Director, Marketing, Sales & Service, Ford India, said.

M&M sales
However, home-grown Mahindra & Mahindra’s sales jumped three per cent to 24,737 units last month compared to 24,060 units in October last year. “Some of our power brands such as the Bolero, Scorpio, TUV300 and the Pickups have performed well. We have expanded our electric vehicle portfolio (zero emissions) over the last one month by adding the eSupro range and the e2oPlus. We hope to see the growth momentum continue for the remaining part of the year,” Pravin Shah, President and Chief Executive (Automotive), M&M, said. The commercial vehicle segment also showed mixed trend during the month.

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BookMyTimeCar purchase and servicing platform, BookMyTime, has acquired car management startup Service year. “With this acquisition, we are ready to expand our operations in terms of service and geography”, said Raghuram Kote, founder of BookMyTime. The BookMyTime app provides users with price comparisons of cars, as well as servicing requirements such as providing details of puncture shops and round the clock towing services. The company, which is currently present in Bangalore, claims to have partnered with more than 182 authorized dealers for servicing and 110 dealers for new cars.

In the automobiles sector, online classifieds firm, Quikr has acquired Step, a platform that connects vehicle owners with service providers nearest to them during September this year. Prior to that, Girnar Software Pvt Ltd, which owns CarDekho.com, Gaadi.com and Zigwheels.com, had acquired roadside assistance (RSA) provider, Help On Wheels Pvt Ltd in an all – cash deal in April, this year. The automobile marketplace and repair segment has seen a lot of investor interest recently. Read more on Investments

The growth of the IT and other industries in India has greatly improved the standard of living of Indian citizens. Many people have now purchased cars or bikes (which have led to huge traffic snarls in all the cities in India) and are able to commute with ease. With greater number of cars, comes a greater need to service them. BookMyTime app has made life easy for people by allowing them to do price comparison of cars before purchasing, thereby ensuring purchase of cheap and efficient cars. It is also easy for people now to find a good car servicing agent to repair and clean their car on regular intervals. Maintenance of cars is essential to optimize their performance and also to make them appear clean and neat. People stuck on roads due to car – punctures or engine breakdowns can also avail help easily by means of BookMyTime’s mobile app. This startup is definitely a useful startup and a visionary one. The government of India should promote more startups like these. Read more on Startup News

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Ontario,Nov1: BlackBerry Ltd has signed a deal to work directly with Ford Motor Co to expand the carmaker’s use of its QNX secure operating system, the Canadian technology company said on Monday, as Ford develops increasingly automated vehicles.
The deal with Ford is the first BlackBerry has done directly with a major automaker, though it currently sells its technology to auto industry suppliers.
The company is betting its future on expanding sales of software products, including to automakers and other manufacturers, after largely ceding the smartphone market to rivals including Apple, Alphabet’s Google and Samsung.
Panasonic Automotive currently uses QNX software in the Sync 3 infotainment console that it supplies to Ford.
BlackBerry is hoping the new deal will expand the use of BlackBerry’s software in Ford vehicles as the two companies identify other systems where it might be used.
“We can form the basis of the entire vehicle all the way from the autonomous drive through to infotainment,” John Wall, the head of BlackBerry’s QNX unit, said in a phone interview.
Ford is ramping up its driverless vehicle efforts and plans to offer a fully automated vehicle for commercial ride-sharing in 2021, it announced in August.
QNX’s software is certified for use in autonomous driving and active safety systems, according to Wall.
“In the initial engagements you can think of an expansion into the cockpit; telematics, infotainment, cluster,” Wall said.
BlackBerry and Ford declined to say how QNX might be rolled out into new systems or discuss financial terms of the deal.
A dedicated team of QNX engineers based in Ottawa and Waterloo will work with Ford to expand the carmaker’s use of the Neutrino industrial operating system, as well as an overarching program that can control other operating systems and related security technology, BlackBerry said. “We’re providing the plumbing for the vehicle that is both robust and safe and secure to allow the customers to build their applications on top of that,” Wall said.
Dan Dodge, who founded QNX in 1982, and stayed on after BlackBerry bought the company in 2010, left QNX at the end of 2015. Bloomberg reported in July that Apple hired him as part of its own self-driving plans.

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ALLAHABAD: The auspicious occasion of Dhanteras registered brisk sale in bullion and automobile sectors, with the sale of 1,675 automobiles, including 650 four-wheelers on a single day. In the bullion sector, the enthusiasm of people was up due to low gold prices and lucrative offers.
The showrooms lined up vehicles from an entrance to a footpath, akin to that of utensils as the shops opened on Saturday.
“We had no option as customers had booked their two-wheelers in advance to pick it on Dhanteras all our godowns were full so the vehicles had to be parked on roads,” claimed manager of a showroom.
He said that 45 motorcycles and 40 scooters were sold till late in the evening. Data collected from various showrooms shows that 1,675 vehicles will be on roads from Sunday. In the bullion market, silver coins and idols were purchased most followed by golden and diamond jewellery. The precious stone studded jewellery was also in demand.
“The silver bullion market is expected to register a sale between Rs 30 crore and Rs 40 crores till late at night which is below expectations,” Prayag Sarafa Mandal president Kuldeep Soni said.
He said people purchased silver Laxmi-Ganesh coins or silver products as the token purchase for Dhanteras. Gold was also sold in good quantity but it was the silver which was the common man’s first choice. “People also purchased certified jewellery from showrooms. Traditional jewellers have to sustain the loss this Diwali,” Soni added.

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