We Indians know a good bargain when we see one. We saw one such good deal on EcoSport and now Ford is left wondering if they underestimated their own product or did they misread the purchasing power of Indians.
Ford order books have run out of pages booking the EcoSport. The kneejerk reaction of the company to this overenthusiastic demand was to hike the asking price of the vehicle. They did that. In fact, they tweaked it upwards twice within 7 months since the launch of the vehicle but even that doesn’t seem to have much of an effect on the customers’ craving for the car.
A recent report published in the Business-Standard says that one out of every 5 EcoSport produced at Ford India goes out of the country for sale. Some 45,727 total units were produced till December last, out of which 9,647 units were exported. The scoreboard at the current time says that Ford runs an order backlog of over 30,000 units. Going by the present run rate, oops, production rate, it is estimated that it would take somewhere from 7 to 8 months to clear up the backlog and resume new bookings.
The next question is – Is Ford Justified in Exporting EcoSport Keeping the Customers who have booked their car in India waiting?
Off coarse, by business logic, there is nothing wrong at all. However, doesn’t this reflect Ford’s greed and a possible hint at taking the Indian customers for granted.
At the Media drive of EcoSport in Goa, Ford teased other companies and said that they were not like one of those manufacturers who ‘extort’ money from its customers and keep them waiting till eternity.
Now what are you doing Ford?
Even if we take your reason of unexpected response, what’s with your continuous love towards exports (obviously which brings you better money). If these exported EcoSports would have been delivered here in India, we would have around 10,000 lesser unsatisfied customers.
And now comes the biggest mess- NO PRICE PROTECTION!
So, for these ~10,000 EcoSports that could have found a customer in India, have you offered any kind of Price Protection or will they have to doll out the increased money? You known the answer!
Would curtailing the export completely be an option? Provisionally perhaps. In the long run it would only mean that some 10,000 odd domestic customers will be happier at the cost of similar number of disgruntled buyers elsewhere.
All they need to do is show some courtesy and consideration towards its customers in India. No, do not stop your exports, increase your car prices at will (and let the customer decide if they want to go for your car), but PROVIDE PRICE PROTECTION!
Let the customer who has booked your car 6 months ago, get it at that price itself because he is ready to pay you full and it is your incompetency which causes the delay then why should he suffer?
It may cost you some amount but it will bring in the much needed ‘respect’. Your competitors have done that Ford and EcoSport will not be the only car you will sell in India!
The only rectification that you have done so far is slash that unreasonable cancellation charge that should not have been at the first place!
If you are reading this, do not let your most impressive car create a wrong image among customers that may haunt you in the future. Think about this Ford, really!
We leave you with a Stinker of Ford’s Mess!