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Old 07-07-2015, 03:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by ThePrudentNinja View Post
As for selling a new car for $5K and making a profit, I bet it can be done, but only by a major auto maker.
Is being done. But won't pass US safety or emissiosn requirements. And buyers certainly won't be flocking to them.


The one (non-Nano*) car I know of that goes for under $5k in its home market is the Maruti Alto. Which is this:

(yeah, that was about as uncomfortable as it looks!)

Great little thing. 70 mpg on the highway. Around 30 mpg in crawling Asian traffic, with the AC on.

Add required safety equipment for the US market, however, and it'll probably be at least $2-$3k more expensive. At which point, a Mirage or a Versa is a much better deal... as they have much more legroom, elbow room and storage space.

And these things are tiny. I can reach both side mirrors at the same time, and I'm all of five-and-a-half feet tall. Highway stability is basically nil, and there's no crash safety to speak of.

If you want the cheapest normal sized cars you can buy, you've already got $10k Versas... which is, really, a pretty sweet deal... frankly, I wish they were that cheap over here, as well.


*The Nano is an excellent case in why cheap doesn't necessarily make sense. That was a car that cost under $3k when it was launched, and it sold horribly... simply because even Indian buyers have standards below which they will refuse to go. American standards, on the other hand, are quite a bit higher... and selling them anything below the Fiesta size range is still an iffy proposition.

**I once met a distributor who brought in a no-BS $4k car (after taxes)... which only cost around $2-$3k in its home country. Here, where an Alto costs about $8k, that's an amazing price. BUT: it doesn't sell. He's still pitching it around, but has few buyers. Could be something to do with the fact that it's just got three wheels and a motorcycle engine... but the sad reality is... you're never going to convince people to buy cheap crap that's too small when they have the choice of buying cheap crap that's simply old.

Last edited by niky; 07-07-2015 at 03:37 AM..
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