It is widely seen, to stay in the game carmakers across the globe tend to update their vehicles every year or once in a couple of years. With each update, a particular car may or may not undergo a complete overhaul. By and large, the new updated vehicles are said to be better than the previous models. But in transition, at times the cars lose their charm, and may not appeal to the buyers. Well, updates are not always lucky for the carmaker, you know. So, we count seven cars in the Indian market that became a dud after a facelift.
Starting the list, we have the compact SUV that wrote the success story of Renault in India, Duster. Beginning the journey, Renault’s first successful vehicle to hit the market in India is the Renault Duster. It was practical, affordable and also powerful. For about 2-3 years, no one could match what Duster used to offer.
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Also, with time, the company introduced an AWD trim of this SUV, which took the ball game a notch above. But then, the compact SUV market saw a boom. So did the Duster with a facelift. But this facelift was too little too late. Hence, the facelift didn’t go as planned, and the facelift couldn’t achieve what the first model achieved.
The vehicle that kick-started the subcompact SUV segment is the Ford Ecosport. At the time of its launch, no other carmaker in India (apart from Premier Rio) offered a subcompact SUV in India. Waah! Ford did play well back then. Ford Ecosport was known for a powerful engine, sporty dynamics and a comfortable cabin, in short, the Urban SUV.
But with time, Ford did update the Ecosport, but it was too little too late again. It was already too late by the time Ford was completely updated with all the gadgets and gizmos of this era. Hence the customers started preferring its competition over the Ford Ecosport. But this doesn’t signify that it lacked somewhere instead, it was one of the values for money and the most powerful SUV in its segment.
Volkswagen Polo Cross
There was a time when the carmaker beefed up their hatchbacks to cater for the so-called crossover (SUVish) market. Enters the Volkswagen Polo Cross. To be honest, this was done after Fiat announced the Aventura in the Indian market. But keeping that aside, Volkswagen updated the Polo with plastic cladding all around including the wheel arches.
Where it did make an impact on beefing up the vehicle, not many bought the Volkswagen Polo Cross. It was a mere update than a facelift. Meaning, on the inside and under the hood the situation was similar to that of the conventional Polo.
Toyota Etios Cross
Another vehicle to follow the hatchback to crossover transformation was the Toyota Etios Cross. Again, the basic interior and mechanics remained unchanged, only the Aesthetics were updated with the Etios Cross.
Like the other pseudo crossovers, this too was given plastic cladding on all sides with a faux skid plate in front and at the back. Nevertheless, the complete segment of such cars was a dud.
Moving on, to one of the legendary cars that was a part of the Indian market, the Honda Civic. Civic, as soon as we hear the name, it’s evident that we start imagining a car with low ground clearance, an aggressive nose and that futuristic and beautiful dashboard. Well, Honda Civic was one of our childhood dreams.
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Alas after some years, 6 to be exact, Honda pulled the plug over the first Civic sold in India. Later in 2019 Honda did bring back the legend with a generation change. But without further Honda could have done, it became a dud. The reason? Click here to know more.
Like the Civic, Honda Accord was also among the first luxury cars to hit the Indian market in the 2000s. It did well, as it offered some first in class luxury features and also cost a little less compared to its rivals. We too have Honda Accord on our list of nostalgic cars. One of the reasons Honda Accord is famous is not only because of its sheer size but also its powertrain.
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The first-gen did come with a naturally aspirated 3.2 V6 engine along with a 2.4-litre i-VTEC inline 4. And Oh Boy! the V6 was darn powerful. Fastwording to 2016, Honda brought back the Accord but with a hybrid powertrain. Also, it was a CBU unit, meaning it was way expensive considering its rivals. Hence, this generation of Honda Accord failed before the company could make a second move.
The car that was a part of the Indian automotive market when it was new and also help shape it is the Hyundai Santro. After the mainstream cars like the Maruti 800 and Alto, it was Santo that was a bit unique. Also, this was among the first cars in India from the Korean carmaker Hyundai.
In order to stay competitive, Hyundai kept on updating the Santro with multiple updates. That too, most of the Santros did well in the market unless the one that was launched in 2018. This is when Hyundai launched the second-gen Santro. This vehicle is in no terms inferior to its competition but Hyundai didn’t get the desired response from the update hence it became a dud.
Let us know in the comment section, which car’s facelift you think made the car sales worse. Also, is any car from the lost your favourite?
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