Run Snob Run!!!

I am sure that you remember the movie Run Forest Run. I was thirteen or fourteen at those times and I still remember that nice movie :)
When I started to looking around people and what they are driving, I noticed something. People love to buy cars which can make them look snob. Actually, their cover story is; this car has a great design or this car is a status or they make up a story from that brand actually which does not exist and they are saying this car is reflection of this brand. Sorry!!! But car experts do not eat this :) And when someone asks critical questions about your car, don’t make up story, you will look very pathetic. Best option accept that you want to show off or change the topic. My recommendation is to change topic for you ;)
I have recently post blog about snobbish cars. The winner is Mini and Audi A3. Mainly in emerging markets, these two cars are line between rich and poor. Hopefully, there is a new one Audi A1. People who could not manage to buy an A3, now  you can buy A1. And it does not look boring like A2, many of snobs don’t know that. Search google ;) This very well designed and equipped with high technology of Audi, sorry Volkswagen is a piece of art. And that’s main reason you should not buy it. Firstly; like other Audis it is over-priced. Unless you are buying A4, may be A5, A6 or A8, just buy a VW it is cheaper and same quality. In addition; none of the Volkswagen or Audi cars have problem with pedals ;) Second reason not to buy A1 is you have Alfa Romeo MiTo and Fiat 500. Wait couple of months more and MiTo will have double clutch auto. Fiat 500 is the best looking car on planet and MiTo also. I cannot ignore the fact that; Audi A1 has the best interior with best quality on market. Do not expect to see this quality in Mini or MiTo or 500 or Polo. It is really Audi. I didn’t like the exterior :(
So, I could not find a reasonable reason to buy an A1 while there are better options are available. Audi I was loving A6 2.8 Quattro in 1998 but then things have changed. Still, Audi is much much much car company than some companies ;)
I really wish that, automotive industry never had the snob effect influence on cars. But nobody can do anything for this. As the snobs stick on one unlucky car, many people stop loving it :(

Katerina Stikoudi is washing a car :) – Κατερίνα Στικούδη είναι το πλύσιμο αυτοκινήτων

If you are not Cypriot or Greek, you won’t probably know who is Katerina Stikoudi. She won the title Miss Hellas in 2005 and she represented Greece in Miss World. She is currently hosting TV programme Mega Star in Mega TV in Greece. And also she has a video clip with Lava called Tora.
Accidently I found a video of her in Mega Star programme. This is something very usual but the interesting thing; she was washing and filling up cars. But the problem is, she is washing a pre-historic, ancient Jaguar XJ. Production team picked up the worst car to wash! And also she was cleaning the wind screen of a Peugeot 206 CC and filling up with petrol. Then a guy comes with a Citroën C2 with plastic wheel covers!
Elaa reee! You found the worst cars to appear on TV! Jaguar XJ is classic but too classic! My opinion; she should be washing up a Maserati GranTurismo, for cleaning the wind-screen Jaguar XF and instead of C2 they should have used a Alfa Romeo MiTo. These cars will complete the sexiness ;)
In Greek;
Αν δεν είναι Κύπριοι της Ελληνικής, δεν θα έχετε ίσως γνωρίζουν ποιος είναι Κατερίνα stikoudi. Κέρδισε τον τίτλο Μις Ελλάς το 2005 και εκπροσώπησε την Ελλάδα στη Μις Κόσμος. Είναι φιλοξενεί σήμερα τηλεοπτικών προγραμμάτων Mega Star στο Mega τηλεόραση στην Ελλάδα. Και επίσης έχει ένα βίντεο κλιπ με Lava ονομάζεται Tora.

Κατά λάθος βρήκα ένα βίντεο από της στο πρόγραμμα Mega Star. Αυτό είναι κάτι πολύ συνηθισμένο, αλλά το ενδιαφέρον πράγμα? Ήταν πλύσιμο και γεμίζει αυτοκίνητα. Αλλά το πρόβλημα είναι, αυτή είναι το πλύσιμο των προ-ιστορικό, αρχαία Jaguar XJ. Παραγωγή αυξήθηκε το χειρότερο αυτοκίνητο να πλένεται! Και επίσης, ήταν η οθόνη καθαρισμού αέρα ενός Peugeot 206 CC και γεμίζουν με βενζίνη. Στη συνέχεια, έρχεται ένας τύπος με ένα C2 Citroën με πλαστικό τιμόνι καλύπτει!

ELAA reee! Βρήκατε το χειρότερο αυτοκίνητα για να εμφανιστεί στην τηλεόραση! Jaguar XJ είναι κλασικό αλλά πολύ κλασικό! Η γνώμη μου? Αυτή θα πρέπει να είναι το πλύσιμο μια Maserati GranTurismo, για τον καθαρισμό του ανεμοθώρακα Jaguar XF και αντί του C2 θα πρέπει να έχουν χρησιμοποιήσει Alfa Romeo Mito. Αυτά τα αυτοκίνητα θα ολοκληρώσει την sexiness ;)


Today, Tomorrow, Emotions, Toyota

Empire of robustness started to fall into parts. Toyota constructed its brand identity based on high quality production techniques, problem free cars and reliability and ignoring status value, a design philosophy, increasing interior material quality. Until last couple of weeks, being problem free was enough to sell millions of cars every year. However, a tiny problem with gas pedal was adequate to prepare a huge domino effect on Toyota.
In any aspect of life, you need to divide your assets into different places to reduce the risks. They are doing this in stock exchange; investors buy different shares and in case of emergency their loss is minimized. If they invest everything on one paper, they might have huge return but any fluctuations will destroy everything.
Toyota did something similar to investing all your wealth into one share, and they avoided reducing the risk by separating them. When you think about Toyota, you will probably think about Japanese good prices, good quality and dull looking car. Toyota never focused on design, status icon, product image as much as they focused on problem free. What they have done is a very good thing but they should have focused on other aspects to strength their brand image.
Let’s think about Alfa Romeo and Mercedes. Alfa Rome has a very bad reputation for breaking down, nowadays break down issues reduced but that’s a part of Alfa Romeo. However, this does not prevent people to buy Alfa Romeo. I would definitely buy a MiTo instead of idiotic looking Toyota Yaris. MiTo has the passion, design and Italian style, with potential problems. But those other assets of Alfa Romeo’s brand image motivating people to purchase an Alfa Romeo and ignoring the failing fact! And people still buying Alfa Romeo and they could emerge emotional relationship with their car but with Toyota it is impossible. The only relationship which you can make is the green digital clock! Toyota ignored the emotional part of marketing!
Mercedes suffered a worse problem in 2004 with electronic braking system SBC. It was an innovative electronic braking pedal which works totally electronic. And it broke down! Suddenly, in some cars it did not wish to slow down the car. Mercedes faced huge profit loss and recalled many cars. But did this destroy Mercedes totally? Of course not, because Mercedes had other attributes associated to brand. Like; status value, smooth riding quality, high quality interior, eye catching design. All these assets helped Mercedes to recover more easily and people never forgot the SBC problem totally.
So, Toyota does not have any strong assets to sustain its brand image and recover easily. They could invest on advertisements and PR campaigns heavily to recover all these. But they should revise their policy about manufacturing cars! As I can see from their green digital clock, they treat car as a calculator and they ignore the fact that people might associate different attributes to a car and those attributes can save the brand in case of emergency.

Pictures are from;
EuroNCAP Website
Alfa Romeo Website
Mercedes Website


Again VW Passat CC :)

I don’t like to promote specific cars in my blog by saying their power and how they accelerate because you can find all these things on internet. However, this time I am making an exception! As you guessed from my previous blog I really love the Passat CC. They managed to vanish the boringness of family Passat and they created something totally different. And I checked the VW’s Germany website for more details and I found that they made some revisions on engine range. Now we can order Passat CC with 2.0 turbo diesel engine producing 170 horsepower and coupled with 6 speed double clutch quick automatic gearbox. And when you add other things, car ends up close to 50,000€ in Germany. This price unfortunately includes the stupid boring Passat interior but the rest of the car is very nicely made, you won’t stuck on that! For this price tag, you can buy BMW 3 Series with similar boring interior, also Mercedes C Class and more boring Audi A4. However, if you wish to order you BMW, Mercedes or Audi with this engine power and many options price will love to rocket to very high level without any hesitation.
I can hear from Audi lovers, buy A5 Sportback with its drawback! Sorry but A5 Sportback can be awarded as the most boring car of 2009! I like the Audi A6 but I could not like either A4 or A5 Sportback (normal A5 looks very good). One more thing, I don’t like to pay extra money to car which tend to understeer. An expensive car should oversteer (losing its back on corners). Since Audi A6 2.8 Quattro, I stopped loving Audi. Audi makes great cars with very high technology and offers the excellent Quattro but I cannot love Audi. For me it is just Audi! Audi does not recall something very specific like its competitors. That is the thing which makes Audi different. People who find BMW too sporty and Mercedes to grandpa style directly head onto Audi. But I like BMW and Mercedes :)
Anyway, if you want to have a four door coupe with five seat which is economical and also offer DSG gearbox and four wheel drive; then order a Passat CC ! For this price tag, you cannot buy something better ;)
The next car which will make me exciting be Alfa Romeo MiTo automatic!

Audi A1 vs. Mini and Fiat 500

Yes, Audi is again in small segment business! After they have crashed the A2 to wall very badly in 2002, they didn’t have the mood for a small Audi, until now. As the Mini made superb hit on hot playing lists, manufacturers started to think about introducing small cars but cool ones! As usual Ford had a chance to succeed and as usual they ruined it (StreetKa). Actually it was very nice car. Fiat became very confident and introduced the new Fiat 500 and they received a demand which they have never imagined of during a world crisis. After that Alfa Romeo introduced the MiTo which is the prettiest car on market! 
And in Ingolstadt, Germany where the Audi’s HQ is placed started to think. And they said “Ja, wir müssen einführen, ein kleines Auto”. Of course, they remembered their traumatic experience with A2 and hesitated a bit but they didn’t give up. Now Audi A1 is here :) It looks very good, actually millions times better looking than the R8. As German traditions, it will have every kind of technology Audi is offering in other ranges.
But there is a bit problem when I read the news on internet. Audi is expecting to sell 80.000 A1s per year !?! After reading several times, I noticed that they were not speaking of a year Mars calendar. They are planning to sell 80.000 in 365 days time. Because, Mini sold more than 60.000 last year and Fiat 500 had enormous demand. So why not? Actually 80.000 is very optimist prediction. Let’s be honest, people will not sell their Minis or 500s or MiTos to buy A1!

There is something which cannot be put into number, that’s the soul. Mini and Fiat 500 have heritage brought from old times, even though the Mini is more expensive than old times. But people want to live 1960s dream again in contemporary world. It is the same with Fiat 500; 500 is bringing the black and white Italian Shows from 1960s to HD quality! They are both retro and reflecting their character. Alfa Romeo MiTo; it is Alfa Romeo. It is like a love in first sight, you won’t think about the future. You just want to be together. I cannot describe Alfa Romeo better. And Audi A1; I am pretty sure that it has more gadgets than its competitors and offer better of everything and never break down. But it is just A1, nothing else! I am sure that, people who got bored from Mini and MiTo will buy A1. However expecting 80.000 in these conditions is a very optimistic approach to automotive. My prediction is; no more than 50.000 first couple of years. We will see it later ;)

Picture are from;
Fiat Website
Mini Website
Alfa Romeo Website