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The Toyota Etios was launched with alot of enthusiasm by the Japanese automaker, pumping close to Rs. 3200 crore in the development of the Etios siblings. Little did the company know that just by putting the Toyota symbol and offering something as bland as the Etios would simply not work. Case in point, just log into Facebook and see how the Etios is the butt of all car jokes. Mind you, the Etios is not a bad car at all, its simply overpriced for the quality and driving dynamics it offers. The Honda Jazz, which is a car clearly above the Etios Liva in every aspect comes cheaper than the Etios!
Now Toyota doesn’t really care if the Etios will offer the same levels of driving pleasure as the Ford Fiesta Classic, so the company has now happily positioned the Etios sedan as a luxury cab in major cities including Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Ahmedabad. But how can you position something like the Etios as a luxury cab? Yes, the Etios has good amount of space and legroom but when you pump in such a huge amount in the development of a country specific model, it is imperative to atleast get the styling right. The Etios is simply too boxy and not worth a second glance at all.
Currently Toyota has delivered close to 600 cars to the luxury cab segment and is also going to be part of the Meru cab service. The Etios cab cars are coloured red and white and another 400 will soon be on the roads. The Etios taxis are powered by a petrol engine and use CNG for economic benefits. In certain countries the Corolla and Camry are used as cabs, while there the Innova is famous as a Tourist taxi in India already. Is Toyota getting its volumes from the taxi segment the world over? Who knows but one things for sure, T for Toyota, T for Taxi and this is set to continue with private buyers not so keen to buy the Etios.
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