Be Lankan, Buy Lankan – the story of Micro Trend

This I saw on a Micro Trend Car. For those of who don’t know Micro Trend it is a locally assembled Chinese car. It is the second car to be put on Sale by Micro, the first company to produce a fully indigenous car.

When I saw this only it struck to me that I have seen only a very few Micro Trends on the road. You can’t complain much about the looks of it, if I remember correctly it was designed by an Italian design firm. Since it is Chinese, it must be as good as any Chinese made car. But for whatever reason, you see more Cherry QQ’s than Micro Trends on the road. And personally speaking I think the QQ is a bit hideous looking to start with.

Maybe it’s the price factor. The QQ is a few lakh rupees cheaper. So is the Maruthy 800. But what about the cars that are in the same price range. The Maruthy Zen and the Maruthy Alto. I think they are in the same price range. But they seem to be more popular than the local make.

Maybe the deep down reason is that we do not trust our local makes. This lack of trust is keeping us away from the Trend. When I saw the Trend for the first time, I thought it was a pretty good looking car. There were two things that kept me away from it, it’s size (I need a bigger car due to my long limbs) and the lack of automatic transmission (it’s a luxury that I have come to enjoy too much with the bumper to bumper traffic on Colombo roads).

So why do people choose the Indian or the Chinese varieties over the Sri Lankan assembled Chinese car? Maybe the price? So if the government gives the company enough subsidies to help them bring the price down, then they may have a pretty good market.

But the good news is the two Korean SUV’s assembled by Micro in Sri Lanka seems to be having a good response from the market. The secret there maybe because they enjoy a price advantage. So why not do that for the cars and create a Sri Lankan automotive industry?

 


  1. I looked at the Micro Trend before I settled for the Maruti (not Maruthy) Zend which were around the same price last year.

    It was too small for me plus I found the pedals too close together, that is my main complain.

    Besides Maruti has been running for years in Sri Lanka and more in India and have to be pretty decent to survive either roads.

  2. Sam

    It is mainly the price factor – that was the only advantage Micro had. But out government was courtesy enough to introduce new tax to locally produced cars and break that advantage. Since there is no technology advantage, brand advantage or price advantage Sri Lankans have no specific reason to buy that car.
    Upali was the first one to make a car in Asia after Japan. Even then our government makes sure we won’t ever have any successful automobile industry in Sri Lanka. We won’t ever have technology industry in Sri Lanka, specially something like automobile – we are a labor suppler.

  3. N

    what are the prices like out of curiousity?

  4. WARUNA

    Micro Trend Car is Good,
    But their after service is very bad.I have some fast experiences.

  5. Mohamed

    It was happened to me to buy the Micro Trend car as the permit was suddenly cancelled and allowed me to buy locally manufactured car. Nice car with good looking interior as well as the outer features. But the problem is the petrol consumption. I found it is working only 7 – 8 km per litre and cost me 15/= per km even though the engine capacity is 1050cc.
    I complained to the company and they repaired twice but still the same.
    I use this car in Colombo city only.
    I want to dispose this car and buy another Japanese made small car, but the problem is I have to wait for completing 5 years for the permit condition.

  6. Suresh

    I am using a Micro Trend. It’s been 10 months now & had driven only 6500 KM. Being a triptronic (Manual & Auto) I have been having some issues lately. The car tends to fall on neutral gear while on drive every now & then. it’s really dangerous as it happens in the middle of the road & I need to switch off the engine & restart it back after 5 to 10 min.

    I did have a option to choose a MICRO or a VIVA ELITE. Having the feeling of Being SRI LANKAN by SRI LANKAN policy finally has put me in trouble.

    We do spend 1.5 M ruppes to buy this car & then when it comes to repair it’s a hell. cos, untill they do it up. I have to travel in a tuk tuk.

    This is a Sad Story as we think of being a sri lankan.

  7. Dhammika

    I read all commets. Usefull to me get a decision. Thanks lot.

    Dhammika

  1. 1 Global Voices Online » Sri Lanka: Be Lankan, Buy Lankan

    […] Sampath’s Mindspace on Micro Trend, an indigenous car. “Maybe the deep down reason is that we do not trust our local makes. This lack of trust is keeping us away from the Trend. When I saw the Trend for the first time, I thought it was a pretty good looking car. There were two things that kept me away from it, it’s size (I need a bigger car due to my long limbs) and the lack of automatic transmission (it’s a luxury that I have come to enjoy too much with the bumper to bumper traffic on Colombo roads).” Share This […]




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