• Dec 22, 2009
Dead Chevrolet Forester in India – Click above to watch the video after the break

First of all, if you weren't aware already, the first-generation Subaru Forester was later sold in India as the Chevrolet Forester (General Motors doesn't have the CUV in its lineup anymore). There weren't any real changes to the vehicle in any way, it was really just a Subaru with a Bowtie emblem. Now that that's out of the way, we have learned that an 80-year-old man in India named Ashok Tolat sued General Motors after his Forester came to a halt and died in one foot of water during the monsoon season in 2005. Angered that his SUV couldn't handle any weather thrown its way, Tolat sued GM.

General Motors denied any wrongdoing, claiming that the Forester wasn't designed as an all-terrain, all-weather vehicle. Tolat countered with the car's sales brochure, which reportedly likened the Forester's capabilities with that of a mountain goat. "A total misrepresentation," says Tolat. As far as we can recall, we're not aware of any 2005-vintage mountain goats that stalled out and died in one foot of water... so, there you go.

The General took the case all the way to India's Supreme Court after losing Tolat's lawsuit in two lower courts, but it ultimately lost there too. It took three years, but Tolat finally got GM to buy back the Forester and pay his legal fees. Score one for determination, even if we're a little leery of the court's ruling without the rest of the facts. In any case, click past the break to watch video of the story as covered on NDTV.

[Source: NDTV via YouTube via TTAC]



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 41 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      How much MPG does a Mountain Goat usually get? I might have to get me one of those
        • 5 Years Ago
        i think the mpg on a mountain goat stands for Mountains Per Goat.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Chevrolet Forester? Wha? I think the term "auto industry" is just a facade. All the cars we drive are made by one big company which puts up a front as a bunch of small companies just to fend off the anti-trust lawsuits.

      Think about the "7 degrees of separation" in the auto industry:

      GM contracts Subaru, Daewoo, Suzuki to build cars (among others). VW owns audi, Lambo, porsche and now most of Suzuki. Toyota and GM have a long history of joing parnership (Vibe/Matrix as an example). So the three biggest auto-makers in the world have some type of joint production status . On top of that, Suzuki also then contracts with Nissan to build the equator...which means Toyota, GM, VW and the Nissan/Renault group work in some type of partnership.....

      Which basicaly leaves what, Ford and Yugo as the only potentially independant auto makers?
        • 5 Years Ago
        VW only owns 19.9% of Suzuki, which last I checked isn't most of a company. And Zastava (what was known as Yugo in the U.S.) is owned by Fiat.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Ford and Mazda partnership is not much different than the GM-Toyota or GM-Subaru partnership. It's just lasted longer. What's different between the Vibe and Matrix that doesn't hold true for the Tribute/Escape, B-Series/Ranger, Fiesta/Mazda2, Focus/Mazda3, etc?

        Volvo also plays into that as well, since many Ford and Volvo models share platforms, but the design and styling differences are much greater than in the Ford/Mazda arena where they are much more similar.
      • 5 Years Ago
      But When was the last time you saw a flood on the mountains. If anything, GM just had lousy lawyers.. mountain goats hang from cliffs, even in India
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah but sometimes even mountain goats have to wade through rivers.
      • 5 Years Ago
      i see india really is becoming more americanized.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I would think Subaru would be liable as well...isn't there a legal term for that?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @John H.

        nuclear power
        develops their own fighter jets
        ...
        ..
        .
        most software we use is actually made there.
        India's 'silicon valley' is bigger than ....
        check MSDN developers forum and look @ the names of the moderators.
        check codeproject.com, you will be stunned how many articles ae published by people from india.

        Washington wants to ally with india in case China gets a big mouth.
        me thinks China has warned the united states in 2006 very clearly.
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SHjIb6trxBI
        (this man apparently got told something, he doesn't wanna share with us).
        • 5 Years Ago
        Johnny is right guys. Think about it. Subaru to us is the "rough" "tough" "all-wheel-drive" vehicle right? But in India, it would fail horrendously to the severe driving conditions. And that would ruin their image of being rough and tough. Makes sense.
        • 5 Years Ago
        To die in one foot of water is piss poor, In fact it looks like it has almost one foot of ground clearance anyway.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Oh yeah Johnny boy ... so you think everyone including Audi, BMW, MB, Ford, GM, Honda, Toyota, VW, Nissan-Renault, Suz ... not to mention SSC, Bugatti, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche are idiots, right?
        • 5 Years Ago
        John H? Yesterday it's the silly Fiesta comment, today it's one about India being a "backwards" country? Man oh man, I can't wait to see what absurdity you'll come up with next. I wonder what qualifies in your mind as forwards or backwards country. Umm...do you happen to own a Subaru rallying jacket? Maybe also a WRC hat? Do you play DiRT because it's your favorite game "eva"?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hi this is hrangoli...
      www.manadhi.com
      • 5 Years Ago
      Chevy should never get any credit for the SUBARU forester. Chevy's got NOTHING on Subaru.

      "General Motors denied any wrongdoing, claiming that the Forester wasn't designed as an all-terrain, all-weather vehicle."

      How about saying that driving through a foot of water is an unpredictable activity. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes cars get swept away in shallower water.

      But saying it isn't all-Terrain and all-weather is stupid. Driving through deep water is not a normal operating mode.

      Subarus don't have high exhaust systems, and it would not take much to flood the exhaust. The pipe work goes under the differential, and doesn't rise much to the cylinder heads, not much height. If the vehicle stops, and the engine can't keep the exhaust clear, it will choke and stall. A stock forester doesn't have a snorkel intake, nor a vertical exhaust stack.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree,
        GM lost this one based on their comments after-the-fact.

        Had they presented their case better, I wouldn't agree with this dude's case.
        I mean how can we prove that a mountain goat is amphibious 100% of the time?
        If this guy had driven into quicksand, would a mountain goat be able to get out?

        That's a lousy case. The advertising is not the problem. Its GM's reaction I don't agree with.



        • 5 Years Ago
        "Chevy's got NOTHING on Subaru"

        I dunno man, I think a Tahoe or Trailblazer could handle a foot of water.
      • 5 Years Ago
      LMAOOOO Goats, the first thing that came to mind was Team America...

      Gary: I was just a boy when the infidels came to my village in their Blackhawk helicopters. The infidels fired at the oil fields and they lit up like the eyes of Allah. Burning oil rained down from the sky and cooked everything it touched. I could only hide myself and cry as my goats were consumed by the fiery black liquid death. In the midst of the chaos, I could swear that I heard my goats screaming for help. As quickly as they had come, the infidels were gone. It was on that day I put a jihad on them. And if you don't believe it, then you'd better kill me now, because I'll put a jihad on you, too.

      Terrorist: I like you. You have balls. I like balls.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "Go F*** A GOAT!!" hahahah 40yr old virgin is an awesome movie
      • 5 Years Ago
      great more nany laws to make to beat over people with out common sense.......
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hilarious. Truth in advertising is apparently very important and sometimes literal.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "The General took the case all the way to India's Supreme Court after losing Tolat's lawsuit in two lower courts, but it ultimately lost there too..."

        That's just too baaa-aa'd GM lost to the goat...
      • 5 Years Ago
      Well, good for him I guess. At least he wasn't after some exorbitant sum. I wouldn't mind seeing more of that anchorlady. And nice tow vehicle by the way. I guess GM and all makes will have to be careful how they market their cars. Good thing they weren't using the "Like a Rock" campaign there.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Actually, like a rock would have been a much more truthful slogan. Rocks can't move themselves either.
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