There is no doubt that 2012 turned out to be one of the toughest years for over 20 passenger vehicle brands in India. One auto brand that has not only bucked the trend, but also ended the year with a stunning performance, second time in a row is Audi.
After a strong 84% sales growth in 2011, and around 56% sales growth in 2012, the German luxury carmaker is hopeful of becoming number one luxury car brand in India by 2015.
During 2012, every car brand was struggling to boost their sales and there was mixed fortunes, even as the new launches couldn’t sustain a strong sales momentum. But, Audi continued to see strong demand for its cars, and it was the only company that revised its annual sales target upwards and to see its total sales crossing 8,600 units in 2012. In 2011 too, it increased its annual sales target after a strong growth momentum. Thus, this is the second year in a row when Audi will be recording strong double digit growth, while surpassing its annual targets.
Mr Michael Perschke head of Audi India said that “We had set a goal of 8,000 cars to be sold by the end of this year. But we achieved our target even before the year ended and revised our sales target to minimum 8,600 cars. We are confident of achieving this revised target as well. By 2015, we aim to be the No 1 luxury car brand in India, and based on our current performance we are well on track to achieve this objective.”
Mr Perschke attributed the success and the fastest growth of the luxury brand to four key areas on which, Audi put strong thrust. Those included expansion of product portfolio and service offering, ramp up of dealer network, progressive and engaging marketing communication activities and infusing skilled talent at three levels corporate, dealership and production. Audi made five products launches during the year and it now offers 12 models in the country.
He said that “Our customers are able to identify with our brand equity, which drives on sportiness, progressiveness and sophistication. This is fuelling our growth in India. The new Audi A4, Audi A8L and the Audi Q series have contributed significantly to make 2012 a success in terms of sales in India. Demand for luxury SUVs like the Audi Q7, Audi Q5 and Audi Q3 is fast catching on even in tier-II and tier-III cities in India.”
The company opened at least eight new dealerships during the year, thereby increasing the number of dealerships to 24 across the country.
He added that “In a demanding economic environment to achieve targets even before the year ends clearly testifies the strength of the brand Audi and the affinity and aspiration it carries amongst its enthusiasts and customers. But factors like rising fuel prices, depreciating rupee, changing registration taxes in various states, reduction in retail loans and speculation on higher duty on diesel cars, together had a negative impact on the automobile industry in 2012.”
Meanwhile, Audi has announced price hikes of 1% to 5% across models effective January 1st 2013. The increase will be in the range between INR 59,000 and INR 3,69,000 per vehicle. For Audi, India is the third biggest market in Asia Pacific after China and Japan.
Source - www.mydigitalfc.com