Mercedes leads luxury car segment, BMW recovers

 Chanchal Pal Chauhan   New Delhi     Last Updated: January 11, 2017  | 18:42 IST
Mercedes leads luxury car segment, BMW recovers
Roland Folger, Managing Director and CEO, Mercedes-Benz India

The luxury car market maintained its tractions despite a ban on the sale of diesel cars of over 2000cc in Delhi-NCR - which accounts for 25 per cent of all luxury car sales in India - and demonetisation.

In fact, the country's largest luxury car brand Mercedes-Benz achieved a significant sales milestone by maintaining its leadership for the third year in a row in 2016.

While Munich-headquartered BMW Group India's sales grew 14 per cent year-on-year, Stuttgart-based Mercedes-Benz grew by 20 per cent on the back of significant growth in the SUV segment.

The Mercedes sold 13,231 units in 2016, followed by Munich-headquartered BMW delivered 7,861 cars (7,500 BMW cars and 361 MINI cars) in the calendar year. Audi has not yet announced its sales numbers. However, market sources say the company may have sold about 10,000 units.

"Clocking more than 13,000 for two consecutive years is an achievement for us, given the uncertainties and challenges we faced last year. We are very satisfied with our strategy, which has been bearing fruits and makes us the most preferred luxury car brand for the discerning customers," said Roland Folger, Managing Director and CEO, Mercedes-Benz India.

Frank Schloeder, President (Act), BMW Group India, was equally excited with the company's performance: "2016 has not been an easy year for the automotive industry and that applies equally to BMW Group India. During the course of the year, developments in the Indian economy and policy framework shook the mechanisms of the auto industry. We were faced with challenges no less than any other automobile manufacturer and was confronted with strong pressure from the beginning of the year. Despite a challenging business environment, we managed to increase sales and market share."

Folger also expects a bullish 2017. "We are confident for the mid- to long-term growth prospect of the market, with a stable business environment and long-term roadmap for the luxury car segment in India."


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