Luxury car leader Mercedes-Benz is optimistic about losing its calendar year (CY) 2018 sales performance this year, says Martin Schweinke, MD and CEO, FE.
The company’s best annual sales came in CY18 when it sold 15,538 units. Then comes the general slowdown, followed by the epidemic.
“In Q1CY22, we sold 4,022 cars, an increase of 26% over Q1CY21 sales. For the remaining three quarters of the calendar year, we expect to do even better, “said Schwenk. “
Car manufacturers are sitting in the bank ordering more than five thousand cars. “So far, both the chips and the ship are down. In addition, there is a container shortage and this is negatively affecting the global supply line, “he said.
Mercedes-Benz locally assembles most of its vehicles at its Chakan, Pune plant and even if one part does not arrive on time due to container shortage – it disrupts the production line.
“We have sold every car available to us, and for some models the waiting period is two months to two years for specialized cars such as the G-Class,” said Schweinke.
On Tuesday, Mercedes-Benz launched the all-new C-Class in India, with ex-showroom prices of `55 million (C 200 petrol),` 56 million (C 220d diesel), and `61 million (C 300d diesel). It also launched a financial plan for the C-Class, starting at 60,000 EMI. “Even before the announcement of the price, we received more than 1,000 confirmed bookings for the C-Class, but the waiting period was extended to 2-3 months,” said Schweinke.
Over the years, car manufacturers have been getting a new class of customers, namely; People who benefit from the start-up boom, and those who want to splurge on luxury products.
The average age of a Mercedes-Benz India customer is much lower than in a mature market. In India, for example, the average age of an S-Class buyer is only 38 years – the S-Class is an expensive car starting at Rs 1.6 crore, ex-showroom – and the average age of a C-Class buyer is 35 years. Years
“India has a decent size of young people who have the ability and interest to buy luxury cars. Because India has a young customer base, we need to bring a lot of technology to the dashboard for them and that technology will later spread to more affordable cars and indirectly to a wider market segment, ”said Schwenk.
Mercedes-Benz India has noticed that the percentage of car purchases above Rs 1 crore has increased. In CY18, 40% of buyers bought a Mercedes-Benz car priced below Rs 50 lakh, 48% of buyers bought a car worth Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore and only 12% of buyers bought a car priced above Rs 1 crore.
This has now changed to 24% (buying a car below `50 million), 47% (` 50 million to `1 million), and 29% (` 1 million and above). “It shows that the luxury car market in India is maturing,” he said.
Soon, carmaker EQS will begin local production of electric cars – its top-of-the-line electric cars with a range of about 700 kilometers. “The local production of EQS is a step in the right direction for us to bring the luxurious Evis into the mainstream,” said Schwenk.
In CY20, it introduced EQC electric cars as CBU imports.