Audi aims for top slot


German luxury car-maker Audi today said it is eyeing to be the leader in the Indian luxury car market ahead of compatriots BMW and Mercedes Benz.

The Volkswagen group firm, which is currently occupying the third place behind BMW and Mercedes Benz, said it is looking for over 50% sales growth this year as it gears up to launch new models in the country.

"By 2015 we aim to be the number one in the Indian luxury car market," Audi India Head Michael Perschke told reporters here.

The company expects the Indian luxury car market to cross 50,000 units annually in the next five years from about 15,000 units in 2010, he added.

When asked about Audi's sales target during this year, Perschke said: "We are aiming to sell a minimum of 4,500 units and we expect the luxury car market to grow to 20,000-25,000 units."

Last year, Audi sold 3,003 units in India, translating into a growth of 81% vis-a-vis the previous year.

BMW had maintained its lead over rivals to remain the top luxury car-maker in India in 2010, with sales of 6,246 units.

Mercedes had clocked sales of 5,819 cars between January and December, 2010, the highest-ever figure registered by the company in the country.

Audi said it sold 480 units in January 2011, its highest ever monthly sales in India, as against 306 units in the same month last year, up 57%.

The company today showcased the latest version of its flagship sedan A8, priced from Rs 89 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi) onwards. It has already received bookings for about 150 units, which will be delivered in the next 3-4 months.

"More models will be launched this year, including the new A7 and A6," Perschke added.

Besides, the company is also expanding its dealership network to 20 by the end of this year from 15 outlets at present.