German luxury-car maker Mercedes-Benz India on Thursday launched its highest selling product E 350 CDI in Pune on Thursday. The car is priced at Rs 57.42 lakh (ex-show room, Pune). This is an addition to the existing E-Class lineup that comprises of the E 200 petrol and the E 250 diesel. The car will be manufactured from its Chakan plant.
“The E 350 CDI is a much awaited product in our successful luxury sedan portfolio, is a very important product in our portfolio, playing a vital role in the product strategy of Mercedes-Benz India. The E-Class remains our highest selling model in India,” said Eberhard Kern, managing director & chief executive officer, Mercedes-Benz India.
However, Kern declined to comment on overall luxury car market of India. According to reports, the Indian luxury car market had sales of 32,000 units in the calendar year 2013 and is expected to cross 50,000 in 2014.
The E-class contributes 30 per cent of Mercedes India’s total sales which is highest amongst all the models. The company has registered 25 per cent half-yearly growth with total sales of 4,717 units in January- June 2014 period. Last year, it sold 9,003 units as compared to 6,840 units sold over the corresponding period of 2012. So far this year, it has launched seventh models out of the 10 product lined up for 2014. E-class is the highest selling product in Mercedes-Benz India’s portfolio in India, with 25,000 units since its introduction in India.
There are additional features though, like rear seat entertainment, 360 degree camera, parking assist, and a higher resolution screen COMAND infotainment system. The audio system is from Harman Kardon. Safety tech includes the Pre-Safe systems, eight airbags, adaptive lights and attention assist.
The new E 350 CDI will compete with other luxury sedans like BMW 530d M Sport, Audi 6 3.0-litre and Jaguar XF 3.0.
Along with 13 other car makers, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has fined Mercedes Benz India Rs 23.08 crore for failing to sell spare parts in the open market, violating competition law. Kern said, “We have received the notice and we are analysing it.”
He declined to comment further. The other car manufacturer include Maruti Suzuki India, Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd, Tata Motors Ltd, Toyota Motor Co., Honda Motor Co, Volkswagen, Fiat, Ford Motor India , General Motors, Nissan, Hindustan Motors, and Skoda.