Audi expects growth in double digits this year

German auto maker Audi Friday said it expects to see a double-digit growth in its share in the luxury car market this year in India as there will be clarity on the way forward after budget and market will grow.

Bengaluru: German auto maker Audi Friday said it expects to see a double-digit growth in its share in the luxury car market this year in India as there will be clarity on the way forward after budget and market will grow.

"Market will see good strong growth; we will see good strong double digit growth this year. I think until the union budget there will be a bit of uncertainty but post that there will be clarity on the way forward and the market will grow," Audi India Head Joe King told reporters here.

He said the market was very flat last year and hence there would be some pent up demand.

"We will see the market grow in single digit, we will continue to grow our market share, and we will work for double digit growth. It will be high single digit growth this year for the luxury car market," he added.

Audi has reported record sales in the country at 10,851 units in 2014, a growth of more than eight percent over 2013.

On total sales for the luxury car makers this year, he said :"Last year it was roughly 32,000, so growth to 35,000-36,000 can be roughly expected...And if a few things go away in the union budget- some confidence coming back, if there are signs of interest rates easing- so little bit more on that direction, I think we can be able to see a stronger growth."

He also said excise duty was "a bit of shock" to the entire market and termed it as unfortunate.

It may be noted that the extended duty concession on automobile and consumer durable sectors ended in December last year, though auto makers expected it to continue.

Expecting a clear direction to come from the next union budget, King said "India is a strategic market for Audi, we have invested a lot here and we continue to invest and we will continue to grow here...."

Audi today announced the launch of its third showroom in Karnataka along with the Bengaluru launch of the compact convertible Audi A3 Cabriolet priced at Rs 45,83,000 (ex-showroom Bengaluru).

King said Audi has 61 touch points in the country and growth in customer touch points will be around 15 percent this year. "So around 10 more will be added."

Audi plans to launch around 10 plus new models in the country this year, he added.

Responding to a question on adding Indian element in the new models, he said currently 95 or 96 percent of cars sold by it in the country were produced domestically.

Earlier last year, the company had launched the A3 sedan. It is the first model from the Audi stable to be locally produced before being launched in India.

Other models, such as sedans A6 and A4; SUVs Q5, Q7 and Q3, which are locally produced now, were imported as completely built units (CBUs) at the time of launch.

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