There was a time when people in small towns had to make do with the not-so-fancy cars as luxury car makers were too busy satisfying the needs of the well-heeled in the metros. But not anymore! Ever since they realized the potential, the luxury carmakers are now seen running towards these towns with all they have got. Luxury car dealers, who have already made it big in Ahmedabad, are spreading out to districts like Surat, Rajkot among others.
In the meantime, dealers are also upgrading their Ahmedabad dealerships to sell pre-owned luxury cars. Each showroom expansion investment would come up to Rs 25-30 crore, so you can expect a total investment of up to Rs 100 crore by the three major premium car dealers in the city, Parsoli’s BMW, Benchmark Cars’ Mercedes and Audi Ahmedabad.
Ahmedabad based BMW car dealer Parsoli Motors opened its new sales and service showroom at Surat earlier this month, and is also in the process of assessing the feasibility of setting up showrooms in other towns too.
“We plan to come up with one showroom each in the north, south, east and west corners of the state. Surat is very vibrant now, and is a booming market for luxury cars. So, we started off with Surat, other showrooms can come in at places like Rajkot among others”, said Talha Sareshwala, managing director of Parsoli Motors. He also mentioned that the scope for luxury cars is surprisingly huge in places like Vapi, Bharuch, Rajkot, Jamnagar and Bhavnagar in Gujarat.
You may find it surprising that around 90-95 premium cars sell per month in the city, and BMW has a market share of around 40 per cent. Sareshwala also plans to come up with a BMW pre-owned cars showroom here in the city. “We are planning to have a BMW Premium Selection showroom here in the city. It will come up within this year”, Sareshwala said. BMW Ahmedabad is experiencing a 40-45 per cent annual growth rate. The dealership has sold over 300 BMWs in 2010.
Mercedes Benz India has already opened its pre-owned cars service, ‘Proven Exclusivity Program’ in the city recently. Mercedes Benz has been in the Indian market for more than 10 years now and has around 30,000 cars plying on the road. It has planned to get cars that are not more than six years old, refurbish them and sell through their outlets.
Audi is planning similar things too. Audi, which recently launched its premium sedan A8L in the Indian market, is also looking at expanding its network in Surat, along with opening a pre-owned cars service here in Ahmedabad.
Samir Mistry, managing director, of Audi Ahmedabad said, “We are coming up with a new showroom at Surat by end of April, while we are also upgrading our current showroom in Ahmedabad to a 20,000 square feet one by February 2012. We plan to start a pre-owned cars service in Ahmedabad soon.” Audi sold 285 cars in Ahmedabad in 2010, up 60 per cent from 2009.