Having consolidated its position at the top of the Indian luxury car market, German premium car maker Audi on Thursday launched a cabriolet version of its most affordable sedan in India, A3, at Rs. 44.75 lakh.
Aimed at a niche segment of enthusiasts who want the option of a collapsible roof, Audi said it would be happy if it could sell 200-250 units of the car in a year to begin with. For the more budget minded, it has lined up the hatchback version of the car, which when launched sometime during the festive season next year, is expected to be the most affordable luxury car in the country.
“We knew this year would be a challenge because a majority of our products are at the end of their lifecycle but the A3 helped us maintain our double-digit growth during the year,” said Joe King, head, Audi India.
“Next year we have lined up 10 new launches including updated versions of the Q3 and we are confident it would be a better year than 2014. Double-digit growth is a given,” he added.
Audi surpassed the 10,000unit sales mark in India last year and crossed that milestone last month this year. However, the company, which is being hounded closely by compatriot Mercedes with its new line up of compact cars, sports utility vehicles and sedans, has seen growth taper in recent months.
Mercedes launched the petrol version of the next generation C Class, one of its largest selling cars, last month and will follow it up with a diesel version next year. It will also add the compact CLA sedan in early 2015.
“There is aggressive competition not only from Mercedes but also from BMW and Jaguar Land Rover. But we do not look at them when we make our business case...we only look at ourselves,” King said.
“We will not fight for the number 1 position. That is not our strategy or obsession,” he added.