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Merc gets lift from Ludhiana

india Updated: Mar 17, 2009 00:11 IST
Amit Sharma
Amit Sharma
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

There might be a global downturn but not for the richie rich of Ludhiana!

Mercedes-Benz, which chose the city for the launch of its Rs 54-lakh M-Class sports utility vehicle (SUV) in the north on Monday, bagged 10 bookings on day one. Ludhiana accounted for nearly 60 per cent of Merc sales in the region in the past 13 months.

Dr Wilfried Aulbur, CEO and managing director, Mercedes-Benz India, said: “Ludhiana’s unmatched contribution to our sales proves the city can never go into recession. This very spirit of the city made us choose Punjab over other northern states for the launch.”

Of the 276 Mercs sold in the region during the last calendar year, 150 were in Ludhiana alone, contributing to a growth of 48 per cent in the overall Punjab market over the previous year, compared to 45.77 per cent in national sales.

“In the last two months we sold 22 cars, and now with the M-Class SUV, the figures are bound to be impressive by March-end,” said an excited Manjit Singh Bala, managing director, Tai-Pan Traders, the authorised dealer.

And why is Ludhiana crazy about the Merc? The reason given by a local hosiery unit owner here might be indicative: “I

never felt the need to buy a Mercedes, yet ended up shelling out nearly Rs 1 crore for a top model just because my business partner bought it.” Today, his spanking new acquisition is parked right next to his partner's on the factory premises.

Downturn be damned.