Published on August 29th, 2014 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Future of the Global Luxury Vehicle Market
Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the increasingly competitive global luxury car market are exploring new means of differentiating and positioning their brand in a bid to gain an edge over the competition. Luxury automotive OEMs are also adapting to various emerging social as well as technology trends to keep pace with consumer demand. For instance, smaller, fuel-efficient luxury cars are gaining popularity since size is no longer the key definition of a luxury vehicle.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Future of the Global Luxury Vehicle Market, finds that compact sedans, SUVs and crossovers will be the next big thing as the line between luxury and premium vehicles blurs. More mass market OEMs are launching luxury models while traditional luxury OEMs are stretching downward by offering models in smaller segments. Often these models are available at a lower price point. The need to reduce product development costs has also led to increased platform sharing between mass and luxury cars.
“OEMs have to strike a fine balance while differentiating between volume and luxury models,” says Frost & Sullivan Automotive and Transportation Research Analyst Shwetha Surender. “While brand perception, price and buyer’s experience remain important; cutting edge technology under the hood, improved connectivity inside the car, and bold aerodynamic design are factors that give a luxury car something extra that elevates and sets it apart from the crowd.”
One differentiation strategy is to offer value-added features such as 3-D video display graphics and collision-avoidance systems as standard fitment in luxury models. Connectivity and autonomous driving too are evolving into key parameters by which a brand will be judged in the future.
“Entry level luxury cars that offer unparalleled smart mobility technologies and connected services will make inroads into the global market, especially since Gen X and Y are expected to account for a majority of the luxury sales over the next few years,” notes Surender. “Luxury makers like Daimler and BMW have introduced the CLA sedan and 3 series models at around RM240,000 in anticipation of this trend.”
Further, luxury OEMs are investing in data mining and analytics to enable a seamless transition from online to offline tools and deliver a unique digital brand experience for customers in the luxury vehicle domain.