Published on May 12th, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Audi Using Compact Cars To Drive Sales In China
Audi sees compact cars increasingly becoming the main driver of sales in China as the country’s booming middle class looks for more affordable luxury, said Dietmar Voggenreiter, the automaker’s China president. Audi is seeing stronger growth in the lower segments of Chinese consumers’ luxury spending, driving the shift from larger cars to smaller models, which Voggenreiter said would be “the key growth drivers” in the China market.
“That means mid-class cars – for us, that’s the A4 and the Q5 – and compact segment cars will grow in the future very fast. These are the fastest growing segments,” he said at the Shanghai auto show on Monday.
Voggenreiter said the balance between smaller and larger cars would tilt towards levels in more mature auto markets such as the United States, where smaller cars account for around 65 percent of the total. Larger premium sedans account for 45 percent of sales in China now, with smaller cars making up 55 percent.
The executive said China’s luxury car market has plenty of room for growth and would outstrip the wider sector. Luxury car sales in China account for around 9 percent of total sales, compared to 13-15 percent in more mature markets, he said.
Smaller luxury cars are a big volume driver for Audi, which is the profit engine for Volkswagen Group, and other premium carmakers, all of whom are keen to boost their presence in China, the world’s largest car market.
Immediate rival BMW is bringing 3 new compact models into China a bid to attract middle-class buyers to the brand.