1 in 3 Mercedes sold in India is over Rs 1 crore, Co. eyes strong growth in top end vehicles in 2024 | Autocar Professional

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One in three cars sold by Mercedes Benz India cost over Rs 1 crore in 2024. The share of top end vehicles priced more than Rs 1.5 crore, stood at a whopping 25%, clearly underlining the maturing Indian luxury car buyers, opting for more opulence and features, versus price, as seen in the past. 

The consistent movement towards the top end happens at a time when the mainstream car market is set for a course correction this year. As against single digit growth and record high inventory in the mainstream space, Mercedes Benz India posted over 15% growth in January to March 2024, with lowest inventory seen in recent years.

Santosh Iyer, MD and CEO of Mercedes Benz India told Autocar that there is a big shift in consumption of luxury vehicles in the country with the average price of a Mercedes Benz moving up to Rs 88 lakh. 

“25% of our total volumes come from the top end vehicle segment. Earlier the customers wanted to impress, today they want to stand out – so they are willing to spend. A strong development of road infrastructure and inter-city travel has created demand for large luxury cars and thirdly a younger Indian demographic which has been exposed to luxury cars, doesn’t hesitate to spend. All these three factors are driving demand,” Iyer added. 

Thanks to the attractive finance scheme – Agility, offered by its Mercedes Benz Finance, the company has been able to bring in new first time buyers into the brand.

In a market of 11,800 luxury cars sold in 2024, Mercedes Benz had a market share of about 45-46%. On the back of a strong sustained performance, between the three German rivals, Mercedes Benz had a market share of 55%. 

Source: Industry

Interestingly, the share of SUVs of the total sales for Mercedes Benz over the last three years has moved up from 50% to 60% and the Battery Electric Vehicles accounted for 7%, which is almost thrice the size of the overall market.

The share of diesel in SUVs was around 60%, whereas 70% of the sedans sold in 2024 were petrol. 

“We have said we will continue to offer all power trains as long as the customer demands it and the regulations allow us to continue. We will bring in all new products as well and continue to push on EVs,” added Iyer. 

The company has plans of launching 12 new models this year, out of which three have been launched in the second quarter and Mercedes Benz has plans of launching a new battery electric vehicle and two top end vehicles to sustain the excitement at the top end of the market. 

On the demand environment, Iyer said that the overall luxury car market grew by about 12-13% and Mercedes Benz outpaced the market. The overall car market grew by 7% on despatches, however the retail sales are seen as flat. 

“On the entry luxury there is a little bit of stress, but the overall demand remains strong in our core and top end vehicle segment, which accounts for 85% of our total sales. Wexpect to end the year with a strong double digit growth,” assured Iyer. 

(with inputs from Mayank Dhingra) 

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