Volkswagen plans performance-oriented cars for India, eyes smaller cities

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  • Volkswagen India is aiming to achieve 15 per cent growth in 2024 and the lower tier cities are expected to play a key role in that strategy.
Volkswagen India is aiming to achieve 15 per cent growth in 2024 and the lower tier cities are expected to play a key role in that strategy.

Volkswagen is planning to tap the performance-oriented car segment in India, PTI has reported. The German auto giant is reportedly seeking to cash in on the increasing demand for its premium performance-focused offerings across India. Also, the OEM is reportedly aiming to expand its business not only in the metro cities across India but in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as well. This comes as Volkswagen is aiming to grow its sales in India by 15 per cent in 2024.

The report claims that the auto manufacturer is mulling the idea to emphasise on its GT-badged passenger vehicles in India. The OEM claims to have sold around 44,000 cars in India in 2023. Currently, it sells models like the Taigun SUV and Virtus sedan which are available with GT trim, propelled by a 1.5-litre petrol engine. In an attempt to bring more affordability, Volkswagen has not brought a 1.0-litre petrol engine in its GT lineup as well. As the report indicates, the automaker is betting big on the new engine for its overall growth and to tap the performance-oriented vehicle segment in the country. The automaker unveiled the GT Plus Sport and GT Line just a few days ago. which will be launched soon.

Speaking about the brand’s strategy in India, Ashish Gupta, Brand Director at Volkswagen Passenger Cars India, said that with the GT trims on the Taigun and Virtus, VW has created a new segment, which is witnessing penetration by other OEMs as well. “Earlier, there was no sub-segment of a performance SUV or a performance sedan…So, when we introduced the GT on the Taigun and Virtus that basically created that space, which now everybody’s coming into,” he said.

Bullish on the growth of the performance-based sub-segment, Gupta said that it has been fuelled by evolving consumer preferences over a period of time with top-of-the-line features, safety and performance topping their demand list. He also stated that the consumers are willing to pay a premium for these features. “They’re not willing to compromise. So, definitely, this is a space which will continue to grow,” he reportedly asserted.

speaking further Gupta revealed that earlier, the GT was available only in a 1.5-litre petrol engine option, and around 35-40 per cent of sales were from the GT on both Taigun and Virtus. Gupta further stated that the growth of GT sales is not limited only to the metros and cities. “If I look at the GTs even in the Tier 2 and Tier 3 towns, almost 20 to 25 per cent of my sales are the GTs,” he said, further adding, “The GT has become iconic as a brand for us, and we want to get the maximum leverage out of the GT badge.”

First Published Date: 24 Mar 2024, 13:17 PM IST

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