A Mercedes for under Rs. 20 lakh? Possibly
The company, which will complete launching of products aimed to drive volumes in India by 2015-16, expects 40 per cent of its entire product range to be priced below Rs. 25 lakh in the next 5- 10 years. It is investing Rs. 250 crore on new product line up till 2014.
"Yes, we are thinking in this direction," Mercedes-Benz India managing director and CEO Peter Honegg told reporters when asked if the company would introduce a model below Rs. 20 lakh category to gain volume."I will not eliminate the case that we will have a car below Rs. 20 lakh," he added.
He said the upcoming model A-Class in next year could be priced in this range. The company will also introduce a sports utility vehicle based on the A-Class platform.
Asked if the company will source smaller engines from French car giant Renault, with which the German firm's parent Daimler has a global association, for the Indian market, Honegg said the company may consider it in future although no decision has been taken yet.
Talking about its product plan, he said: "In the next 5-10 years, 40 per cent of our new models will be below priced Rs. 25 lakh... The premium segment, which is in the range of Rs. 20 lakh to Rs. 30 lakh, is witnessing good growth in India, while the luxury segment above that is flat."