Luxury cars bring luxurious options for Indian owners
27 February 2008
Luxury car market is growing steadily in India - unruffled by the people's car boom. Connoisseurs can look forward to a delightful choice. Somma Banerjjee reports
The people's car market ushered in by the Tata Nano, has not obliterated the luxury car segment in India. Car lovers' passion for the finest dream machine on wheels knows no bounds just as the priciest liquors never cease to find their way to the cellars of the rich and famous.
Luxury carmakers are aware of the buyers' passions. So they are steadily going about their plans to manufacture and / or sell luxury cars for the Indian market, unruffled by the renewed zest for small cars after the debut of the Nano.
The current luxury car market in India is an estimated 4,500-5,000 units per annum and is expected to grow to 10,000 units by 2010.
No wonder what prompted ace car designer Dilip Chabria to showcase his super luxury concept car 'Ambierod', the most expensive designer car at the Ninth Auto Expo in New Delhi. This Amby costs a neat Rs4 crore ($1 million). Chabria said the Amberoid was an attempt to evolve the good old Amby to be a part of India's future.
Amby comes with a sleek instrument panel backed by a satellite navigation system, rear vision camera, three LCD televisions, Internet and videoconferencing-enabled flat bed and multi-coloured mood lighting.
The best of comfort, appearance and amenities besides an average selling price above $36,000 entitle a car to be classified as a luxury vehicle. However, that doesn't mean that all cars over $36,000 are always luxury cars. In Europe, the luxury car is often referred to as an "executive car". Companies such as Bentley, Rolls Royce, Maybach, Mercedes, BMW, Lexus, Audi, and Cadillac are commonly viewed as luxury car manufacturers.
Hyundai Motor India drives in more luxury cars into India
India's second-largest passenger car manufacturer, Hyundai Motor India, is considering bringing in more luxury cars in India, company president Ashok Jha said at the launch of the compact car, the i10, in November 2007.
According to Jha, some of the models manufactured by the Korean parent company might be relevant to India. The luxury cars would be brought to India as completely knocked down (CKD) kits and assembled at the Tamil Nadu plant. In India, the company sells the luxury car Sonata, a 2359cc luxury sedan ,which comes as a completely built unit (CBU) from Korea.