Audi India launched its Q5 SUV in petrol variant in Ahmedabad on Thursday. Audi Q5 boasts of the most powerful petrol engine in the segment and comes with a sharper and edgier design.
Having a top speed of 237 km/hr, Audi Q5 45 TFSI quattro is the fastest yet, the company said. It produces a power output of 185 kw (252 hp). The price begins from Rs 55.27 lakh onwards.
In 2017, Audi India sold 7,876 units, said Rahil Ansari, head of Audi India. While the German car company recorded a growth of two per cent in 2017, Ansari said this year the company expected the sales to be flat. However, in Gujarat they are expecting a growth of 20 per cent in the current year.
Talking about Audi's future plans, Ansari said the electric variant of Audi Q5 would be brought in by 2020. “Four electric vehicles will be introduced and by 2025, we have a target of having electric variants globally in the entire range of cars,” he added.
Introducing an electric vehicle was not enough, he said, emphasising on the need for a central policy. "You need a good infrastructure also. The reach of electric vehicles will be great," he felt. However, he clarified that the electric variant will be launched regardless of a central policy. Ansari also pressed for a double digit reduction in the tax structure to boost the car sales in India.
He said 95 per cent of the volume sold in the country is locally assembled, but changes in the tax structure were necessary to make it more “Make In India”.
Notably, Audi planned a national launch in Gujarat as they see the state as a substantial market.
After the TATA Nano plant was shifted from West Bengal to Sanand, near Ahmedabad, a lot of people whose land was given for the project became rich overnight and the area saw a spike in the number of Audis. In fact, in the rural areas, it is also referred to as chaar bangdi wali gaadi (car with four bangles). Luxury cars like BMWs and Mercs also have a good market in Gujarat considering that the state has always been industrialised with improving buying capacity.
Gujarat, he said, saw a bit of increase in petrol-driven cars last year compared to the previous years. In addition, there has been a visible change in the mindset of people as more individuals now want to afford a luxury car. While owning a house was first in the priority list for many, consumer behaviour is changing with the advent of low finance EMIs, he observed.