German carmaker Audi seeks to accelerate its sales growth in India with the launch of its all-new Q5 SUV. The company will open bookings of the upcoming Q5 in the next couple of weeks. Audi had suspended sales of its popular SUVs Q3, Q5 and Q7 last year when India moved to BS-VI emission norms with the company also deciding to stop offering diesel engine options in the country.
Balbir Singh Dhillon, Audi India Head, told PTI that the company plans to launch the locally produced Q5 in the month of November. “We have been waiting for this for a long time. So far we are doing extremely well in spite of the fact that some of our volume models like Q range are not there in full strength,” he said. “We are now looking forward towards the next phase of our growth and I’m pretty confident that will also come sooner than later. The Q5 is one of our most successful models from the time that we have been in India.”
Audi India had sold 1,639 units in 2020; in terms of growth in the first eight months of 2021, the carmaker has already witnessed 115% increase in sales. Dhillon highlighted that on the volume side, Audi already has a three digit growth for this year. On the absence of its popular high volume models from the Indian market, the executive pointed out that when the emission norms in India moved last year from BS-IV to BS-VI, the company has also decided that to go from petrol plus diesel strategy to petrol and electrification.
“Homologation is a long process that takes time and the pandemic also did not help. So the time got stretched. Normally homologation happens in about nine months but because of the pandemic it got delayed,” Dhillon said. “We will open up the bookings of the new Q5 in a couple of weeks and then we will start the deliveries next month.”
He also said that Audi fulfilled its promise of bringing the highest number of electric cars. “No other manufacturer even in the volume segment has brought in five electric cars. Our promise of five electric cars in India is fulfilled and now we will fulfill our promise of continuing our cars with petrol strategy.”