The German luxury car group Audi is expanding its Audi Approved Plus used car business to allow buyers in India to upgrade without having to spend on a new luxury car.
“For our Audi Approved Plus brand, we have moved from seven facilities in 2020 to 14 in 2021 and now we are moving to 20 by the end of this year,” said Balbir Singh Dhillon, head of Audi India, in an interview.
Emphasizing this business, he said, “In recent years, new car prices have been rising continuously, and recently, the pressure on car prices has become even greater due to the rise in commodity prices, shipping costs and foreign exchange prices.”
“It has widened the gap between the non-luxury segment and the luxury segment. When the gap has widened, potential customers fall into this gap and this is where Audi Approved Plus comes in comes into play,” explained Mr. Dhillon.
With Audi Approved Plus The company is trying to fill that gap, he added.
Customers for whom the affordability of a new car is currently a challenge can still experience the luxury segment with the used car.
He highlighted that the company’s used car business grew by 39% between 2020 and 2021, saying there was a 50% increase in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the same period last year.
To accommodate the growth, the company increased its workforce by 50% across the country between 2020 and 2021, he said.
Stressing that the growth in the used car business is constant, he said organized players are taking the lead in the used car business as they have brought transparency to the business.
The company, Dhillon said, has increased its investment in the Audi Approved Plus business by 30% in 2021 compared to 2020.
“We have more than 150 cars available on our portal nationwide. We offer customers a wide choice and it’s a complete online shopping experience for them,” he added.
Much of the demand for the luxury used car segment is in the 20 lakhs to £1 million price range, he said, adding: “The challenge we face is the supply of used cars, as is the demand much more than we can get from our customers.”
He said during the pandemic, ownership periods have lengthened and people are no longer selling their cars often.
“This creates a lot more demand and we are reaching out to all potential customers to see if they want to sell their car or buy a new car,” he added.
The company now wants all of its dealerships to also offer used cars. “Maybe we can envision having more used car showrooms than our new car showrooms,” he said.