FADA – Federation of Indian Dealers Associations – in concomitance with the New Delhi Auto Expo, organized Auto Summit, the convention dedicated to the Indian dealers of cars, trucks, commercial vehicles, motorcycles, three wheelers, four wheelers, buses and bicycles. Yes, even bicycles. What’s so funny? I met a dealer who sells in Delhi – with great revenues – dozens of thousands of bicycles! In his dealerships (representing also many automotive brands) hundreds of customers enter every day, to buy cars, motorcycles and… bicycles!
More than 60 stunning speakers. Anand Mahindra – vice president of Mahindra Group, Rajiv Bajaj – CEO of Bajaj Auto, Stephen Wade – NADA Chairman (the Association of the American dealers), Philippe Geneve – President of the French dealers, and many others. Also the Italian experience of the Dealers Consortia has been presented: this successful innovation – and the organization of the 700 dealers of AsConAuto - is a best practices still unique in the World!
One… BILLION of customers. India is very interesting for those who are investing in the automotive industry: in the second country of the World for its market growth after China, in 2011 were sold more than 2,5 millions of cars and more than 18 millions motor vehicles.
The “First Time Buyers” – those who have yet to buy their first car – are hundreds of… Millions! This great market is still on the starting blocks, with on average 11 cars per 1000 inhabitants (while in Europe there are 512 cars per 1000 inhabitants, 461 in the U.S. and in Brazil 102).
Another potentiality: India (one-billion-and-two-hundred-millions of inhabitants) is the World’s youngest country. The average age is 29 years compared to 37 years in China, and over 50 in Italy; truly the ‘Youngistan’!
The Indian tiger is ready to scratch! Analysts at JD Power estimates that within 5 years India will be the fourth largest market worldwide for sales and production of vehicles.
The Mahindra Reva – in home designed by a team of 300 engineers, multi-graduates – even today it is the best-selling Electric Vehicle in the World, with more than 2,000 sales in Europe and more than 3,000 in Asia. The testimonials are young women managers, engineers and architects rather than scantily dressed or provocative models. A big step ahead if compared to the conservative and male chauvinist image of the western automotive.
Regarding Tata Nano? Eventually, Nano became a best performer in sales, even if it seems affected from some little troubles. During Auto Expo was launched the new CNG version (methane here is widespread), but there was no time to enjoy with the renewed popularity: a new strong competitor has got in the spotlight: the RE60 Bajaj (pronounced baggiàgg, we will hear at this brand again).
In Europe no media, press or blog reported news about this vehicle, except short articles regarding the incredible price lower than 1,500 Euros (25% less than Nano), the ridiculous low consumption (over 40 km with one liter) and the reduced environmental impact – almost like a hybrid car (less than 60gms/km CO2) – with good performance for the city (80 kph).
In 2011, Bajaj Motor has sold in India over 4,500,000 motorcycles and three wheelers, and more than 1,700,000 were exported. Only in December they have registered 472.000 vehicles! Impressive numbers for a reality totally unknown in Europe, right?
On-line sales of cars and motorcycles! Anand Mahindra have shown that in India before buying a car or a motorcycle, 85% of the customers get informed through the Internet. Albert Gallegos of NADA says that in the U.S. the average is 90%. Here, shopping online for cars and motorcycles works well, please have a look to the Bajaj on-line mall!
India a land of contrasts. Beside the multinational reality of Mahindra or Tata, there is also the ultra-local Hindustan Motor that produces and sells one car basically unchanged since 1958, of which more than 4 million are circulating: the Ambassador, confidentially ‘Amby’: the car of Indian Institutions.
The western automotive is sick, while eastern moves forward! In January press correspondents from around the world were at the NAIAS in Detroit. Blogs, press , Web sites have given wide coverage to this event of the western automotive apparently rich, but seriously ill.
No one has written a single word regarding the Auto Expo in New Delhi – visited in 5 days by more than 2.000.000 persons – except to announce the opening of the New Delhi Fiat Café .
In Europe, every day a OEM informs his dealers that “the ugly is yet to come”; nevertheless the system is still snubbing China and India. Yet from these two great Countries have arrived Billions of Euros needed to keep alive Volvo, Jaguar, Ssangyong, Land Rover and who knows who other else (Saab, Opel)? Right here Marchionne developed a 50% joint venture with Tata to build and sell cars with the Fiat brand, and FGA will provide 100,000 diesel engines to Maruti-Suzuki.
This is the reason why from FADA starts the ambitious idea of a new great World Dealer Association!
In the Country of Iveco, the recent purchase of 13 Chinese school buses by the municipality of a small town, is the demonstration that ‘the new’ is… moving forward!