Toyota studying Indian market to bring in Lexus as CKD
The luxury car market in India has tremendous potential and with the increased purchasing power, a large number of buyers are looking towards luxury car manufacturers for their next car. Manufacturers like Audi, Mercedes Benz and Jaguar are able to sell their cars in decent numbers in the Indian market. This has made Toyota consider the option of bringing in their Lexus brand to India. To keep prices competitive, Toyota is considering the option of bringing the Lexus cars as CKDs. The entry of Lexus brand in India was considered earlier by the parent company Toyota but apparently they didn’t see much scope back then due to slow growth and high import duties.
The automobile sector has seen a slowdown for a while, but the luxury car market has seen a decent growth for the past couple of years. Toyota first planned to introduce the Lexus brand in 2012 but the economic scenario was not good back then. Now however, Toyota has changed its plan and we might see Lexus enter our market soon. The Japanese car manufacturer is able to see the possibilities a luxury car maker has got in the Indian market and Toyota will be vying for a share of in the luxury car segment.
Lexus has earned a strong name in many markets for obvious reasons. Being Toyota’s brand, you know for sure that the products will be absolutely flawless. They go to great lengths to make their cars an absolute delight for the driver and passenger. The brand is a brain trust of visionaries and they keep innovating to give the best to their customers. When it comes to reliability, Toyota products rank the highest, blowing even the Germans and Swedish out of steam.
Unlike manufacturers like BMW, most of their products put passenger comfort and luxury over driving pleasure. It doesn’t mean that Lexus cars are bad to drive but it just means that they are good enough to be a chauffeur driven machine. And in a market like India where we even see chauffeur driven hatchbacks, Lexus would get a lot of love from the rear seat occupants. If the cars are imported as completely build units, they attract taxes up to 160 percent which is huge. That is why Toyota is planning to go for local assembly which would cut down taxes by almost half. Other luxury manufacturers like BMW, Audi and Mercedes Benz are also doing the same.
Toyota has also started assembling the Camry sedan in India only to bring down the costs. With the launch of the Lexus brand in the Indian market, Toyota will be targeting manufacturers like Audi, Mercedes Benz, Jaguar, BMW and Volvo. Toyota has got a 4-5 percent market share right now. The car maker is further trying to boost sales and for that Toyota might launch some new products. One of these products is expected to be a sedan that would sit between the Toyota Etios and Toyota Corolla. This sedan would compete with the segment leader Honda City.