Mercedes-Benz launches M Class in Indian market

German luxury car maker Mercedes-Benz, facing a lose in market share in India, Tuesday launched its third generation sports utility vehicle M-Class, also plans to assemble 8-9 models over the next few years.

“At the start of this year, we had promised to introduce exciting new models into the market. We are proud to present today the new M-Class,” Peter Honegg, managing director and chief executive, Mercedes-Benz, said while launching M Class.

The new third generations sport vehicle features customised settings for engine performance, automatic transmission, anti-lock braking system, electronic stability programme and electronic traction system.

This latest model will be available at priced Rs.56.9 lakh, a cut of nearly 15 per cent from its previous editions and will take on BMW X5 and Audi Q5.

In 2012, share value of Benz has downed by 20 per cent, but as per Honegg, the company expects a boost in sales after the launch A-Class and B-Class in the market that will come very soon.

However, the company already assembles C, E and S class cars at its Chakan plant with a move to levy a lower import duty of up to 30%.

“We expect to become number luxury sellers of luxury cars in India by 2020, the growth will get a boost when the compact models enter the Indian market,” Honegg told reporters, around Rs 350 crore will plan to invest in setting up assembly lines and the paint shop.

Around 7,500 units of Mercedes-Benz were sold in 2011 with hit of 30 per cent growth, but its major competition is with BMW that in 2011 led the market with sales of over 9,400 cars.

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