Audi Tired of Losing in the US Sales Race

By: Natalie Anderson

Finally Audi is tired of always being beaten in the US sales race against Lexus and other luxury brands. According to some auto analysts things will change for Volkswagen's subsidiary German luxury automaker if and only if its three-pronged plan to boost sales finally succeeds.
According to a top Audi executive, the automaker plans to increase the number if vehicles it offers, add more exclusive dealers and conduct a more aggressive form of marketing scheme that will boost brand image. They plan that aside from the usual type of advertisements they will also strive for a larger internet presence.
Johan de Nysschen, executive vice president of Audi of America Inc., in a speech at the Automotive News World Congress said that he is frustrated over the lack of the automaker to gain success in the United States. Last year Audi sold 90,611 vehicles in the United States while Lexus a much younger brand sold 322,434 units.
De Nysschen further stated that in order to get the attention of the American buyers it will start acting more like an American Brand. "Understatement is inherent in Audi's brand DNA," he said. "It is who we are. It is our expression of European luxury. Yet we think it's time for Audi of America to stop being so understated and a little more American in telling our brand story."

To help the German automaker implement the changes that it desires, Audi has hired a new ad agency as announced by de Nysschen. The agency, Venables, Bell & Partners is developing a campaign concept for the German automaker and scheduled to debut in April along with the new TT sports car.

According to de Nysschen, "We've challenged our new agency to build on the brand's history and DNA for product excellence. We want to make a compelling argument to America's discerning luxury buyers that they should consider Audi."
The German automaker's growth plan is part of a much larger strategy. It should be noted that the automaker was able to sell 905,000 vehicles worldwide in 2006. The company's long-term plan includes increasing its worldwide sales to 1.4 million units hopefully through 2015. It is looking into the great potentials of emerging markets like China and India to help in achieving its goals.

In terms of products, Volkswagen's German subsidiary is in the midst of launching nineteen vehicles in the United States from 2005 to 2007. Audi also plan to launch their R8 sports car to compete with Porsche 911 a midsized A5 coupe and new TT. De Nysschen further added that they are looking at a small luxury SUV and plans to use diesel engines extensively in North America.
"We've addressed quality and reliability problems that dogged us in the '90s and taken major steps to become segment leaders in quality," he said. "Our mission and aspiration in the U.S. market is, quite simply, to be recognized as a Tier 1 premium brand in the same light as Mercedes-Benz and BMW, as we already are in Europe and elsewhere around the world."
About Audi

Audi AG is one of the major subsidiaries of Europe's largest automaker, Volkswagen, together with Bentley, Skoda, Lamborghini, SEAT, and the brand Volkswagen itself. Volkswagen's acquisition and redevelopment of Audi together with other subsidiary brands has helped the German automaker to emerge as true global force in the auto industry. Volkswagen is not only renowned in terms of quality automobiles but also for its top-of-the-line auto parts like its array of .

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