Evaluating new models for Indian market, says BMW
German luxury carmaker BMW is evaluating options of launching new products, including electric vehicles, in India in next few years, a top official said on Thursday. The company, which on Thursday introduced two models—all new sports activity vehicle X7 and new version of 7 Series sedan—in the country, however added that the new product launches would depend on market conditions.
“We have around five products planned for the coming years. Which one of those is better for India or at what time the launch will happen, I don’t know,” BMW Group India President Hans-Christian Baertels told PTI. He further said, “ideally, we want to have them all and early but we will have to see a business case, see an environment that allows it to happen..and that is what we are basically evaluating on a weekly basis.”
The number of models would go up significantly if the company’s global portfolio of hybrid models is also included, Baertels noted. When asked if the company planned to launch electric vehicles in the country, he said, “of course. In Europe people have accepted electric cars and now we are witnessing the same thing happening in India...our policy is to be ready and we have electric vehicles in our global portfolio...we are now in the process of figuring out which model makes sense and by when it could be introduced etc.”
Depending upon the market dynamics and the government policies, the company would be ready to “switch the button” and be ready in no time, he added. Terming the April-June quarter as tough, Baertels said the period did not work out as per the company’s sales expectations. “We are still swimming against the current. The numbers we planned (to sell) were very optimistic so we have tried to remain calm and this (slowdown) is not going to stay forever,” he added. The company launched its flagship sports activity vehicle X7 in India on Thursday priced at Rs 98.9 lakh (ex-showroom).
It also introduced the all new version of its 7 Series sedan with petrol and diesel engines priced in the range of Rs 1.22-1.34 crore. Besides, the company has introduced a plug-in-hybrid variant of the 7 Series sedan priced at Rs 1.65 crore (petrol) and Rs 2.42 crore (diesel). BMW India said it will locally produce diesel variant of X7 from its Chennai plant while importing the petrol version as a completely built-up unit (CBU). Both petrol and diesel versions of the model are priced at Rs 98.9 lakh each. “The first ever X7 opens up a brand new dimension in luxurious driving pleasure and is designed to elevate every moment of the journey,” Baertels said.
The new model is the largest sports activity vehicle ever built by BMW. The petrol variant produces 340 horsepower (hp) and accelerates from 0-100 km/hr in just 6.1 seconds. The diesel version produces 265 hp and accelerates from 0-100 km/hr in just seven seconds. The height of X7 could be increased or decreased by air suspension. Other features include five zone automatic air conditioning. Baertels said the 7 Series sedan is also being introduced as a plug-in hybrid variant in India for the first time “symbolising BMW’s pioneering lead in future mobility”.
Recently, BMW launched the new 7 Series sedan facelift and the all-new X7 SUV in India on Thursday. It is to be noted that new 7 Series sedan facelift has received one of the biggest updates since the car was launched in India back in 2016. BMW's flagship models –7 Series sedan facelift and the all-new X7 SUV – has finally gone on sale in India from Thursday onwards. It is to be noted that the BMW 7 Series sedan facelift has been launched at Rs 1.22 crore going all the way up to Rs 2.42 crore (ex-showroom India), while the price of the X7 SUV start at Rs 98.90 lakh, all prices ex-showroom India.
It is worth mentioning here that the X7 is an all-new vehicle to join at the top of BMW's SUV line-up while the 7 Series has been in the market for a long time and the new model is a facelift of the outgoing car.
(With inputs from PTI)