The Strength of the Chinese Auto Market is The Reason Why Aston Martin is Launching the DBX Crossover
When demand is this high, how can an automaker say no?by Kirby Garlitos, on
Aston Martin is developing the DBX SUV for no other reason than the booming SUV market in China. Company president and CEO Andy Palmer made that clear in a conversation with Wards Auto. According to Palmer, the DBX SUV may not even be on the table if not for the Chinese market.
Aston Martin is booming in the country, and that momentum is what’s spearheading the development of the DBX SUV.
If you need any more proof on how important the Chinese market is to automakers like Aston Martin, look no further than the mere existence of the Aston Martin DBX. “The DBX SUV exists because of the booming China market,” Palmer told Wards Auto. “Would Aston Martin have done an SUV if not for the China market? Probably not.”
The Chinese market’s importance to the auto industry can’t be quantified. It’s the biggest market in the world with the most diverse customers. Whether you’re a mainstream manufacturer like Toyota or a purveyor of exotic machines like Aston Martin, there’s a vast number of segments in China that can be tapped.
The market is especially crucial for a luxury brand like Aston Martin that doesn’t build cars on sheer volume but relies more on selling a luxurious lifestyle to its customers. Not everyone can afford to buy an Aston Martin so it’s not like the company can just set up shop anywhere in the world and expect business to boom, which is exactly what’s happening in China. Aston Martin is booming in the country, and that momentum is what’s spearheading the development of the DBX SUV.
To keep that momentum rolling, Aston’s also tapping into local talent to help sell the company’s identity to the market. In addition to having a dedicated local staff on the ground that knows the pulse of Chinese consumer tastes, the British automaker is also launching partnerships in the country, most recently with The College of Design and Innovation at Shanghai’s Tongji University. Part of that venture, according to Palmer, is to “anticipate the color trends of the Chinese market.”
The arrival of the DBX SUV could help push Aston Martin over the top
The local involvement has played a huge part in helping Aston Martin establish an identity in China. That identity has helped the company grow its business, which saw sales increase 89 percent in 2017 compared to its numbers from the previous year. The luxury performance car is still a small segment, but it speaks to Aston’s growing popularity that it’s treated in equal terms with Ferrari in China.
The arrival of the DBX SUV could help push Aston Martin over the top. This early, the automaker is already expecting the SUV to help spearhead its sales numbers in China to account for one-third of its expected global sales once the SUV launches in 2019.
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Source: Wards Auto