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Market share more important than volume to Aston Oz

Be gone: Aston Martin’s flagship Vanquish S coupe will arrive in Australian showrooms with a $489,950 pricetag, while the drop-top version (left) will wear a $526,950 sticker price.

More sales expected in 2017 as Aston launches Vanquish S and special Vantage S

28 Mar 2017

ASTON Martin is expecting local sales of its supercars to rise this year as the brand rolls out its special Vantage S Red Bull Racing Edition and flagship Vanquish S at a unique preview event held at its currently under-development new Melbourne showroom.

However, Aston Martin Asia Pacific president Patrik Nilsson told GoAuto at the media unveiling that market share was a more important figure than outright volume for the British supercar-builder.

“Market share is everything for us, when it comes to measuring a market,” he said. “Market share in Australia is always really, really high. It means that we are competing with our home market, the UK.

“I’d say outside the UK, Australia and New Zealand are both fighting for the second spot, so it’s the second-highest market share.

“I think it (the local market) still does great. When we look at the quality of the market and we see ‘are we doing well?’ or ‘are we doing bad?’ we always look at market share.” Last year, Aston Martin sold 115 vehicles – broken down as 103 coupes and convertibles (a 7.4 per cent market share in the sportscars over $200,000 category) and 12 sedans (a 2.1 per cent share in the large car over $100,000 market) – which was an 11.5 per cent drop over its 2015 haul of 130 cars.

However, Mr Nilsson explained the drop was due to customers waiting for the arrival of the DB11 as waiting lists currently stretch out to nine months and into 2018.

For the first two months of 2017, the British marque has found 25 new homes for its vehicles – a 19 per cent jump year-on-year – placing it third behind Lamborghini (28) and Ferrari (26), but ahead of compatriot supercar builder McLaren (19).

Mr Nilsson said he is “sure” 2017 sales will top 2016 on the back of the new DB11 grand tourer, as well as the two new vehicles debuting at the event, but revealed the existing five-dealer Australian network would be enough to satisfy increased demand.

“I think we’re fine in Australia now, we’ve got five points here,” he said. “The key aspect is to have the right dealers that take care of the customers, who are doing the right investments to make sure they are ready for the future.

“I’m confident we have the right dealers.

“So that’s where we’re focussing now, we don’t want to build volume – sometimes other car companies will attempt to do that – we don’t want to build volume by just adding dealers because it works for a year, but then you have a bit of a hangover after that as well.

“You know clients won’t necessarily get the best service, so no, I’m happy as it is.” In addition to the DB11, the Formula 1-inspired Vantage S models will also contribute to a Aston’s 2017 sales total and are available in V8 and V12 guise, with a $259,995 driveaway asking price for the former and a $422,770 before on-roads cost for the latter.

While power remains unchanged in the atmo V8 (313kW/470Nm) and V12 (421kW/620Nm), the special edition Vantage cars will come standard in a Mariana Blue finish with contrasting red highlights throughout the front grille and fender strakes, as well as yellow brake callipers, as an homage to the Red Bull Racing F1 livery.

If Mariana Blue is not to your tastes, the Vantage S Red Bull Racing Edition can also be had in gloss Tungsten Silver and all versions are fitted with a front splitter, rear diffuser, grille and side strakes finished in carbon-fibre.

Inside, the vehicles feature Red Bull Racing headrest embroidery, a leather steering wheel with 12 o’clock accent stripe and carbon-fibre dashboard inlays.

Only 17 units will be made available to Australian and New Zealand customers, and each will carry a signature from either Aussie Daniel Ricciardo or Dutch Max Verstappen – both of which are Red Bull Racing F1 drivers.

The British marque also used the occasion to host its Vanquish S for the first time on Australian soil, which will carry a $489,950 cost for the coupe and a $526,950 price for the convertible Volante.

The 5.9-litre V12-powered Vanquish S produces 444kW of power and 630Nm of torque, enabling the super coupe to accelerate from zero to 100km/h in 3.5 seconds.

A carbon-fibre front splitter and rear diffuser come as standard, while bonnet vents, mirror caps, grille, door handles and roof panel can also be optioned in the lightweight material.

Moving inside, occupants are treated to a quilted leather interior, as well as a 100W Bang & Olufsen 13-speaker sound system, digital radio, Bluetooth, USB connectivity and Apple CarPlay-enabled infotainment system.

Deliveries for the Vantage S Red Bull Racing Edition will start from the second quarter this year, while customers of the Vanquish can look forward to their vehicles arriving in April.

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