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Benz expects to more than double AMG volume in Oz

A-grade grenade: Well-heeled Australians are mad for the products of Mercedes-Benz hot-shop AMG and the small A45 will mean even more Aussies can afford one.

More affordable A45 and CLA45, product renewal to double Aussie AMG sales

Mercedes-Benz logo7 Dec 2012

MERCEDES-BENZ is expecting to at least double Australian sales volume of high-performance AMG models in the near future.

Australia’s position as the world’s strongest AMG market on a per-capita basis and a cascade of new products – including more affordable, smaller four-cylinder cars – could mean sales soar to 2500 units annually.

Mercedes-Benz Cars Australia/Pacific (MBA) managing director Horst Von Sanden said 2012 is already guaranteed to be a record year for AMG in this country, with sales beyond 1100 units.

Mr Von Sanden said there has been a 50 per cent increase in sales of its most popular model, the C63, and the new ML63 SUV has overtaken the E63 as second most popular breathed-on Benz.

However that could change once the heavily-facelifted E-Class and hot E63 variants arrive in Australia next year.

An AMG version of the all-new GL-Class seven-seat SUV will also rumble into town in 2013The hot S63 limousine should also hit the Australian market before the end of next year.

But it is the all-wheel-drive A45 that will arrive in the second half of next year with a 245kW/400Nm four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine and expected $80,000 price tag that will be the driving force for sales growth.

4 center imageFrom top: Mercedes-Benz Australia managing director Horst von Sanden C63 AMG ML63 AMG.

Due shortly afterwards will be the CLA45 version of Mercedes’ new coupe-styled compact sedan, also due in the latter half of 2013.

Mr Von Sanden said the arrival of these vehicles means MBA is “pretty confident without exaggeration that in the near future our AMG volume will double if not more”.

“With the A45 we enter into the AMG segment with a price tag where people who so far could only dream about AMG can actually afford one and we believe many of them will try to buy one,” he said.

“We will continue to focus on AMG because the market loves AMG and secondly it helps us to keep our brand fresh and aggressive and last but not least it is pretty good business for us.”

In addition to buying more AMG products per capita than anywhere else, the Australian appetite for the fruits of Affalterbach places this country between fifth and sixth in the global league table for overall volume.

For comparison, Australia holds 13th position in the world for standard Mercedes-Benz passenger cars.

Speaking with GoAuto at a Mercedes-Benz event prior to the Sydney motor show in October, MBA senior product and sales planning manager Volker Schneider said Australian customers would “rather buy a C63 or E63 than an S-Class if they had the money”.

Mr Schneider also attributed AMG’s success here to Australia’s long history of home-grown V8 muscle cars and a preference for performance models.

He said AMG represents the next level for a successful person wanting to move up from an HSV or FPV, and that compared with many European markets, Australians who do well for themselves are not afraid to show it with the things they buy.

In recognition of AMG’s success in Australia and to celebrate 45 years of its official tuning arm, MBA wheeled out three one-off AMG specials at the Sydney motor show, plus a highly exclusive CLS63 Edition 1 variant of the new Shooting Brake.

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