Aston Martin Expects China To Become Third-Largest Market

Aston Martin Sold 120 Cars In China Last Year

The $7.2 million Aston Martin One77, only seven of which were available in China (Image: PR)

The $7.2 million Aston Martin One77, only seven of which were available in China (Image: PR)

Fresh off a banner year in which Aston Martin sold 120 cars in China, a more than 50 percent rise over 2009, the British automaker announced this week at Auto Shanghai 2011 that it hopes China will become its third-largest market in coming years. Noting the volatility in Aston Martin’s top two markets, the United States and the United Kingdom, the company’s Chief Commercial Officer Michael Ven Der Sande told First Financial Daily this weekend that he believes the Chinese market could provide a reliable sales anchor.

Currently, Aston Martin has four dealerships in three mainland Chinese cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou), and following its success in China last year, the automaker plans to expand more rapidly in the near future. Additionally, Aston Martin plans to establish a fully owned subsidiary in China this year in order to focus more intently on building its brand in the world’s largest auto market.

According to NetEase, Aston Martin has attracted a considerable amount of attention at this year’s Auto Shanghai, with its limited edition One-77 selling out before the show even commenced, despite its whopping 47 million yuan (US$7.2 million) price tag. From the article (translation by Jing Daily team):

At the Aston Martin kiosk at Auto Shanghai, the most common question heard by attendants is, “Is the One-77 for sale?” Well before the official opening of the show, five limited-edition One-77s had sold out, each of them for 47 million yuan, making them the most expensive cars in the history of Chinese auto shows.

As a very small global luxury auto brand, Aston Martin apparently hopes Auto Shanghai can amplify its voice. Recently, the company built its largest global showroom in Shanghai, and the company now has dealerships in four cities. As Michael Ven Der Sande explained this week, within the next few months, Aston Martin plans to build its network in China and celebrate its fourth anniversary there with a strong expansion.

At Auto Shanghai, Aston Martin also showed off its Cygnet mini-car, which is conceptually similar to Mercedes-Benz’s Smart car. The company is using Auto Shanghai as a way to gauge consumer response to the Cygnet. As an Aston Martin representative said, “If the feedback is very good, then we’ll probably take the Cygnet to the Chinese market in 2012.”



Events, Market Analysis