(L-R) Mr. Sachin Tendulkar and Mr. Vikram Pawah, President, BMW Group India with the all-new BMW 5 Series
BMW India launched the newest version of its flagship luxury sedan, the 5 Series, on Thursday in Mumbai.
The 5 Series has been key for BMW India, accounting for almost 30 percent of its nationwide sales over the last decade despite stiff competition from competitors including the Audi A6, Volvo S90, Jaguar XF and the recently unveiled Mercedes-Benz E-Class.
Even though BMW India sold just 7,861 cars in 2016, compared with 13,231 units sold by luxury rival Mercedes-Benz, it hopes that the seventh generation of the 5 Series will spur sales growth for the automaker in the emerging Indian market.
“The all-new BMW 5 Series is a winner and our best foot forward,” said Vikram Pawah, president of BMW Group India, noting that growth is the company’s top priority.
The sedan, which will be produced in Chennai, is equipped with numerous cutting-edge technological features. A ‘Remote Control Parking’ feature allows the driver to use the car’s touchscreen key to manoeuvre the car into parking spaces while standing outside the vehicle. The touchscreen key also displays information such as service reminders, cabin temperature, mileage range and fuel level. The car also features ‘Gesture Control’, which lets users control numerous car functions through hand motions, as well as a wireless charging facility for mobile phones.
“The BMW 5 Series is the most successful business sedan on the planet. It brings together sporting agility, presence, and comfort like no other vehicle,” said Pawah. “It promises to remain the most successful business sedan in the market.”
Former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar drove one of the new 5 Series models into the arena and joined Pawah on stage. “The muscularity of this car, the power, the agility, just impressed me,” said Tendulkar, who has been driving the car in London.
The car comes in three design schemes, Sport Line, Luxury Line, and M Sport, depending on customers’ preferences. All three designs are available with diesel engines and the Sport Line is available with a petrol engine as well. The Sport Line starts at Rs 49.9 lakh, the Luxury Line at 53.60 lakh, and the M Sport at 61.30 lakh. All three variants will be available at BMW dealerships nationwide starting July 1.
Since entering the Indian auto market in 2006, BMW had invested Rs 1,250 crore in its subsidiaries in India and has plan for continued growth and investment. By 2018, BMW plans to increase the number of dealerships it operates in India to 50 from the existing 41 facilities.