Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ouch: Americans More Willing to Buy Chinese Cars than Indian Cars

Remember the Hyundai Excel?  Surely Hyundai hopes that you have long forgotten that sad first chapter of their US success story.  It’s taken over twenty years of hard work and aggressive marketing for the Korean brand to gain general acceptance here.

Results from GfK Automotive’s Barometer of Automotive Awareness and Imagery Study shows that only 38% of surveyed Americans would consider buying a Chinese car.  Surprisingly (to Mahindra Planet anyway) only 30% would consider buying an Indian car.

It’s likely that most Americans do not realize that China and India already have an automotive presence in the US through acquired brands (China has Volvo owned by Geely and India has Jaguar and Land Rover owned by Tata).  And it is easy to forget that the mighty Japanese brands once faced similar challenges when they first arrived on US shores decades ago.

Clearly, the Mahindra brand would face many challenges beyond their damaged credibility among US auto enthusiasts.  Poor quality or customer service would force them into an even harder uphill battle.

Entering the US with Korean brand, Ssangyong, certainly has to look more appealing to Mahindra these days.  Thanks in part, to the Hyundai Excel.

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