McLaren all set to grow its footprint in India

With the inauguration of its first Indian dealership, the British brand is now looking at increasing its activity and presence in India.

By Sergius Barretto, Autocar India calendar 18 Nov 2022 Views icon5208 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp

McLaren recently inaugurated its first showroom in India and took the opportunity to unveil the 765LT Spider, adding to the GT and 720S line-up that it already began selling here after a soft launch earlier this year. The British marque will also soon launch the Artura, its first hybrid, which is set to arrive at the start of 2023.

Beyond products, the company is also planning to ramp up its activities in India, speaking to Autocar India at the inauguration, Paul Harris, McLaren managing director, APAC and China, said “We are equally balanced with our market share in the US and Europe but we see the growth opportunity in Asia at the moment.” And with a local dealer now in place, the brand has quite a few activities already lined up.

Seven city roadshow on the cards for McLaren
It will also soon kick off a seven-city roadshow where customers and fans alike can get up close and personal with the cars, including the limited-run 765LT Spider. The brand currently operates out of just one outlet in India and does acknowledge that it needs to spread. However, Harris says the priority is to get the start right, “we would never say never to anywhere else, but we would like to keep this the centre of the brand experience here, get it right and then take it around.”

Lalit Choudary, executive chairman of Infinity Cars, added, “the current mandate is clearly to get this first step absolutely right, and right now we have the McLaren experience here, the right kind of demo car selection, and McLaren trained staff, including flying doctors.” However, Choudary didn’t rule out expanding either, saying “but of course we can spread out in due course, depending on volume.” Thus, for now, the company will operate out of Mumbai only.

Brand Experiences for McLaren customers
McLaren is also keenly offering its ‘Brand Experiences’ to customers in India, where current and potential customers can experience McLaren’s range of cars on racetracks around the world at specifically designed and run track days or weekends. It also conducts an Arctic ice driving experience and Matthias Weiskopf, McLaren’s regional market manager, said that four Indian customers have already signed up for the February 2023 event in Finland.

McLaren is also eager to bring the track experience to India, with Choudary adding that he is very keenly cheering the development of the many racetracks in India.  

McLaren keen to expand fan base
Harris also acknowledged that, while the McLaren brand is very well known within its customer base, he is keen to expand the fan base here, adding, “Customers are important but what also builds the brand are fans, and there's such a massive population in India, I think that we have to, from my global perspective, pay attention to that, that's why we're here.”

Merchandise will also play a part here and Harris acknowledged that fact, saying “currently our merchandise is handled by a third party, so that’s where we are currently, but I do see a significant commercial opportunity with this.” While the company did not outline any specific retail or online sales plan for its branded merchandise and partnership products, the Mumbai dealership, however, does have on sale some of the company’s merchandise.


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