Blog: Premium brands
Dave Leggett | 1 November 2005
That book (previous blog posting) on premium brands did indeed provide some food for thought on the dynamics of the upper reaches of the car market and the nature of premium brands. The distinction the authors make between 'luxury' and 'premium' is an especially interesting one I think. I'll try and do some sort of review of the book later this week and I might try and get hold of the authors also. Some of what they have to say about Lexus, for example, might well deserve a wider audience.
The authors also put the actions of the innovating German premium brands into broader perspective too, seeing their business strategies as a successful reaction to the lean production philosophy that had such widespread currency in the auto industry in the early '90s. Mind you, I'm still left wondering how large a premium brand should be, ideally. I guess there's a further drill-down level of analysis that involves looking in great detail at each company's product price-points, volumes, margins, costs and used market residuals. But how far can these guys carry on growing and at what point do premium and 'volume' start to merge? I see Audi is now plotting some serious future growth that stresses the brand's premium attributes. About time, really. See below link.
Anyway, I'm off today to try one of BMW's premium products - the M6. I'm part of a journalists' trip to the south of France (Nimes), so we get to drive the car around on some nice roads with accompanying scenic countryside. Five litres of V10 engine putting out 500bhp is probably providing just about enough power for me I think.
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