Audi has announced it will start local assembly of the Audi A6 in India from the autumn of 2007.

The cars will be assembled at Skoda Auto India in Aurangabad, in the west of the country. Future workers will be trained in Ingolstadt. Around 300 cars will be assembled in the first full year of production, 2008.

In a statement Audi said this step is the first part of a major new sales strategy targeting emerging markets. In addition to establishing assembly in the country it will also expand its dealer network to at least eight exclusive dealerships in major cities. At the moment there are just three Audi dealers, in Mumbai, Bangalore and Delhi.

Ralph Wyler, head of sales and marketing for Audi, said, "India is a one of the most important future growth markets for Audi. Our aim is to be the leading premium car brand in the country." He added that Audi is planning to sell around 3,000 cars a year  in India by 2010. That would not make it the market leader, but would give it a strong market position.

Customer satisfaction is an important theme of Audi's marketing strategy for India. It will invest in after-sales by setting up a training centre. A part of this will be to generate some specialist positions in aluminium expertise, to deal with aluminium bodies.

Audi currently sells the A4, A6, A8 and the Q7 in India. During 2006 it will have delivered around 300 cars to customers there. In 2008, it aims to sell 1,000 cars.

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