Dacia: A Brand on the Move
20th September, 2007
With over 110,000 vehicles sold in 47 countries in the first half of 2007, Dacia’s business grew 8%, whilst continuing to expand internationally with 54% of sales recorded outside Romania.
With the addition of Logan MCV and Logan Van, Dacia offers an even richer, original line-up which is reaping increasing success on the mature markets of Western Europe. The range is also particularly well suited to the needs of markets in the so-called Euromed region (Bulgaria, Romania, Russia and CIS, Turkey, North Africa), on the lookout for modern, robust and reliable models.
In 2007, two of the brand’s production facilities, Pitesti in Romania and Casablanca in Morocco, increased their output to fuel this growth.
Constantly improving results Dacia continued to grow thanks to the fame of the Logan name and a line-up that was enriched by the arrival of newcomers Logan MCV and Logan Van in 2007. By the end of June, Logan accounted for 60% of Dacia sales (74,928 units in 47 markets), Logan MCV for 35% (32,943 in 29 markets) and Logan Van for 5% (3,849 in Romania and Bulgaria). Western Europe, where 32,889 units were sold, experienced the fastest growth rate – 63.3%. Dacia now holds a 1.38% share of the French passenger car market with nearly 15,000 vehicles sold and growth of 30.8%. It has now broken in to the Top 15 brands at number 13, after finishing sixteenth at end of 2006. In Germany, a big market for estates, Dacia sales tripled in volume in the first half of 2007 compared to the same period in 2006. The leap was driven by the February launch of Logan MCV, the brand’s estate model: it accounted for 75% of the 8,319 units sold in the first half of 2007.
In the markets of Eastern Europe, Turkey, and North Africa, Logan saloon remained the motorists’ favourite, while Logan MCV appealed to customers seeking a spacious, versatile vehicle. In those markets, Logan sold 72,257 units, a rise of 4.8%. Logan was again the best-selling car in Morocco with 6,268 units, while in Algeria sales were up 35.6% compared to the first half of 2006, with 5,563 units sold. In Romania, where 250,000 vehicles from across the three-model line-up have been registered since September 2004, Logan saloon led the way in its segment, selling 39,165 units, while Logan MCV was runner-up in the passenger car market with 8,476 units. In the Asia-Africa region, Dacia sold 1,559 vehicles, a rise of 37%.
The Logan family's estate model, Logan MCV, hit the market in Romania and Bulgaria in October 2006, followed by the rest of Europe, Turkey and some North African markets from January 2007. It was extremely well received and now sells better than Logan saloon in Western Europe. Most Logan MCV buyers – 75% of West European and 63% of Central European customers – chose the top equipment levels. The seven-seater, which is designed to cater specifically for the needs of families, has proved a great success, accounting for 35% of sales in Western Europe. In France, meanwhile, the very popular diesel-powered version accounted for 70% of sales. This month will see a new addition to the diesel powertrain range in France and Romania, with the arrival of the 85 hp 1.5 dCi. It will gradually be launched on other markets in the months ahead. This long-awaited engine is particularly well suited to Logan MCV and will no doubt further strengthen the success of this model in the second half of 2007. The Dacia range in Romania has been bolstered by the addition of an LPG version. LPG, liquid petroleum gas, is an alternative to petrol with environmental benefits.
The end of January saw the commercial launch of the small-business version of Logan, the Logan Van. By the end of its first month Logan Van was the top-selling light commercial vehicle in Romania, and it went on to ship 3,671 units between February and the end of June 2007. It now accounts for over half of the light commercial vehicle segment in Romania.
Conquering new markets
On all markets customers continue to be won over by the Logan family fundamentals of simplicity, modernity, robustness and unrivalled value for money. Many people who could previously only afford to buy used vehicles have now purchased their first new car thanks to Logan, a roomy, well-appointed vehicle that is cheap to buy and to run.
In Western Europe, Logan buyers are mainly men whose average age is 52, while Logan MCV,– in particular the seven-seater version – tends to draw a more family-oriented, younger buyer with an average age of 45.
Production facilities evolve as the brand goes from strength to strength
In the first six months of the year 114,443 units were produced in the Dacia plant at Pitesti in Romania and 6,737 in the Somaca plant in Morocco.
Dacia Logan sites have adapted to booming demand on all markets. The Romanian factory has produced nearly 500,000 Logan vehicles since 2004. It will increase its capacity from 235,000 units per annum to 350,000 in 2008. One hundred million euros are being invested in enlarged press shop capacity, a new paint shop, and a bigger body shop and assembly facility. Currently 930 Logan, Logan MCV, and Logan Van vehicles roll-off the production line every day. To meet the high volume of orders, output will be gradually ramped up to 1,000 vehicles a day by the end of the year.
The Somaca plant in Morocco had catered exclusively for the domestic market since it was commissioned in 2005. In 2007 it began exporting Logan to France and Spain. By the end of the year over 5,000 units will have been shipped to Europe. Daily output has risen from 54 to 120 vehicles a day and 300 people have been hired to form a second team of workers.
Sales of Logan MCV will really kick in during the second half of 2007 as the benefits of its launch on European and Euromed markets are felt. In early 2008 a utility truck developed from the Logan platform will be added to the Logan line-up in Romania. The new model will be aimed at business users (the self-employed, tradespeople) and private motorists alike. In keeping with the Dacia Logan pedigree, it offers very competitive value for money.
Meanwhile sales of Logan, marketed under the Renault brand name, continued to grow: they rose 75% in the first half of 2007 (47,281 units).
With 31,031 units sold in the first six months of 2007 Logan was the most popular foreign saloon car in Russia, where it was up 47% compared to 2006 on a market which itself grew 28.8%. The Avtoframos plant in Moscow will double its production capacity to 160,000 units per annum by 2009 to meet market demand and produce a new model.
Since 2007, Renault Logan has been marketed in four new countries – Iran, India, Argentina and Brazil. Initial results are promising. On each market Logan addresses the specific local needs. In India, for example, Renault and its partner Mahindra launched the right-hand drive Logan, while in Brazil Logan has a powertrain that runs on FlexFuel.
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