In Conversation With Steffen Knapp, Head, Volkswagen Passenger Cars India: Watch Video
In order to understand the market sentiment from the point of a giant auto manufacturer like Volkswagen, we got in touch with Steffen Knapp, Head, Volkswagen Passenger Cars India.
Steffen Knapp, Head, Volkswagen Passenger Cars India. (Photo: Manav Sinha/News18.com)
The entire automotive industry in India is going through a lot, be it the new safety norms coming in, the new emission regulations, revised tax structures, talks over the scrappage police, incentivizing the electric vehicles and the list goes on. As a result, there is a steep decrease in terms of sales clocked by both passenger and commercial vehicles alike and in order to understand the market sentiment from the point of a giant auto manufacturer like Volkswagen, we got in touch with Steffen Knapp, Head, Volkswagen Passenger Cars India.
In our conversation, Steffen talks about the shift towards BS-VI saying that in order to achieve that target, “It’s a big investment for the whole industry as we have jumped one step in between. All these investments will have to be covered by one or the other. You really have to see what the consequences for the industry are and also as at the end of the day you have to live with the consequences.” Adding, “I don’t see a lot of investment from the government. The majority is being covered by the automotive industry and subsequently, also then partially, by the customer.”
On being asked about where does he see the new emission norm steering the industry towards, Steffen said, “Diesels will most likely go out of the market in most of the categories because it simply doesn’t make a business case for a customer to purchase these vehicles. We are assuming a cost increase of Rs 1.5 lakh (per BS-VI compliant diesel vehicle).”
However, Steffen also approves of the steps being taken towards revising the minimum safety requirements in cars saying that it is a “right move” as “safety is an essential part of individual mobility. Fortunately, I can say that Volkswagen has nothing to change because, from the starting point, this (safety) is ingrained in our DNA.”
That’s not it, Steffen also spills the beans on what their future strategy is for the Indian market and how SUVs are going to dominate in the coming years, and more. You can watch our conversation in the video below.
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