Mahindra increases presence in South Africa auto market

Mahindra South Africa on Tuesday said it has increased dealerships in the country and launched new models including from the SsangYong stable that helped it sharply increase its sales last year.
Sales of the company's Mahindra and SsangYong products rocketed by 118 per cent in the passenger cars and light commercial vehicle (LCV) segments, it said.
"We are very proud of our achievements in 2012 as it was a very busy period for us as we added in SsangYong products to our line-up in April," said Mahindra SA CEO Ashok Thakur.
"We also launched new models and expanded our dealer footprint to 59 dealers, which includes several outside the borders of South Africa."
There is a high level of acceptance for the Mahindra and SsangYong brands in a market where the company has been active for only nine years, Thakur added, citing a turnaround strategy which put the company in a strong position for growth after the economic woes of 2008/9.
He said the introduction of new Mahindra models as well as a number of special editions of existing models heightened awareness of the two brands.
"In addition, big improvements have been made in supporting and training the dealers to ensure better parts availability and to improve all levels of customer satisfaction in terms of both sales and after-sales service," Thakur said.
Mahindra invested in a new Training and Development centre during the year.
"What all this means is that Mahindra SA is determined to become an increasingly significant player in the Southern African region," said Thakur.
"We believe the combination of upcoming new and revised models, a growing and strengthening dealer network with an expanding area of responsibility, as well as a motivated management team we are very confident about the future of our company," he added.
Mahindra SA is a fully-owned subsidiary of Mahindra & Mahindra, India.

The company has also expanded into other sub-Saharan countries, currently exporting vehicles to Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, Swaziland and Namibia. 

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