April 30th 2017

Business / News

After decades of sloth, American cars taking Kenya by storm

The brand is expected to step up competition for German car manufacturer Porsche, which reported strong sales of its sporty models since launching operations last year.

By Free Press Reporternewsdesk@kenyafreepress.comTuesday, 31 May 2016 09:59 EAT

The brand is expected to step up competition for German car manufacturer Porsche, which reported strong sales of its sporty models since launching operations last year.

Brand marketing

In March 2015, the regional head of marketing at Ford Motor Company, Mark Kaufman, announced that the Mustang would be available at CMC in the first quarter of 2016, not many could see the growth.

The Mustang is among five new Ford models that CMC will be launching starting this year, with the dealer racing to boost its product range in the competitive new vehicles market.

The Mustang is one of Americas best-selling cars, and its image has graced so many Hollywood movies.

Like with most Ford brands, the Mustang comes with big engines; the smallest currently in production is the 2.3 Litre ecoBoost. Those with deep pockets can go for the 5 liter Mustang GT version.

Ford’s fortunes have also been helped by local policy. Since 2014, the government has allowed Kenyans in the US to import any vehicle of their choice duty free.

The new policy was announced by President Uhuru Kenyatta during the 2014 United Nations General Assembly. At a meeting with Kenyans

he announced that Kenyans living abroad will be allowed to bring in right-hand-drive models duty-free starting November 2014.

The President made the announcement when he met Kenyans living in New York, US, at a reception on Thursday night.

However, there was a delay as the East African Community (EAC) had to be consulted.

President Kenyatta said the consultations with the EAC will be held in January next year but a temporary arrangement has been made, which is set to begin in November.

Under the program, those who live in countries like the United States, where vehicles are left-hand, will be allowed to import a right-hand vehicle of similar value duty-free.

 

In December 2015, High-end brands with a presence in Kenya such as Hugo Boss, Little Red, English Point Marina, Bombardeir, Georgio Armani and RMA Motors (sellers of Land Rover and Jaguar vehicles) have opened an office in Nairobi under the Luxury Network, a private consortium of globally reputable products.

The Luxury Network International is targeting Kenya’s burgeoning middle class. The Network works closely with members constituting  luxury brands and service providers to develop brand awareness and explore business development opportunities.

Luxury Network has 30 offices globally and over 500 luxury brand members.

Kenya's new car sales increased by 12.8 per cent in 2015, according to data from the Kenya Motor Industry Association, KMI. While General Motors, whose Isuzu buses are the highest selling new vehicles in Kenya, accounted for 6,575 of the 19,524 new vehicle sales, CMC Motors, which is now part of Al-Futtaim Group from the United Arab Emirates, saw a big growth in sales of the Ford brands such as Ranger, Everest and Focus.

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