Head of Bentley in Russia: "Russian clients behave more boldly"

The popularity of premium SUV and the tastes of Russian customers is discussed by the head of the Russian representative office of Bentley, Marco van Alten.
03.07.2018
Forbes
Origin source
Why did competition in the luxury SUV segment so sharply increase?

Such cars give the driver a sense of security, space, a sense of control over the situation. For many, it is important to have a free seat in the cabin, where you can place the whole family, luggage and go on a long trip.

How important are international motor shows for such luxury brands as Bentley?

We are interested in car dealerships in Geneva, Paris, Tokyo, New York, Shanghai, Frankfurt. They are important to us. But basically we try to draw attention to ourselves in other ways by conducting special events for our clients.

Last year, Russia saw an increase in sales of Bentley, which is mainly due to the appearance of the Bentayga model. What do you expect in 2018?

We want to continue to grow sales. The launch of the diesel version of Bentayga in Russia in November 2017 should contribute to this, we also expect the same from the petrol V8, which is already available in Russia. But, of course, do not forget about other models: Mulsanne, Flying Spur and a completely new Continenlal GT.
 
That is, economic problems do not affect sales in Russia in any way?

Our clients are people who have built their careers themselves, they are men and women, with a commercial vein and strategic thinking. They themselves determine how to spend their money. If they need a representative car or they just want to please themselves and their family, they come to us. Russian customers, by the way, are very pragmatic, always weighing all the pros and cons before making a purchase. But the currency fluctuations did not affect our clients in any way. Yes, some decided to wait a few months before buying a new car, but still did not leave the segment.

Do Russian customers have any special preferences?

I like that Russian clients behave more boldly in terms of choosing the color of cars. If you come to the showroom in Switzerland, you will see that everything is gray, blue, green and black. But in Russia people like more vivid options. In general, we can fulfill any legal requests. We chose the shades of the body and the favorite color of the customer's nail polish, and the color of the lipstick, decorated the interiors in the tone of the customers' shirts. Some customers are asked to embroider the engraving with their names or the initials of their family members. Once the buyer asked to embroider wedding vows on sun visors - they gladly fulfilled the order.

Business