Roewe 950 marches into APEC to build brand
Domestic brands saw a ray of sunshine after experiencing a drop in market share for 12 consecutive months. At the same time, Roewe, a domestic auto brand, has made great strides in brand communication. ?
The Roewe 950 was designated for receiving distinguished guests at the 2014 APEC CEO Summit. A total of 20 Roewe 950s were officially delivered to the APEC organizing committee on Oct 20. The designation will make a positive impact in upgrading the image of Roewe and other domestic brands.
This is not the first time that the Roewe 950 has made an appearance at an international event. The model has been designated at the national two sessions, APEC Ministerial Meeting in 2014 and Nanjing Youth Olympic Games. The popularity at the APEC CEO Summit not only showed off the Roewe 950’s image as a high-end official business vehicle, but also verified the SAIC’s unique and high-end market brand development path.
Popularity at APEC CEO Summit
It’s public knowledge that the APEC CEO Summit is an important site to promote trade, investment and cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region. It is also a top summit for leaders of APEC economies to discuss important affairs and promote trade liberalization and economic cooperation.
The APEC CEO Summit will be held at the China National Convention Center from Nov 8-10, and the vehicle delivery ceremony will be held on Oct 20 in Beijing. The SAIC’s Roewe 950 will be delivered to the APEC organizing committee at the ceremony.
The vehicle model can take the summit as an opportunity to show leaders of various countries its strength in appearance, interiors, dynamics, safety, science and technology. It was also the first Chinese vehicle to make an appearance at the Paris Motor Show.
Sure enough, the Roewe 950 didn’t win the honor by luck. As SAIC’s second-generation brand-new flagship product, the model followed Roewe’s development path featuring a high starting point, internationalization and crossover, and has reached high standards in technology, R&D and after-sales services. Combination of the Roewe 950’s TGI intelligent direct injection engine and CONTI GEAR six-speed manu-matic transmission not only brings down engine noise but also smoothly completes power take-off. An advanced chassis suspension system and newly-designed suspension geometry can effectively absorb most vibration and road noise, offering driver and passenger comfort. In addition, the Roewe 950’s spacious interior and noise reduction performance are twice as good as mainstream German and Japanese vehicles at the B-plus market, which earned itself the name of the model for chief executive.
The Roewe 950 has sponsored many high-profile events worldwide and has fully proven its high-end product strength and low-profile and pragmatic image among leaders, politicians and businessmen from various APEC members. The model has deepened its brand image as a Chinese high-end brand and offers a new development path for its peers.
Independent development path
Unlike most independent brands that chose to start in the low-end market and work their way up, Roewe was the first of its kind in China to start in the medium and high-end market. After getting wide recognition and establishing a high-end independent brand image, SAIC Motor Passenger Vehicle’s independent brand has also managed to build a brand development path featuring a high starting point, internationalization and crossover ability.
Undoubtedly, it takes more than just the Roewe 950 to prove that Roewe’s upstream independent brand development path is successful. Roewe insists on a distinctive development path because it’s confident for that fact that in addition to the Roewe 950, the SUV Roewe W5 has also achieved a lot in the service vehicle market.
In May, 2014, a total of 200 Roewe W5s were used for special and armed police patrol for the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games. In 2013, the General Administration of Customs purchased 150 Roewe W5s for official operation. From 2012 to 2013, the Shanghai public security bureau’s swat team purchased more than 70 Roewe W5s. In 2012, Hunan public security department bought more than 100 Roewe W5s for emergency communications. In addition, Roewe W5 has been used as a professional vehicle for remote area interview by the CPC Publicity Department and logistics for China Disabled Persons Federation.
Under the background where independent brands are in recession overall, Roewe’s distinctive development path is worth thinking: whether independent brand should slowly seek for breakthrough after taking root at the low-end market when it is competing with JV brand.
The JV and independent brands were basically at peace and didn’t interfere with each other before China fully went on fast growth track. JV brand focused on medium and high-end markets, while independent brand mainly targeted the low end of auto market. Both sides enjoyed rapid development. After 2008, as the world's largest car market, China has seen accelerating entry of various auto brands. The increasing competition has prompted JV brand to strengthen investment in low-emission and low-cost models, which marked the head-on collision between the two parties.
Perhaps, Roewe’s development path can provide some experience for independent brands. It insists on starting with medium and high-end markets and achieving international high standard, and avoids the detour of development first and treatment afterwards.