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HOLDEN has revealed it is aiming to capture a 10 per cent share in Australia’s new-car market, up from its current 7.1 per cent standing, but executive director of marketing Mark Harland told GoAutoNews Premium that there is no expected time period on the increase.

“We believe that with what we have, and with what’s coming in terms of product – Equinox (mid-size SUV), next-generation Commodore and Arcadia (large SUV) – we will have, if not the best, then certainly one of the best showrooms in the world,” he said.

“Certainly for General Motors but also for some of our competitors as well.

“I think all of us think that we should be targeting 10 per cent as a market share when we have such a world-class product range.

“I don’t have a specific date but I think it is what we all are shooting for – 10 per cent and to be one of the top automotive brands in Australia.”

Mr Harland was asked what happens to Holden sales when the three main cars – made in Australia and representing 29 per cent of the brand’s sales – leave the Holden showrooms in October.Holden Commodore

“Fair question,” he said. “We will have Commodores around until end of year so there will not be too much of a lag until the new-generation Commodore arrives.

“In addition, we can pick up growth in SUVs. Equinox can pick up some of that and I think Colorado is growing month-on-month, so we’ll see some large sedan owners move over to trucks and we will also see them moving to SUVs and I can also see downsizing to an Astra sedan or even hatch.

“Given our product portfolio, given the growth in trucks and SUVs and the expectations of the next-gen Commodore, I think we will be able to fill that hole.”

Mr Harland, told GoAutoNews Premium that he was “very confident about the products”.

“My goal is to get people talking about Holden, to bring inquiries to dealerships and to get people to experience the cars,” he said.

“Once I know someone’s driving a Holden vehicle then I know the chances of success of a sale are very high.Holden Commodore

“I think we have been making some progress on the (Holden) brand and we want to continue – depending on the vehicle and the target buyer – to reach a broad section of people and bring new people to the brand.”

In launching the Astra sedan, Mr Harland said Holden was very aware of the success of the Mazda3.

“I think some of the lessons learnt from the Mazda3 is Mazda’s consistency, how they market themselves, and how they use consistent styling language so people know what to expect when they consider that brand,” he said.

“That’s what we want to do. As we change from a manufacturer in Australia to an importer, we need to ensure that the population has a consistent view of Holden.

“We will continue to be an authentic and intrinsically Australian brand but I don’t want to rely on just our history. I want to show people the pillars of Holden – safety, technology and dependability.

“So we are not doing exactly what Mazda is doing but we can learn from what they have done over the past few years.”

By Neil Dowling

Holden Commodore

Holden Commodore

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