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Realising opportunities in the premium automotive market via context-oriented new product positioning

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The increasing variety of car concepts is a key characteristic of today's passenger car markets. Particularly in the premium segment with higher revenue opportunities, competition intensity is rising continuously. Numerous traditional car concepts, as well as new body styles, explicitly address heterogeneous premium customers' expectations. The build-up of body styles, exterior designs, and engine types result in a loss of traditional basing points for new car categorisation. Therefore, new car positioning is no longer the sheer outcome of technical data. Instead, it turns out to be a key issue of successful product management and a trigger of customers' purchasing decisions. Against this background, we investigated two positioning alternatives – ‘high’ versus ‘premium’ – by means of a large-scale customer base generated from an innovative car clinic set-up. The paper illustrates the effects of alternative positioning strategies and corresponding context effects on the willingness to pay, design perception, and purchase intention. The derived revenue mark-ups prove adequate product positioning as a relevant factor for revenue optimisation.
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Keywords: automotive industry; car clinics; context effects; new product positioning; reference effects

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Dr. Ing. h. c. F. Porsche AG, Germany 2: Bielefeld University, Germany

Publication date: 2012-05-01

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