At the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, automotive executives have added the nouveau rich as the new target market. Sales for Maserati vehicles, for example, grew 1,000 units last year, the bulk having been the $115,000 Quattroporte. Plus, Maserati is planning to roll out an even less expensive model. Sales for BMW’s
Rolls-Royce ($360,000), however, didn’t break 800, a one percent increase from 2004.
Other vehicles, such as Ferrari's F430 coupe, have also increased in demand as Fiat ( Ferrari and Maserati's parent company) expand into new markets as China and Eastern Europe.
"For the foreseeable future there will be demand from people who want to show their style, their social achievements, through their clothing, through jewelery and also through their cars," said Karl Heinz Kalbfell, chief executive of Fiat SpA sports car unit Maserati. (And apparently the Rolls is old school for many of these folks.)
[Article by Reuters via the New Zealand Herald]