Because Dacia was in one of the worst situations a car maker can be:
- no financial backing;
- antiquated production facility;
- a lack of proper and modern cars.
Surely, this should have been the end. But this didn't happen, because Renault bought the company and they started investing heavily in it.
But this is not special in any way. The special part came after that, in the form of marketing campaigns.
My studies are not at all related to marketing or economics, but it doesn't take a MBA to see how effective the strategy was.
Firstly, they started the hype when they announced the Logan. A new and relatively modern car for less than 6000 euros was not heard of before this.
It stirred the waters in the automotive industry and this was the first step towards proper brand awareness and recognition.
Next, they went on and capitalized on the new platform and car, by making the Logan MCV, Logan Van and the Logan Pick-up, all of them using the same philosophy: cheap and modern car.
When they wanted to launch the next car, they made a really inspired ad campaign on the most watched car show in the world: Top Gear. I'm sure every single Top Gear fan remembers the "Great News" gags.
These are not the only marketing campaigns that they started:
- the Logan Cup series (a Dacia Logan only rally competition) which also ran a round on Bucharest Ring during the FIA GT racing weekend.
- raced the Dacia Duster and Lodgy Glace in the Andros Trophy (a winter rally racing series)
- raced the Dacia Duster "No Limit" in the famous Pikes Peak Hill Climb (finishing 3rd after Tajima's Monster and Rhys Millen)
Dacia is in the top 10 best selling cars in a lot of important markets:
- Russia (Logan - 6th in February 2012 )
- Romania (Logan - 1st, Duster - 2nd in February 2012)
- Brazil (Sandero - 10th in February 2012)
Good ranking in most european markets as well, with the Duster and the Logan consistently in the top 50, with large increases compared to January.
Also very good results in 2011:
26th : Duster - 141,961 units
64th : Sandero - 71,646 units
89th : Logan - 48,553 units
This amounts to 262,160 cars sold only in Europe (~343,000 worldwide), more than the total sales in every year until to 2009.
Also, only 5,000 units decrease(348,723 units sold in 2010, worldwide) in sales during 2011 is a great performance, considering the whole financial situation of the world.
We're looking forward to see what the new Dacia Logan will look like(as this is the logically, then next car to be revealed by them) and how will the new Lodgy will perform in 2012.