With a 7.6 percent sales increase in June 2012, Mercedes-Benz extends its sales lead in the premium segment. Mercedes sold 22,231 units last month, while sales of BMW brand vehicles increased 0.4 percent in June for a total of 21,725 compared to 21,637 vehicles sold in June 2011. Year-to-date, the BMW brand is up 11.3 percent on sales of 126,504 compared to 113,705 sold in the first six months of 2011.
After six months, Mercedes U.S. sales rose 16 percent to 128,595, to lead BMW by 2,091. Mercedes’ sales were boosted by high incentives and the introduction of the new M-Class SUV and redesigned C-Class Coupe.
“They certainly outperformed expectations,” said Jesse Toprak, an industry analyst with TrueCar.com. “They were very, very aggressive with lease specials, especially C- and E- Class vehicles. It seems like it was a conscious effort to get the volume up in the first half.”
BMW finished last year with 2,715 units more than Mercedes. Ludwig Willisch remains confident that the Munich-based brand will again finish No.1. The new 3 Series will help boost sales, despite the 26 percent fall in June. The xDrive variant of the new 3 Series will play an important role after its launch in the third quarter of this year.
Lexus is making a comeback. After a rough 2011 due to the earthquakes and tsunami in Japan, Lexus’ sales rose 86 percent to 20,022.
After six months, Lexus sales gained 23 percent to 108,132.
Audi is another contender to the crown that continue to grow in the United States. In June 2012, Audi’s sales rose 26 percent to 12,664 units, while the first half of the year sales clocked in at 65,158 or 17 percent increase.
U.S. premium automaker, Cadillac, reports a 12 percent increase in sales to 12,124, but it slid 17 percent to 62,812 during the first half.
Coming from behind are Acura and Infiniti. Acura reports an impressive 77 percent growth to 15,370 and 20 percent to 72,936 during from beginning of this year. Infiniti sold 10,436 vehicles last month, a 66 percent gain from a year earlier.
Jaguar continues to struggle with growth in the U.S. and its sales only rose 2 percent to 4,632 units.[Source: Bloomberg ]