While the global automotive market may seem sluggish in growth to mainstream car manufacturers, the German luxury trio Mercedes, BMW and Audi seem to think otherwise. In spite of the global slowdown in sales, the luxury automobile manufacturers posted their best-ever monthly worldwide sales in the month of March with BMW leading the pack. The shift towards compact luxury models has been a strong sales driver for the companies.
Bavarian based BMW sold 1,86,126 units in March 2014, witnessing a rise of 16.9 percent for the same period compared to last year; making it the brand’s most successful month ever. The company sold a total of 4,28,259 units for the first three months of 2014, registering an increase of 12.3 percent compared to the first quarter of 2013. BMW states that its X-badged vehicles saw a strong demand which was a major sales driver in the first quarter. The Group’s other brand MINI, which saw a generation change was down by 16.9 percent, reduced to 26,382 units in March. BMW’s flagship luxury brand Rolls-Royce had an impressive first quarter with 897 units sold.
Stuttgart based Mercedes-Benz delivered a total of 1,58,523 units in the month of March globally, which also turns out to be the bestselling month in the company’s history. The sales were up by 13.3 percent, when compared to the same period last year. Mercedes saw total deliveries of 3,74,276 units in the first quarter of 2014 with a rise of 15.2 percent compared to 2013. The company’s new range of compact vehicles including the A, B, CLA and GLA-Class vehicles cumulatively sold a total of 43,389 units in March.
Ingolstadt based Audi delivered a total of 1,70,450 units globally witnessing a rise of 15.4 percent compared to March 2013. March was a significantly optimistic month for Audi with cumulative sales mounting to 4,12,850 units registering an increase by 11.7 percent in the first quarter, compared to last year. This is for the first time that the company exceeded the 4 lakh sales mark in the first three months of a year. The major contributors to the immense growth have been the A3 sedan, A3 Cabriolet and the facelifted A8 models.
In India too, Mercedes and Audi registered phenomenal growth in the last fiscal, with Mercedes selling 9548 units of its vehicles, while Audi was leading the race with 10,126 units sold among the German trio. Audi also turned out to be the first luxury car maker in the country to exceed the 10,000 unit sales mark in a year. The next couple of years will see a range of compact luxury vehicles being launched with the Mercedes CLA sedan and GLA SUV and Audi’s A3 sedan being some of the significant launches in the country.