Audi was the top seller of luxury cars in April 2015 around the world, outselling BMW and Mercedes-Benz. Last month, Audi’s deliveries increased by 2.5% to 152,850 cars, aided by the demand in the U.S. for the Audi Q5 and Q7 sport utility vehicles. In comparison, BMW sold 148,896 vehicles (a 5.6% increase). Mercedes-Benz reported sales of 148,072 cars (an 11% hike).
Last Tuesday, Audi presented the revamped Q7 sport utility vehicle in Verbier, Switzerland. At this event, Audi Chief Executive Officer Rupert Stadler said that the automaker had a “very decent first quarter” and that its growth is at a “good pace.”
BMW has made a promise to keep its lead when it comes to annual sales in the global premium car business even when its key models like the 7-Series sedan are already dated. All three Germany luxury makers are launching new models to broaden their appeal and be more competitive.
This year, BMW is presenting the Gran Tourer. By the end of the decade, Mercedes aims to launch a pickup truck. From January to April 2015, BMW was able to keep its top ranking with a 5.5% increase in sales to 600,473 cars. Deliveries of Audi went up 5.2% to 591,050 vehicles.
Meanwhile, Mercedes saw a 14% increase in its sales to 577,674 units. Stadler said that next year, Audi will add to its SUV lineup with the new subcompact Q1. The full-size Q8 will arrive by 2019.
The automaker predicts that in 2020, SUVs will make up about 40% of total sales – an improvement over the 32% currently. A lot is at stake for these new additions.
As growth becomes steadier, the competition in China (Audi’s biggest market) is expected to intensify. Stadler anticipates that demand throughout the industry will increase to around 8% this year, quicker than in most key markets.