BMW AG saw its lead against Audi in the race to become the world’s best-selling luxury carmaker drop in the first five months of 2014, despite selling more in May. Higher demand for 5-series sedans and X5 SUVs helped BMW edge out Audi by around 1,000 vehicles in May.
But in the first five months of 2014, Audi posted a 12-percent rise in sales, outgrowing BMW, which only grew 11 percent. That allowed Audi to trim BMW’s lead from 11,000 units to just 8,200 vehicles in the year-to-date.
Audi, which aims to become the largest luxury carmaker in the world by 2020, has been trimming the gap thanks to its expanded offerings. In April, Audi posted a 26-percent jump in sales in the United States, thanks to the launch of the A3 sedan in the country.
BMW rolled out its own 2-series compact coupe in the US in March. Ian Robertson, head of sales and marketing at BMW, said in a statement that the Group’s record sales in May kept it on pace to achieve over 2 million vehicle sales this year.
He noted of a solid growth in the US and strong performance in Asia. BMW sold a total of 153,023 vehicles in May for a 10-percent jump, helped by an 11-percent gain for the 5-series sales gained 11 percent and a 63-percent growth for the X5.
Audi also grew 11 percent in May to 152,000 units, as its A3 models and Q3 compact SUV surged 43 percent and 21 percent respectively. On the other hand, Mercedes-Benz posted a 10-percent surge in May to 134,031 vehicles, helped by its C-class sedan and GLA compact SUV.
Mercedes also managed to trim BMW’s lead from 88,300 vehicles to around 80,700 vehicles in the year-to-date. BMW Group is seeking to sell a record number of vehicles and is launching new vehicles to stave off challenges from Audi and Mercedes-Benz, which are both seeking to topple BMW from its throne.