CLA helps Mercedes-Benz gain ground on Bmw and Audi

Article by Anita Panait, on October 12, 2013

Mercedes-Benz posted a 16-percent year-on-year surge in luxury vehicle sales in September 2013 to 143,000 cars and sports utility vehicles. With the strong sales results in September, Mercedes logged a 10-percent jump in sales in the first nine months of 2013 to 1.06 million cars and SUVs. Mercedes managed to outperform premium sales rivals and fellow German carmakers BMW and Audi during the month. 

The BMW brand recorded an 8-percent hike in deliveries in September to 158,000, and a 9-percent rise in the first nine months of 2013 to 1.21 million units. Audi gained 10 percent in September, contributing to an 8-percent jump in sales in the first nine months of the year. In comparison, Mercedes' sales in the nine-month period is around 88 percent of BMW's this year, from 87 percent in 2012. Audi’s sales in the nine-month period, meanwhile, are around 98 percent of BMW’s.

The launch of the CLA coupe during the period contributed much to Mercedes’ sales, helping drive the demand to almost double for the carmaker compact models. Mercedes, BMW and Audi are all aiming for record global deliveries in 2013, helped by new models like the CLA, the BMW 4-series coupe and the sedan version of Audi A3. Frank Biller, an analyst at LBBW, remarked that Mercedes “is getting some tailwinds from its model cycle," noting that “young products are pushing sales."

He expects Mercedes to post improved profit margins in the third quarter, allowing it to close the gap with rivals’ earnings. The German carmakers are concentrating their expansions in China, the United States and South America to offset the current slump in Europe. Deliveries in China in the first nine months of 2013 jumped 9 percent at Mercedes, 21 percent at Audi and 20 percent at BMW.

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