BMW brand posted a 17-percent rise in sales in March to 186,126 units, helping the BMW Group retain its lead in global premium car sales. Sales growth in March allowed the brand to post a 12-percent surge in deliveries in the first quarter of 2014 to 428,259 vehicles, BMW said in a statement. The brand outsold No. 2 Audi by 15,409 vehicles in the first three months.
BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz all logged their highest monthly sales in March thanks to strong performances in China and the United States. Audi momentarily surpassed the BMW brand in sales at the start of 2014, while Mercedes' new compacts resulted to sales gains. All three luxury carmakers are aiming to post record deliveries in 2014.
Juergen Pieper, an analyst at Bankhaus Metzler, expects BMW to retain its lead since it is ahead in terms of products and technology. He noted that Audi is feeling the most pressure this year since its high-volume models like the A4 and the Q7 won't arrive until next year.
For March, Audi posted a 15-percent jump in sales to 170,450 units, Mercedes-Benz logged a 13-percent surge in deliveries to 158,523 vehicles.
For the first quarter of 2014, Audi reported a 12-percent climb in deliveries to 412,850 vehicles, while Mercedes-Benz declared a 15-percent leap to 374,276 cars. BMW's sales growth was boosted by demand for its SUVs that are produced at its Spartanburg site in South Carolina.
BMW is investing $1 billion to expand the site’s production capacity by 50 percent. BMW saw deliveries for its X1 surge, 15 percent, the X3 11 percent and X5 14 percent.
BMW sales chief Ian Robertson remarked in a statement that deliveries of X-vehicles have been particularly strong, adding that the carmaker is experiencing steady improvements in almost all regions despite continuing economic uncertainties.