There was a time when Bavaria (that’s the south-east of Germany for the geographically challenged) wasn’t known for much more than beer, cows, and King Ludwig’s castle. Now it’s the breeding ground for luxury cars (locally known as the “Premium-Segment”). And the cars breed with wild abandon. Both Audi and BMW report record sales for August.
Audi delivered 94,100 cars in August worldwide, around 17 percent more than during the same month last year, and a new Audi record. In China, sales are up 25.5 percent to 28,068 units. In the United States, sales are up 11.1 percent. In Europe, Audi sales are up 13.7 percent – thanks in part to strong growth in the German market, where Audi increased its sales by 20.2 percent.
50 miles south from Audi’s Ingolstadt headquarters is BMW in Munich. They did even better than Audi. In absolute numbers. Not in percentages. But as the father of a TTAC commenter had rightfully commented: You can’t eat percentages.
With 110,891 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brand automobiles sold worldwide, the BMW Group is looking back at its best-ever August sales result. Compared to the 103,242 units sold in August last year, that’s an increase of 7.4 percent. For the year, the BMW Group sold 1,073,363 units, up 16.8 percent over the previous January-August period (919,256).
Guess where BMW had the strongest growth. China? Wrong. In China, BMW sales climbed 8.7 percent in August to 18,462 units. The strongest growth was on BMW’s home turf, in Germany. Here, sales accelerated with smoking tires by 60.3 percent to 23,250 vehicles. In the first eight months of the year, the Group reported a total of 196.264 vehicle registrations in Germany, a 13.3 percent increase over the same period last year (173.282), “which puts it at the top of the German premium segment,” as the press release says. Überholprestige is back again with flashing brights.
In Stuttgart, I hear, Talcid, the German equivalent of Maalox, was flying off the shelves.