German Brands' October Sales: Mercedes, Porsche, VW Up; BMW Down; Smart Hit Hard

Paul Niedermeyer
by Paul Niedermeyer

VW posted a 7% increase in October over the same month a year ago. The Rabbit’s fade-out led the negative column, with a 44% decline. The Jetta posted a solid 25% increase. The Passat, down 41%, is giving way to the CC, which is way up at +256%. The CC now outsells the Passat almost 3 to 1. Since the Passat is going away soon in favor of VW’s new USA mid-sedan, and the CC is going to stay, this trend is probably being engineered through incentives (and the lack thereof).

Audi was down 1% overall. 5 is the magic number for Audi: the A5 was up 28%, and the Q5 is already the second best seller in the lineup. Mid-sized crossovers to the rescue! The more larger/more expensive models, such as A8, R8 and Q7, are taking the biggest hits.

BMW Group was the big loser among the Germans, down 19%. Both the BMW brand (-19%) and Mini (-20%) took the hit equally. The 1 series is sinking, with sales down 57%. The new 7 posted a 10% increase. BMW light trucks (that’s a hard couple of words to type) were down disproportionately, especially the X3, down 86%. The lovely X6 managed a 39% increase.

Daimler overall was up 9%, but that was the result of the Smart’s maxi sized decline of 70%. Ouch! Mercedes was up smartly, with +21%, led by the new E-Class, +190%.

Porsche’s 15% increase in October helped reduce their year-to-date totals to -29%.

[NOTE: Picture above is not the original one posted with the story. If the comments confuse you, this is why.]

Paul Niedermeyer
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  • Johnthacker Johnthacker on Nov 03, 2009
    I wonder how much of that is thanks to the TDI? I’m not a TDI fanboy, but is something distinctive the Jetta offers which you simply can’t get in any competing model. I wonder. BMW apparently can't give the 335d away, judging by how much extra cash they're putting on the hood of the diesel model compared to the gasoline versions, though. Audi is much closer to a recent model introductions, whereas BMW is coming up on some new models, which depresses sales. The exception that proves the rule for Audi is that the A8 refresh is coming up. The Q7 numbers are awful for Audi, though, considering the minor refresh for the 2010 models; the Q5 must also be stealing sales. Still, not great numbers for the Bavarians, even if they have new models coming up soon.
  • Aenea Aenea on Nov 04, 2009

    VW actually broke out the TDI sales. It was close to 25% of all jetta sedans were TDI, and 90% of jetta wagons were TDI. I think the wagon number was influenced by the lack of stock on the gas models.

  • Wsn Wsn on Nov 04, 2009
    theflyersfan : November 3rd, 2009 at 7:43 pm …and now smart realizes what happens when an entire brand is built around one specific idea and types of cars. See Hummer for another example. --- Nothing wrong with building a around one niche market. The problem with smart is that it's too expensive for the content. It would have been a wonderful $5000 car. The problem with Hummer is that the build quality is too low. Match it to Hyundai and Hummer will have no problem surviving.
  • Bigbadbill Bigbadbill on Nov 04, 2009

    I couldn't put my finger on what I disliked about the Smart Car. Then it dawned on me...It's a circus clown car. You know... one of those little cars in the circus where the clowns keep piling our ad infinitum. And everybody laughs their heads off. If I drove one of those things around town, I'd feel like a circus clown, and everyone on the street would laughing their heads me!