straight cash homie
http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100902/RETAIL01/100909969/1448Lexus has long been America’s favorite luxury brand, but that could change by the end of the year as BMW continues to see strong U.S. sales. BMW’s U.S. sales increased 1.6 percent in August, marking the brand’s third straight month atop the luxury charts.
Thanks to strong sales of its 1-Series and 7-Series models, BMW’s U.S. sales increased 1.6 percent in August, totaling 19,540 units. Lexus, on the other hand, saw its sales slide 15 percent during the month, resulting in 19,465 units sold.
The luxury market will likely cool for the remainder of the year, but BMW is confident it can keep its current momentum rolling. “We are seeing a slowdown in the market and do not expect the second half of the year to be as strong as the first half,” Jim O’Donnell, BMW of North America president, said in a statement. “Despite this, building momentum throughout the year and narrowing the gap with our competitors is still our plan.”
Lexus remains the best-selling luxury brand in the United States – with 145,490 sales so far this year – but BMW is quickly closing the gap with total sales of 139,236. Mercedes-Benz has tallied 144,753 sales so far this year, but that figure is a bit misleading as it includes sales of its mostly fleet Sprinter van.
Will BMW overtake Lexus this year? Lexus has a strong product in the RX, and the ES, GS, IS, and LS seem to be holding for now, but BMW has been getting more aggressive with its incentives (0.9% financing, etc.), and with the recall, Lexus' title of #1 selling luxury brand is in jeopardy.BMW AG's namesake brand increased U.S. sales 1.6 percent in August and beat Toyota Motor Corp.'s Lexus nameplate as the top U.S. luxury brand for the third straight month.
BMW sales rose to 19,540 as deliveries of its 1 Series gained 53 percent and the 7 Series climbed 42 percent. Lexus deliveries decreased 15 percent to 19,465.
“We are seeing a slowdown in the market and do not expect the second half of the year to be as strong as the first half,” Jim O'Donnell, BMW of North America president, said in a statement. “Despite this, building momentum throughout the year and narrowing the gap with our competitors is still our plan.”
Lexus was one of the few luxury brands to post a sales decline in an overall U.S. market that dropped 21 percent last month. Most of those brands had fallen in August of 2009, when the U.S. cash-for-clunkers incentives spurred sales of small, fuel-efficient cars.
Lexus had record recalls in the past year, including of its LS 460 cars and GX 460 SUVs, and is facing competition from revamped models by BMW and Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz. BMW, which beat Lexus in June and July, has set a goal of becoming the best-selling U.S. luxury brand by 2012.
“The new product is just so important for the entire market but especially for the luxury segment where it is much more discerning between old versus new,” said Jessica Caldwell, senior analyst with Edmunds.com, a Santa Monica, Calif.- based provider of industry data.
Mercedes sales increased 15 percent to 19,682 vehicles. The gain was helped by the revamped E-Class, which rose 26 percent for the month and has gained 71 percent for the year through August.
Lexus remains the U.S. luxury sales leader for the year, with 145,490 deliveries through August, an 11 percent increase. Mercedes sales, including Sprinter vans, have gained 22 percent to 144,753, and BMW's U.S. sales increased 7.8 percent to 139,236 vehicles.