June 05, 2012

Record month of May: Mercedes-Benz surpasses previous year’s sales high

As in the previous year, Mercedes-Benz again posted a new record for unit sales in May 2012. In total, the company delivered 113,136 units. Thus, sales were up 4.0 per cent on the record figure for 2011. More than half-a-million customers have already chosen a new
vehicle from the brand with the star since the start of the year (531,382 units; +8.4 per cent). This is the earliest in a year this threshold has ever been passed.

The Mercedes-Benz Cars division also posted record sales in May and year-to-date. The company sold a total of 577,378 Mercedes-Benz, smart, and Maybach brand vehicles (+8.0 per cent) in the period from January to May. 122,600 units were delivered in the past month (+3.1 per cent).

“The record sales in May show that our new models are being excellently received by customers across all segments. The best example for this is the new B-Class. Sales for this model series have been at record levels both in May and year-to-date. We are on track to meet our target of selling more vehicles in 2012 than ever before in a single year and therefore to grow stronger than the market,” said Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice-President Sales and Marketing, Mercedes-Benz Cars.

Sales by Mercedes-Benz continued to develop especially well in the United States. In May, sales were at a new high of 22,515 units (+19.2 per cent). Also a sales high posted the brand with the star for the period from January to May (106,364 units; +17.8 per cent). Thus, Mercedes-Benz is leading the field of premium manufacturers on the US market.

As well as in the US, Mercedes-Benz is also the best-selling premium manufacturer in Germany. 102,567 vehicles were delivered to customers in the first five months of 2012 (+6.5 per cent).

On the contracting Western European market (without Germany) Mercedes-Benz has sold 2.8 per cent more vehicles since the beginning of the year than in the same period of the previous year (126,922 units). In the UK, deliveries developed particularly well. New sales records were set both for May (+18.2 per cent) and year-to-date (+11.8 per cent). In Switzerland, sales increased by more than a third, leading to a new sales record since the beginning of the year.

Sales in China (including Hong Kong) are also at a record level for 2012. With 82,534 Mercedes-Benz cars from January to May, 8.7 per cent more vehicles were delivered to customers than in the previous year. Due to the B-class model changeover, the high-volume model series is currently subject to highly limited availability in China. Nonetheless, with16,529 units sold in May (+0.8 per cent), sales figures are above last year’s record level.

Mercedes-Benz has posted excellent year-to-date sales figures in Japan and Russia. The brand with the star achieved a growth of more than 30 per cent in both countries over the first five months. Russia has set new sales records both for May and since the start of the year. Past May was even the most successful month ever in the Russian market. In South Korea, Mercedes-Benz reports sales records both for the past month and since the beginning of the year. In May, sales increased by 36.9 per cent whereas sales in 2012 as a whole increased by 4.7 per cent.

As in recent months, the trend in unit sales was again highly positive in the Middle East in May with a surge of 11.7 per cent.

Regarding the model series, sales of new B-class is still climbing steadily. Never before so many new B-class vehicles have been delivered to customers from January to May (54,321 units). Sales for this model series were up 17.7 per cent year-on-year in May alone. But also the A-class is being excellently received by buyers in the year of its model changeover. So far, the brand’s entry model has posted an increase of 40.2 per cent in 2012. The popularity of the A-class among its customers was also shown by the study on car drivers’ satisfaction with their vehicles presented by J.D. Powers and Associates last week. Here, the A-class landed first place in the 'compact class' category. Along with the A-class, the C-class and the E-class also took pole position in their respective segments in the customer satisfaction survey. Hence, Mercedes-Benz came off as overall winner of the study.

The positive response to the vehicles is as well represented by their respective sales figures. The C-class segment has seen growth of 18.5 per cent year-to-date. In the E-class segment, the CLS, for example, is continuing to enjoy strong demand. Sales of the four-door coupe have risen by more than half since the start of the year (+53.4 per cent).

S-class sedan sales are also up year-to-date, with 8.9 per cent more units of the brand’s flagship sold. Thus, the S-class is still the best-selling vehicle in its competitive segment this year. The performance in sales of the new SL has been outstanding as well. Delivery figures for the sports roadster more than tripled in May (+251.9 per cent).       

Mercedes-Benz brand SUVs have reached new sales highs. In total, 103,005 units have been sold in this segment so far in 2012. The bestseller among the SUVs is the M-class, sales of which increased by 29.3 per cent. But also the GL and the G-class develop very well, shortly before the run-up of their new models. In the first five months of this year, more GL units were sold than ever before in this period (+14.8 per cent). The G-class even posted a boost of 26.1 per cent.

smart is still on course for its goal of maintaining the previous year’s sales level over the year as a whole. Since the start of the year, sales are up 3.4 per cent at 45,996 units. 9,464 units of the city runabouts were delivered to customers in May (-6.9 per cent). Positive momentum is expected of the gradual launch of the facelift in further markets in the upcoming months. In May, the smart fortwo was again especially popular in the US (+42.9 per cent) and China (including Hong Kong) (+35.8 per cent).


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