November Sees Gains for German Automakers, Porsche Excepted

Nearly all the German carmakers continued to post sales increases this past month, with Porsche being the sole exception. Other German automakers reported a general increase in sales ranging from 3.6 percent (Audi) to a whopping 96 percent (Smart). Among the highlights of German sales were the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG with a 369 percent increase over last November, the all-new Volkswagen Passat which posted an 1822 percent increase, and the BMW X3 which marked a 2244 percent increase year-over-year. The three best-selling German cars last month were the Volkswagen Jetta (11,131 sold), Mercedes-Benz C-Class (8358 sold), and the BMW 3 Series (7748 sold).

Audi – Up 3.6 Percent

Audi marked its 11th-straight record-setting month today, with sales up 3.6 percent year over year. The end of November sees Audi with 104,906 vehicles sold in 2011, a new sales record for the brand. Posting the highest year-over-year sales increase strangely enough was the Audi TT, which with 164 vehicles sold was up 115.8 percent. Audi’s volume leader last month was the Q5 with 2390 crossovers sold, a 3.5 percent increase year-over-year. The A4 was Audi’s second biggest volume seller with 2501 vehicles sold (a 9.4 percent decrease over the same period last year), while the A6 was the third biggest volume seller with 1379 sold, a 69 percent increase year-over-year. Audi’s biggest losers last month were the A3 (491 sold, down 37 percent) and the Q7 (605 sold, down 39.5 percent). Interestingly, 54 percent of A3s and 35 percent of Q7s sold were TDI clean diesel models.

BMW – Up 13.5 Percent

BMW posted another month of sales gains, matching the 13.5 percent year-over-year sales increase it enjoyed last month. BMW’s big gain in November was seen in the all-new X3 which posted an increase of 2244 percent year-over-year with 2321 X3s sold. The all-new 6 Series also posted an impressive year-over-year sales gain of 762 percent, with 414 hardtop convertibles sold. BMW’s biggest loser was the Z4, with only 92 sold last month – a 47 percent drop over last year. Also of note, even as the volume leader with 7748 vehicles sold, the 3 Series posted another month of slumping sales down 9.1 percent, likely due to the new model’s impending arrival.

Mercedes-Benz – Up 55.2 Percent

Mercedes-Benz reported its highest-ever November volume with 28,255 vehicles sold, a 55.2 percent improvement year-over-year. Surprisingly Mercedes-Benz’s biggest volume gain was seen in the SLS AMG – with 169 sold it was up 369 percent year-over-year. The 2012 CLS-Class posted the second-highest percentage increase at 215 percent. Mercedes’ volume seller and third -highest percentage gainer was the new 2012 C-Class, with 8358 sold, bringing it up 112 percent year-over-year. Rounding out the top three in volume was the E-Class with 5095 sold, and the new M-Class with 4796 sold. Both likely helped drive Mercedes diesel sales up 136 percent year-over-year, with 2097 of the 28,255 vehicles Mercedes sold backing oil-burners under the hood.

Mini – Up 37.1 Percent

Mini posted an impressive sales gain of 37.1 percent year-over-year in November driven almost entirely by the Countryman, 2012 of which found homes last month bringing the total sold this year to 13,290. The rest of Mini’s lineup suffered from double-digit year-over-year losses. Mini’s volume leader, the Cooper Hardtop family, was down 25.3 percent with 2077 units sold. The Cooper Convertible was down 19.6 percent, and the Cooper Clubman was down 24 percent. November also marked the debut of the new Cooper Coupe, which sold 414 units as production ramps up.

Porsche – Down 6.6 Percent

Porsche reported its second straight month in a row with a downturn in year-over-year sales. This month Porsche’s sole gainer was the Cayenne with 1085 sold compared to the 997 sold last November. Only 167 Boxsters and Caymans, and 608 Panameras were sold last month. The 911 is predictably down as well, with only 395 sold last month as many hold out for the 991, scheduled to hit dealerships early next year.

Smart – Up 96 Percent

November proved to be a rare bright spot for Smart’s up-and-down U.S. sales. Sales of the Smart ForTwo were up 96 percent year-over-year, totaling 414 vehicles. In October, Smart sold only 327 vehicles, making it down 10.9 percent.

Volkswagen – Up 40.7 Percent

Between the Passat being named the 2012 Motor Trend Car of the Year, and a sales total of 28,412 vehicles, Volkswagen had a big November. VW’s sales were up 40.7 percent year-over-year with the Passat posting the largest increase with 6018 sold and an 1822 percent increase year-over-year as its Chattanooga, Tenn. assembly line ramps up. VW’s volume seller for November was the Jetta sedan with a 24.3 percent increase and 11,131 units sold. Sales of the Golf and GTI were also both up in November, with both posting 37.5 percent and 33.3 percent increases, respectively. VW’s lowest-volume sellers last month were the Eos (which still posted year-over-year gains of 53 percent), and the Routan which was down 34.8 percent with only 699 sold. TDI models accounted for 19.8 percent of VW’s November sales, and are up 36 percent year-over-year.

Source: Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volkswagen

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