Dr. Joachim Schmidt:
“After a successful first half of the year, the second half has now also begun extremely well with a high growth rate. Starting this fall, a range of attractive new models will provide us with additional momentum.”
“We are optimistic about the second half of the year, and we want sales at Mercedes-Benz to grow at a double-digit rate in full-year 2010.”
Sales at Mercedes-Benz continue to improve, rising by 17 percent in July. This marked the ninth month in a row that sales have increased at a double-digit rate. Global deliveries to customers amounted to 97,700 units last month (July 2009: 83,500). As a result, sales now total 654,400 units since the beginning of the year (January-July 2009: 566,600), representing an increase of 16 percent.
“Our sales figures continue to rise — after a successful first half of the year, the second half has now also begun extremely well with a high growth rate,” says Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing, Mercedes-Benz Cars. “Starting this fall, a range of attractive new models will join the E- and S-Class to provide us with additional momentum. The new generation of the R-Class, for example, has met with a very good customer response, and the thoroughly updated CL will ideally supplement our lineup in the luxury segment.” In addition, Mercedes-Benz is gradually introducing its new and especially efficient six- and eight-cylinder gasoline engines in all model ranges, from the C-Class up. The high-tech direct injection gasoline engines are combined with an enhanced 7GTRONIC automatic transmission with an integrated standard start-stop function. Dr. Schmidt adds: “Our strong product range puts us in a very good position, which is why we can look ahead with optimism. We want sales at Mercedes-Benz to grow at a double-digit rate in full-year 2010.”
Mercedes-Benz made great gains in many automotive markets in July. The brand had its best month ever in China (incl. Hong Kong), where it sold 14,600 passenger vehicles (July 2009: 4,800), an increase of 205 percent compared to the same month last year. As a result, Mercedes-Benz remains the fastest-growing premium brand in China. Mercedes-Benz achieved its biggest gains last month in the dynamically growing market of South Korea, where 1,300 customers bought a vehicle bearing the Mercedes star. This was five times the number sold in July of last year (plus 446 percent). Within the Asia/Pacific region, sales also rose substantially in Australia (plus 48 percent). Mercedes-Benz in July also achieved its best month ever in Russia (plus 116 percent). Record sales were posted as well in India (plus 142 percent) and Turkey (plus 155 percent).
The U.S. market continues to be a key pillar for the success of Mercedes-Benz in the second half of the year. In July, Mercedes-Benz boosted sales in the country by seven percent, to 17,400 units (July 2009: 16,200). The brand has handed over a total of 121,000 vehicles to customers since the beginning of the year (January-July 2009: 101,300), representing an increase of 20 percent. This performance makes Mercedes-Benz the German premium brand with the highest sales volume in the U.S. since the start of this year. Within North America, Mercedes-Benz posted record sales in Canada, where 16,400 units were handed over to customers during the first seven months of the year, an increase of 18 percent compared to the same period in 2009. Mercedes-Benz thus remains market leader in Canada.
With a market share of 10.3 percent in July, Mercedes-Benz has maintained its position as the best-selling premium brand in Germany. In a strongly declining automotive market (minus 30.2 percent), the brand once again gained substantial market shares. Mercedes-Benz sold 23,600 passenger vehicles in Germany last month, thus nearly matching the level reached last year (July 2009: 24,000). The S-Class, the E-Class, the E-Class coupe, the B-Class, and the smart fortwo all had the largest number of new vehicle registrations in their respective segments in Germany.
Mercedes-Benz sold 47,100 vehicles in Western Europe in July (July 2009: 48,300, minus three percent). The brand managed to improve sales in many markets, posting a particularly big increase in the UK, where sales rose by 10 percent.
Among the various model ranges, the E-Class and the S-Class once again contributed the most to boosting Mercedes-Benz sales worldwide in July. A total of 19,200 E-Class sedans were handed over to customers, an increase of 34 percent. That result once again put the model ahead of its competitors. The same is true of the new estate, of which four times as many were delivered to customers in July than in the same month of last year (plus 303 percent). More than 300,000 E-Class sedans, estates, coupes, and convertibles have been delivered since the new E-Class was launched on the market. The S-Class sedan was also very successful last month. The luxury sedan was bought by 5,500 customers, 47 percent more than in July 2009.
The C-Class sedan is also in great demand, becoming the best-selling vehicle in its class in July. A total of 22,200 units were sold, an increase of 15 percent. All in all, more than one million C-Class sedans and estates of the current model range have been handed over to customers to date. In July, all models of the SUV segment posted gains as well. The most sought-after vehicles in this segment were the M-Class, sales of which rose by 22 percent to 5,000 units, and the GLK which sales increased by 13 percent to the record level of 6,300 units. Sales in the SUV segment totaled 14,600 units, an increase of 18 percent on the result last year.
A total of 8,400 smart fortwo were sold in July (July 2009: 10,400 units, minus 20 percent). The company expects demand for the innovative two-seater to pick up again in the third quarter due to the market launch of the new generation of the smart fortwo.