New Models Create Strong Sales Among European Car Brands

By Joel Arellano | December 02, 2011
Zee German automakers and Chinese-owned Volvo all posted year-to-date double-digit sales for the month of November. Volkswagen took the lead with an increase of more than 25-percent compared to November 2010, with most of the sales drawn from the all-new 2012 VW Beetle and 2012 VW Passat sedan. The "newest" factor, in fact, played a large role in most European vehicle sales here in the States, with the all-new 2012 Audi A6, the 2012 BMW X3, and the 2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class leading sales for their respective brands. Porsche also pulled strongly with its all-new 2012 911 Carrera despite the limited available 2012 models. Jaguar and Land Rover are, again, silent on sales figures. What's up with their Indian masters? BMW Winners:
  • The larger 2012 BMW X3 resonated strongly with Americans, especially with their continually increasing girth if the CDC is to be believed.
  • The public showered greenbacks on the even larger 2012 BMW X5 and showed, yet again, that car enthusiasts do not know how consumers really think. (Hint: "We like to haul things up the canyon, not speed on those canyon curves.")
  • Double digits sales for the 2012 BMW 7 Series for the month of November remind the masses that the wealthy are, indeed, immune to any recession.
  • Mini traditionalists joined their Porsche counterparts and tasted crow (remember the Porsche Cayenne?) as the larger 2012 Mini Countryman crossover made up most of the brand's double-digit sales
BMW Losers:
  • BMW's coupes and sedans suffered last month. Especially hard hit, though, was the 2012 BMW 1 Series, which Americans apparently no longer find cute or fit into.
  • The 2012 BMW 3 Series, which car enthusiasts point as their standard as the ultimate in driving machines, got thumb's down from the public. (Hint: "No hablo gearhead.")
  • Car shoppers should be called crossover shoppers as they pass the 2012 BMW 5 Series and head straight to the BMW X5 (see above).
  • No one's thrilled with the "what is it?" 2012 BMW X6….
  • …and the 2012 Mini Clubman's not getting a lot of looks, either.
Mercedes-Benz Winners:
  • Sales of the all-new 2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class brought triple digits for the month of November and an early Christmas to the automaker.
  • There is no recession among the wealthy as sales of the all-new 2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS jumped more than 350 percent., albeit on a very low volume of vehicles.
  • Triple digit sales for the 2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG. Apparently there's a need for speed even among the well-to-do.
  • The 2012 Mercedes-Benz GL's high sales again illustrate Americans love of spacious comfort.
  • Interior space probably also plays a role in brisk sales of the smaller (but still versatile) 2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK.
Mercedes-Benz Losers:
  • The 2012 Mercedes-Benz R-Class is still not finding a lot of buyers despite its refresh last year and extensive feature list. Are even the wealthy that conscientious of being mistaken in a minivan (even though the R-Class is not)?
  • Winter is upon even the Golden State which may explain the sales drop of droptops like the 2012 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class convertible.
  • Could even coupes be out of favor with the well-to-do? That would explain the lack of interest in the 2012 Mercedes-Benz CL-Class.
  • Ex-HUMMER buyers, apparently, are not cross-shopping the military-esque 2012 Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUV.
Porsche Winners:
  • Americans' demand for crossovers and SUVs continues to be insatiable as sales of the 2012 Porsche Cayenne SUV nearly matches the combined sales of the 911, Boxster/Cayman, and Panamera for the month of November.
Porsche Losers:
  • The 2012 Porsche 911 is the sole exception to "It's new! Let's buy!" mentality among automakers but, according to Porsche, that's more due the limited supply of vehicles than necessarily the demand.
  • Buyers passed the 2012 Porsche Boxster/Cayman as well as the 911 for the month of November.
  • Enthusiasts think sales of the 2012 Porsche Panamera are dropping because shoppers finally realize "true" Porsches are only coupes, not sedans. We, on the other hand, thing sales have dropped because the Panamera is no longer the new "it girl" in Porsche's fleet.
Volkswagen Winners:
  • Are men the reason sales of the all-new "don't call me New" 2012 Volkswagen Beetle are in the triple digits?
  • The 2012 Volkswagen Passat wins Motor Trend's Car of the Year and sales nearly break 2000% for the month of November. Coincidence?
  • The little heard 2012 Volkswagen Eos continues to quietly find fans.
  • The 2012 Audi A6. It's all new. And shoppers respond.
  • Enthusiasts rejoice as the non-practical but oh-so-sporty 2012 Audi TT gets triple-digits sales in November.
Volkswagen Losers:
  • The 2012 Audi A3 too small for shoppers? Looks that way in both November sales and year-to-date.
  • Shoppers find the 2012 Audi Q7 just a bit too big for November, though sales are up year-to-date.
  • Is the more plain-Jane 2012 Volkswagen Passat stealing sales from the 2012 VW CC? Looks that way for November.
  • Sales plummet for the 2012 Volkswagen Routan. Is that because it's a minivan or buyers finally realize it's a Chrysler in German drag?
Volvo Winners:
  • 2012 Volvo S60 sedan by far lead the automaker's growth in November with triple-digits for the month and quadruple figures for year-to-date. Even we're impressed, though we probably shouldn't: it's a good car.
  • Being cute and practical probably explains sales of the 2012 Volvo C30 hatchback.
Volvo Losers:
  • The 2012 Volvo S40 too small for shoppers? Looks that way in both November sales and year-to-date.
  • We blame competition for the sales drop in November of the 2012 Volvo XC60 crossover.
Source: BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volkswagen, Volvo