BMW Group Increases Sales In First Quarter By 8.2%

  • New highs on monthly and quarterly basis
  • Successful start for the new BMW 3 Series Saloon

The BMW Group increased its sales in the first quarter of 2005 by 8.2% to a new high of 292,207 automobiles (prev.yr.: 269,974). As regards the BMW brand, deliveries to customers in the first three months rose by 7.8% to 239.387 vehicles (prev.yr.: 222,087). MINI recorded an increase of 10.3% to 52,694 units (prev.yr.: 47,774). Rolls-Royce Motor Cars handed over 126 Phantoms to customers (prev.yr.: 139/-9.4%).

In terms of sales volume within the BMW Group, Germany and the USA, with 65,680 (prev.yr.: 60,462/+8.6%) and 65,536 (prev.yr.: 61,241/+7.0%) cars sold respectively, were neck and neck in the first quarter. Examples of countries with well above average growth are Portugal with a rise of 43.9% to 1,973 units (prev.yr.: 1,371), Russia with plus 44.4% (1,350/prev.yr.: 935) and the African/Caribbean region with a rise of 22.6% (6,965/prev.yr.: 5,680).

Dr. Michael Ganal, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Sales and Marketing, said: "All over the world, the BMW Group has developed far better in the first quarter than its relevant competitors. This means that we have further expanded our position in the premium segment. We achieved this improvement even though the BMW 3 Series is in the model changeover phase."

The BMW Group has also achieved a new top volume on a monthly basis too. Never in a single month has the company been so successful in terms of sales as it was in March 2005, when 127,093 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce cars were sold. This is a rise of 7.9% over the same month last year (117,826).

The BMW brand improved in March by 7.0% to 104,909 vehicles (prev.yr.: 98,037) - which is also a new high. The entire model range was responsible for this success. The market has given a very warm reception in particular to the newest members of the BMW product portfolio, the BMW 1 Series and the 3 Series Saloon. Since its launch in September last year, almost 76,000 of the new BMW 1 Series have been delivered; in the first quarter of 2005, 36,042 were sold, and 16,362 were delivered to customers in March alone.

Michael Ganal: "With the sales figures achieved and the positive trend in the development of sales of the BMW 1 Series, the entry into the extremely competitive compact class with a premium vehicle can be described as a success".

Since the market launch of the new BMW 3 Series Saloon on 5 March, 6,444 units have already been delivered. The BMW 3 Series is the world's best-selling premium automobile of its class. All the indications are that the new 3 Series Saloon will help to consolidate this position still further. The pleasing reactions of specialists, dealers and customers are confirmed by the number of orders received.

Record sales levels were also achieved for the MINI brand, both on the basis of the first quarter 2005 and in a monthly comparison. In March, the 20,000 mark was passed for the first time in a month, with 22,130 vehicles sold (prev.yr.: 19,740/+12.1%). The Convertible variant, with 5,389 units sold, accounts for about a quarter of the total sales volume. Comparing sales by country, the MINI home country - the United Kingdom - is still the undisputed leader, with 7,244 MINI sold in March, followed by the USA (4,127), Germany (2,755), Italy (2,004) and Japan (1,621).

Published 9 April 2005 Melanie Carter

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