By Rob Morris
German carmaker reveals it has suffered a significant drop in sales during the first half of the year.
The Middle East arm of German carmaker BMW revealed on Sunday it has suffered a significant drop in sales during this year’s opening half.
On Sunday, BMW Middle East reported a 10 percent decline compared with the same period in 2008 – but insisted market share had increased steadily in some countries.
From January to June, the company sold 7,165 vehicles across 14 markets in this region, with some nations faring relatively well amid the downturn.
In Lebanon, Syria and Saudi Arabia, BMW sold 531, 451 and 1,241 vehicles, representing an 84, 58 and 24 percent increase respectively.
“The current climate in which the automotive industry has been operating has continued through the first six months of 2009, and as a result a 10% drop in sales was not unexpected,” said James Crichton, sales and marketing director for BMW Middle East.
“We continue to work closely with our importers and the results have helped us to not only achieve growth in several markets, but also increase our market share by three percent from our two main competitors.”
The company’s most popular cars during the opening six months were the 7 Series (2,077 sales), X6 (1,249), X5 (1,176), 3 Series (1,021), and 5 Series (979).
Crichton said he expected BMW’s Middle Eastern sales figure to improve during the coming months.
“We remain on track to come through the rest of 2009 in the best condition possible, and expect the launch of the highly anticipated BMW X5M and X6M models to boost our sales performance in the second half of the year,” he said.
“We remain a strong performing company with a solid foundation. These qualities will enable us to weather effectively such stormy conditions and continue to invest in our future.”
Earlier this month, BMW insisted the car industry would pick up after posting a drop in global sales for this year’s opening half. The company sold 615,454 vehicles compared to 764,874 for the corresponding period in 2008.
It is really refreshing to read facts from a car salesman for a change. BMW clearly knows it has nothing to lose from being candid and its competitors should learn from the positive exercise, instead of talking in vague percentages and fudging sales figures. It would be instructive to see the buy profiles from each market and which models are moving faster than others, as that would indicate to other retailers where the positive signs might be.
I am planning to buy a BM and surprised with the good product knoweldge of the local agents here. They have also given me good prices and offers. I am looking forward to more discount till I finally sign off. Guys, if you have the money then its the best time to buy your dream car.