Car sales in the limousine segment in Europe are up a whopping 44% in the first quarter of 2014 after a 19% decline for the full year 2013. And although 7 out of 13 nameplates in the segment show an increase of sales, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class takes almost 85% of the segment growth just by itself, thanks to the new generation introduced last year.
The S-Class is the clear leader of the segment, selling more than double of the second placed Audi A8. The A8 has leapfrogged both the Porsche Panamera and the BMW 7-series as it was only in fourth position by the end of 2013. The update of the A8 has helped the model to a 21% increase of sales.
The Plug-in hybrid version of the Panamera is likely to have helped the Porsche increase its sales by 27% compared to the same period last year, helping it stay on the segment podium as 7-series sales are down 17%. [Read more…]