European sales 2013 Limousine segment

mercedes-s-class-sales-europe-jan-sep-2013The limousine segment in Europe is down 19% in 2013, and the ranking is shuffled as buyers in this segment tend to be sensitive to having the freshest model on the market. Image is an important factor when you are paying north of 100.000 euros for a luxury sedan. The German premium brands traditionally rule this segment, and in 2013, 86% of limousines sold in Europe are German. This is by counting Rolls Royce as a British brand, despite its BMW ownership.

The newly introduced Mercedes-Benz S-Class is up 20% for the full year, but up a much more impressive 214% for the last five months of the year, when the new generation became widely available. The S-Class sold more than 1.000 units per month for each of the last four months and should be able to build on this excellent performance in 2014, increasing its lead on its rivals even further.

Its German competitors BMW 7-series, Porsche Panamera and Audi A8 are all down double digits. The Audi A8 has received a minor facelift late 2013, which may not have shown its full effect last year. Let’s keep an eye on the model for the first months of this year before calling it a success or failure.

The facelifted Jaguar XJ keeps the model relatively stable, down just 2 percent, as it takes distance from the aging VW Phaeton.

The new Maserati Quattroporte, available for 10 months of the year, more than quadruples its sales, Lexus LS sales are up an estimated threefold, while the new Bentley Flying Spur is up 84%. All three pass the Rolls Royce Ghost, Aston Martin Rapide and Bentley Mulsanne.

For 2014, the Porsche Panamera Plug-In hybrid should be able to “steal” some customers, thanks to government incentives on green cars or environmentally conscious and brand conscious buyers for whom Tesla doesn’t sound premium enough.

2013 2012 Change
1. Mercedes-Benz S-Class 8.736 7.299 20%
2. BMW 7-series 5.980 8.173 -27%
3. Porsche Panamera 5.679 7.543 -25%
4. Audi A8/S8 5.486 6.803 -19%
5. Jaguar XJ 2.287 2.325 -2%
6. VW Phaeton 1.793 2.260 -21%
7. Maserati Quattroporte 452 103 339%
8. Lexus LS (est.) 402 135 198%
9. Bentley Flying Spur 313 170 84%
10. Rolls Royce Ghost 255 329 -22%
11. Aston Martin Rapide 250 228 10%
12. Bentley Mulsanne 156 179 -13%
13. Rolls Royce Phantom 120 110 9%
Segment total -19%


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