US car sales analysis 2019 Q2 – Premium Full-size SUV segment

Segment sales surge on the back of great performances from Escalade, X7 and G-Class

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Sales in the US Premium Full-size SUV segment rose by 31.7% to 69,767 in the first half of 2019, making this far and away the best-performing segment of all. What’s more, this performance that comes courtesy of new models (BMW X7) and new versions of existing ones (Lincoln NavigatorMercedes-Benz G-Class), puts the model well on course to top its previously-best sales record of a little below 132,000 established in 2007.

Note: Clicking on the model name opens the sales data page for that model; clicking year in the legend turns the display for that year on/off


  • The aging Cadillac Escalade has been experiencing an unexpected reassurance so far in 2019, with sales up a whole 50% on the first half of last year
  • The Cadillac was followed at a considerable distance by the Infiniti QX80, whose latest version after a slow start in 2018 has seen its sales grow by almost 20% in 2019, allowing it to rise from fifth to second in the standings, leaping over the about-to-be-replaced Mercedes-Benz GLS, the facelifted Range Rover and the new Lincoln Navigator, which appears to be running out of steam as sales actually fell 13% in the second quarter
  • The new BMW X7 had a successful debut, pulling out of nowhere to all but overtake the Navigator, and actually easily outselling all but the Escalade in the second quarter (it only went on sale halfway through Q1’19)
  • The new and much-improved Mercedes-Benz G-Class is clearly a hit with buyers, with sales doubling, allowing the german shed  on steroids to outsell the aging Lexus LX

Note: clicking on the model names in legend turns the display for that model on/off; data is displayed from 1990 onwards, but starts earlier – access previous years using slider on bottom

  1. Life is sometimes so unfair. The actual Navigator looks much more luxurious inside and outside but it still can’t get close to the aging Escalade. The rivals are far ahead of the Escalade but no other can compete with the prestige of Caddy’s flagship.

    1. I completely agree with you on this one, Easy Driver.

      I’ve driven the new Navigator and the Escalade, as well as the new Expedition Max and Suburban, and I cannot believe how much more modern and luxurious those Ford products feel compared to the GM models! The GM models drive and feel like a truck from the 1980s. They have this old column-shift 6-speed auto that makes the whole car shudder when you put it into gear, while Ford offers a super smooth 10-speed. GM should be ashamed to be still selling them while its cross-town rival has such better alternatives. But then you look at the sales figures and you start to question yourself…. You start to wonder if Americans actually prefer their cars to be unsophisticated and crass, but then you realize that a lot of these cars (Tahoe, Yukon, Suburban and Expedition) are sold to governments, fleets and rental companies, all of which mostly look at price and not refinement and comfort, as the person ordering them is not the person driving them.
      For Escalade vs Navigator, I guess the Escalade name indeed has more shine than that of the Navigator. Too bad, because the people I know that drive the new ‘Gator all love it, especially for its luxurious interior.
      So yeah, life is sometimes unfair 🙂

  2. The Cadillac has such a dominating presence on the road, it is unbeatable. If you go to NYC you are a no body unless you have an Escilade. It replaced the Town Car.

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