US sales 2017 first half: Sports Large and Exotics segment

Lexus LC enjoys a strong market debut to rank fourth in Q2’17 standings, while Porsche 911 continues to lose salesUS large sportsSales of Large Sports Cars and Exotics fell by 2.6% in the second quarter of 2017, a slower pace of decline than the 10.4% registered in 2016, or the 5.5% registered in the first quarter of the year. Could this be a sign that the segment is going through a bit of a resurgence? As we previously mentioned, this segment had undergone a huge growth in years past, so the recent declines come from a heady height, and suggest the segment may simply be stabilizing at a sort of “good times” average size, before once again shrinking drastically when the next recession hits (such is the fate of a segment where most cars sell for well over $100,000).

Highlights for the first half of 2017:

Lexus LC
  • Chevrolet Corvette remains the undisputed champion of this segment, despite its sales falling a further 4.8% in the second quarter of 2017, resulting in a compound drop of 6.6%
  • Unlike the Corvette, Porsche 911 saw its sales decline accelerate, with sales drop in the second quarter of 2017 reaching 17.1%, providing further ammunition to those who say that Porsche should not have gone all-turbo with its models
  • No such worries for Jaguar F-Type, whose sales rose a remarkable 29.5% in the Q2’17, helped by the introduction of four-wheel-drive versions over the course of the past year
  • The most remarkable performance in the segment came probably from the Lexus LC, which came out of nowhere to grab fifth in the YTD standings despite only coming to the market in the second quarter, and actually outsold the Mercedes-Benz SL over this period
  • Sales of the new Audi R8 rose by 84%, and the model may yet pass 1,000 sales in 2017, which would be only the second time it had done so (it last did it in 2011)
  • Other models that did well include the run-out Dodge Viper (up 35%), the facelifted Nissan GT-R (sales up 18%) and Bentley Continental GT (sales up 15%)
  • Also, after a slow start, Acura NSX is starting to gain traction, and did well enough to outsell fellow electrified supercar, the BMW i8, which also recorded by far the largest sales drop in the segment, with sales falling by almost two thirds

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