In the midst of a recession and with rumors of default on the national debt, the U.S. economy is in sorry shape, and Americans are feeling the pressure that comes with such times. However, one surprising industry is doing exceptionally well this year, knocking out last year’s figures and setting all-time records.
The luxury auto industry, an old favorite of Haute Living’s, is doing extremely well both in the United States and abroad. Mercedes-Benz has sold more models in the first half of 2011 than in any previous year, hitting the half-year mark with a total of 610,531 models sold. Executives have their sights set on a whopping 1.3 models sold by the end of the year, which would be an all-time record for the German company.
Both Mercedes-Benz and Audi USA set a record in the last quarter, with Audi selling more in the last quarter than ever before in the U.S. BMW is doing even better, surpassing both Audi USA and Mercedes-Benz in sales and easily on track to be the top-selling luxury auto brand in the U.S. this year.
Mercedes, however, reports that most of its growth is coming not from within the U.S., but from developing BRIC countries, namely China. In the first half of this year, affluent Chinese bought 52 percent more models than in the first half of last year.
Audi, on the other hand, is hitting its stride in India, so far this year selling more than double the vehicles it sold in the first half of last year, setting an all-time high for the company.