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2010 BMW 750i – Click above for high-res image gallery

Audi outsold Mercedes Benz globally in the first quarter of 2010; a big deal considering it was the first time the four-ringed automaker had ever accomplished such a feat. But while Audi was finally able to pass its crosstown rival in sales, the German automaker is still longing for the title of the top luxury brand in the land.

Automotive News reports that BMW announced final Q1 sales of 265,809 vehicles, besting Audi by an anorexic 1,709 units for the three month period. BMW saw a global sales increase of 14 percent compared to the same period of 2009, buoyed by strong sales of its new X1 crossover and a 56 percent increase in 7 Series sales. BMW sales boss Ian Robertson said in a statement that the company intends to improve sales across the globe, adding, "We are back on our growth track in nearly all the automobile markets." And BMW isn't just hoping the market improves – the automaker is counting on an increase in sales courtesy of its new 5 Series lineup, which was launched overseas last month and arrives in the U.S. in June. BMW also has a refreshed 3 Series coupe and convertible on the way as well. With single digit growth, BMW intends to sell 1.3 million vehicles in 2010.

But while BMW pulled out the slimmest of victories in Q1, we're thinking Audi's performance during the first three months effectively puts its German competitors on notice. With a very good product lineup and a considerable foothold in China, Audi may well achieve its goal of becoming the largest luxury car maker on earth by 2015 a lot earlier than most people expected.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      My son just bought a BMW and loves it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is exactly what is wrong with the luxury car market. The point of a luxury car is that everyone doesn't have one and that is what is supposed to make you feel special. The Germans just don't get Americans. On the other hand, maybe they understand us better than we think they do.

      To me, all the "tuned" little BMW's and Audi's running around don't spell luxury, it spells every man and his dog has one. Of course, now that the new C- class Benz is the unofficial luxury car of Washington D.C. and New York City, it has become less of a luxury make and more of a higher-priced brand.

      I hear that in Europe, the small Benz is commonly used as a taxicab, but that speaks to its toughness and thrifty diesel engine. No matter what, all three; BMW, Mercedes, and Audi, are still miles ahead of the Lincoln MKZ and the Caddy CTS. Well except for maybe the CTS-V, that thing is an animal, but still won't be worth much at trade-in time.
      Scott Marc
      • 5 Years Ago
      I own both the caddy CTS, 3.4 L and a a 335i BMW. I love the bimmer and I admit, I love the caddy too. At one time BMW was miles ahead , but I dont believe that is still the case. Infact, I bought the caddy because it felt so much like the BMW, and it might even ride a bit smoother with all the great road manners. included. Aftersale value is less no doubt, but that might change soon. I still love both of these cars, and they each have their own benefits. eponym
      • 5 Years Ago
      BMW, #1 German automaker. How again did they manage to get themselves exempt from CAFE? That's just not a fair competitive environment.
        • 5 Years Ago
        CAFE is a restriction on what cars can be sold, that's true. But that doesn't mean it creates a non-competitive environment. You are not allowed to sell a car with a rocket launcher on the hood either, but yet there seems to be a functioning market in cars anyway.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I guess the Aerial Atom was so fast, you couldn't even comment on it.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Haha, i was trying to figure out the same thing. That car is veyron territory, and more fun I bet! Not to mention under 70k for all the main goodies!

        Is it street legal?
        • 5 Years Ago

        I'm pretty sure its street legal at least in the UK. That is(The Atom) the kinda of car I dream of. Pure. Focused. Not a touchscreen in sight. This car is a testament to all the haters on Autoblog that think there is no luxury in LESS. Many will argue that this car is not luxurious. Oh but i think it is. The whole car is a luxury. No features in sight. Just lightweight, as cars should be, and whole lotta fun. The analog tach and speedo are beautiful. But in the end, I'm sure people will whine because they can't plug their iphone in anywhere. This my friends is an AUTOMOBILE!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Go Audi.
      Jeff Moore
      • 5 Years Ago
      CAFE should be abolished now!
      • 5 Years Ago
      I went auto shopping on December 30,2009. It ws an experience. BMW would not budge on the price. I have an attorney friend who had an Audi and has rebuilt it since he has owned it,so I stayed away from Audi. I then went to Mercedes on 12/31/2010 and after a few minutes of haggling i bought a 2010 Mercedes ML350 SUV. My intention was to buy a 2010 E 350 but after driving the SUV and it's every conceivable extras I decided on he SUV.They took off $10,000 ( last day of the month. It was snowing heavily that day). And I received totally free service for 3 years. And the service at this dealer is 10 stars easily.They just can't do enough for you. They also went to my insurance company and then to the RMV to regiister the auto for me.They have free pickup Pick up and delivery. Free loaners etc. I took delivery that day per orders of my CPA. It was a very pleasant experience. I hate to haggle and I will walk out on dealers.Mercedes dealers run a high class operation.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Pretty interesting, even more interesting when you take into account bmw's only other brad is RR while audi does tons of work (and most of the engineering) for lamborghini, bentley and bugatti. Anywho, they should beat bmw before 2015, my money is on 2012, though it's not as important as how profitable either brand are in relation to their total number of units shifted. hint, audi's been winning there for a while.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Every time I see the new 5 series, I like it even less. I might trade my A4 in towards a 535i Bangle. I just don't like the new look. Hooray for Audi! If I could find a CPO A6 with desired features, I might stay with the brand. But anything German really will do.
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