Reuters reports

today that Mercedes Car Group managed to post a 1.3 percent increase in unit sales, despite a decline of 18.8 percent in sales of its Smart brand. Strong demand for the Mercedes-Benz brand grew 4.6 percent, even though sales in the German market fell 5.9 percent and U.S. sales remained stagnant.

Mercedes-Benz is doing well with good demand for its A-class compact and the new B-class sport wagon and M-class SUV. The September debut of the S-class should help sales going forward, as will the R-class roll-out in the U.S. market.

Taking a page from the Mitsubishi playbook, Smart is offering German buyers free fuel for a year, in efforts to stimulate sales of its ForFour model.

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