BMW Gets Busy, Lexus Loses Out

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BMW and Mercedes-Benz both saw large sales increases over the past few months, while Lexus lost it's hold on the top spot in luxury car sales.

Lexus has lost the top spot as the best-selling luxury car brand in the U.S. The brand has suffered a 17 percent loss in sales dropping to around 190,000 units during 2011. All the Lexus models (with the exception of the RX350 built in Ontario, Canada) are sourced from Japan. Japan has suffered terrible natural disasters this year which has been the key factor attributed to the slowing of production. It's not all doom and gloom for Lexus though, as the Japanese plants are slowly recovering back to 100 percent.

Caution remains however, as Aaron Bragman of IHS Automotive Insight, believes that even at full capacity, the brand will struggle to stay in the top spot. "Like Toyota, they've lost their momentum," he says. "A lot of their dealers are afraid they will become the next Buick." BMW, on the other hand, has been cleaning up as of late. The German automaker saw a 16 percent increase in global sales last month making it BMW's best June ever. BMW sold 165,855 vehicles last month while their best numbers come from the MINI brand.

In the U.S. they saw a 15 percent increase in sales while India, Turkey and Brazil also saw numbers rise. Mercedes-Benz, BMW's closest rival, saw a relatively modest increase by 6.5 percent across the globe. The numbers totaled 120,510 units sold for its passenger car division and optimism is afoot, with expectations that 2011 could be a record breaking year.

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