Sales of Mercedes-Benz vehicles dropped significantly in the second quarter, the German automaker reported Monday, noting the decline was due to COVID-related lockdowns in China and related supply issues.
From April through June, the carmaker shipped 490,000 passenger cars, a 16% decrease compared to the second quarter last year. Overall sales fell 16% to 998,000 deliveries in the first half of 2022.
But the US proved a counterpoint to other markets. Mercedes-Benz retailed 98,835 vehicles for the quarter, 79,105 Mercedes-Benz passenger cars and 19,730 vans, a 6.9% increase from the same period last year.
“Our customer demand remains high, especially the desire for fully electric vehicles,” said Dimitris Psillakis, president and CEO of MBUSA.
In contrast, China, Mercedes-Benz’s largest market, saw the worst decline in second-quarter sales, falling by 25% to 163,700 vehicles.
So, what’s selling stateside?
The GLC, GLE, and C-Class model lines were among Mercedes-volume Benz’s leaders in the second quarter.
The GLC had the highest overall sales with 19,149 units, followed by the GLE with 16,458 sales. With 8,650 units, the C-Class finished third. The GLC, GLE, and GLS have generated the most volume for MBUSA so far this year with respective totals of 36,059, 32,448 and 12,394.
High-end vehicles still in demand
The all-electric Mercedes-EQ EQS Sedan sold 1,959 units in the second quarter, bringing the year-to-date total to 4,048 vehicles. Worldwide, Mercedes-EQ sales almost doubled to 23,500 units, with first half demand for Battery Electric Vehicles rising to 134% to 45,400 units, with credit going to the EQE.
Mercedes-AMG high-performance model sales in Q2 reached 7,145 units, up 2.3% over the prior quarter. Globally, sales of Mercedes-AMG, Mercedes-Maybach, G-Class, S-Class, GLS and EQS reached 71,900 units, down 16% due to supply constraints, according to Mercedes-Benz.
S-Class sales proved particularly strong, rising to 5,077 units from 373 in the second quarter of 2021, a 950.9% increase.
Sedans continue to see their sales slide
Other sedans have seen US demand rapidly declining 28.6% to 5,077 units last quarter from 7,106 vehicles during the same period last year. The story was similar with the C-Class, declining 14.3% to 8,650 units last quarter from 10,099 vehicles during the same period last year. The automaker said that sales of its core luxury vehicles declined 6% across the globe, to 275,900 vehicles.
CLA demand dropped -16.5% to 1,941 units from 2,324 year-over-year. The A-Class proved an exception, with sales increasing 10.7% to 2,905 units from 2,624 sedans in the second quarter of 2021.
But year-to-date, demand is off 31.8 percent. International sales of entry-level luxury vehicles totaled 132,600 units, down 32%, mostly due to the transition to electric vehicles. BEV sales now account for 14% of total sales, up 50% from the same period last year. Mercedes-Benz EQA deliveries increased by more than 50% to 7,000 units, while the EQB reported 5,500 sales globally.
“The electric ramp up is gaining traction,” said Seeger. “It shows that we offer compelling electric vehicles that our customers desire.”
Better sales forecast for the next six months
Separately, demand for Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned vehicles reached 33,096 units in the second quarter and 66,025 units year to date in 2022, which is the second-best performance in any year’s first half.
Going forward, the company forecasts 2022 sales of Mercedes-Benz vehicles to increase slightly from 2021.
“The expansion of our electric portfolio with three new models over the next six months, including SUV and additional AMG models, will assist our dealers in welcoming more customers to the Mercedes-Benz family,” Psillakis said.