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Statement by Matthias Wissmann, President of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), at the VDA's Press Conference in Detroit on 14 January, 2013

Mercedes-Benz CLA 2013

BERLIN and DETROITJanuary 14, 2013:

The results from the automotive year 2012 here in the USA are positive through and through for the German manufacturers and suppliers. We are especially delighted that in 2012, in both the passenger car and the light truck segments the German manufacturers grew faster than the relevant US markets. For example, the German manufacturers increased their 2012 car sales by a good 22 per cent to 920,400 units, while the total passenger car market in the US expanded by nearly 19 per cent, to a little over 7.2 million units. This means that in the passenger car segment we have pushed up our market share to 12.7 per cent.

In light trucks, the German OEMs strongly increased their sales last year by over 19 per cent to 345,000 units. They therefore grew more than twice as much as the overall light truck market, which recorded a rise of just over 8 per cent, to 7.2 million units.

Overall, the US light vehicles market (passenger cars and light trucks) expanded in 2012 by a good 13 per cent to over 14.4 million light vehicles. The German brands also turned in a good result in terms of the overall figures: in 2012 they pushed up their sales of light vehicles by over 21 per cent to around 1.27 million units. Their share of the light vehicle market increased by 0.6 percentage points to reach 8.8 per cent.

For our manufacturers the automotive year 2012 was therefore the most successful year ever on the US market. All the German brands that are active here recorded double-digit rises in their light vehicle sales.