BMW facing excess inventory thanks to push for luxury brand crown
BMW is facing a surplus of depreciating inventory on dealer lots, particularly for its 3-Series sedan.
The oversupply comes from a push last year to claim the “best-selling luxury brand” title, one that itself was not immune from controversy. The move seems to have bit BMW in the bustle butt for the first quarter of 2016, as dealers sitting on excess inventory have been slow to order new cars. According to the Automotive News Data Center, BMW’s volume has declined 9.4 percent for the first quarter, putting its sales numbers behind both Lexus and Mercedes-Benz.
In particular, reports Automotive News, the 3-Series sedan, 6-Series coupe and convertible, and i3 have seen especially slow demand. To remedy the situation, BMW will refocus on selling crossovers like the X5. “We are adjusting our production plans and reallocating more SUVs to the US,” said CFO Friedrich Eichiner, who wants 40 percent of all BMWs sold in North America to be crossovers.
Alexander Bilgeri, VP of communications for BMW North America, added that BMW’s $1 billion expansion of its Spartansburg, South Carolina plant will also increase crossover supply. The factory will be capable of churning out 450,000 cars per year.