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Silver linings: Saab and Mitsubishi see sales grow in May

Thu, 02 Jun 2011 00:00:00 -0700

Despite the company’s financial troubles, Saab sales are steadily increasing in 2011, with April and May numbers up 190 percent and 121 percent, respectively, from the same months last year.

The Swedish automaker reported 385 units sold this May, versus 155 the year prior. So far this year, Saab has sold 2,765 vehicles, compared with 954 at the same point last year.

Total sales are up 179 percent through the first five months of 2011. The 9-5 Aero and the 9-5 Turbo4 models have largely contributed to Saab’s gains.

Other big winners through May are Mitsubishi, Porsche, Mini and Kia.

Keeping in line with April’s tally, Mitsubishi has shown 61 percent growth for the year so far. In particular, it has sold more than five times as many copies of the Eclipse Spyder so far in 2011 than it had last year through the end of May.

Meanwhile, Porsche continues to show a huge percentage rise in sales this year, with numbers up 82 percent in April, 50 percent in May and 47 percent for the year so far, much of that on the back of the redesigned Cayenne.

For Mini, it’s the Mini Countryman crossover reeling in buyers as the company sees a higher demand for its small cars. Mini sales were up 37 percent for May and 46 percent so far this year.

Kia sales are up 45 percent for the year. The Optima can take a bow for that, selling at twice the rate from last year.

Which brands are suffering the biggest declines so far this year? Smart, which is down 20 percent, followed by Lexus, the Chrysler Division and Lincoln.

By Michelle Koueiter