April 3, 2012

State of Alabama
Press Release: Alabama Department of Commerce

Mercedes-Benz: U.S. Sales Accelerate for M-Class

The Birmingham News

BIRMINGHAM -- U.S. sales of the Alabama-made Mercedes-Benz M-Class -- the vehicle that gave birth to the state's auto industry -- soared last month, the German automaker said today.

Mercedes said its U.S. dealers sold 4,070 M-Class vehicles in March, up 45.8 percent from the same month in 2011. The sport utility vehicle, which made its debut in 1997 and has gone through several updates, was the automaker's third best-selling vehicle last month, trailing the C-Class and E-Class sedans.

So far this year, Mercedes said it has sold 11,480 M-Class SUVs in the U.S. -- an increase of 59.4 percent from a year ago.

The company also makes the GL-Class full-size sport utility and the R-Class crossover vehicle at its plant in Vance. March sales in the U.S. for the GL-Class totaled 1,969, almost even with the previous year. Sales of the R-Class dropped 45.7 percent to 144. (Sales of the slow-selling vehicle are being halted in the U.S.

Mercedes said its U.S. sales rose 7.7 percent in March to 23,134, a record for the month.

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