Demand for MINI brand automobiles remained high in May. MINI USA reported that May 2005 sales jumped 16 percent, with 3,878 cars compared to 3,355 sold a year ago. Sales of MINI automobiles in the first five months of 2005 are up 23 percent with sales of 18,372 cars over the 14,916 cars reported in 2004.

In contrast to MINI, BMW lost some sales ground due to the production ramp-up of the new 3 series:

BMW of North America, LLC reported a 5.7 percent dip in May sales of automobiles and Sports Activity Vehicles, to 23,048 vehicles compared to the 24,432 reported last May. The all-new 2006 3 Series went on sale May 6th and while demand for the two new 3 Series sedans is strong, inventory is still low as production ramps up.

The BMW Group (BMW and MINI brands combined) reported year-to-date sales of 117,844 vehicles, an increase of 2 percent compared to the 115,737 vehicles sold that month in 2004. The BMW Group also reported May sales of 26,926 vehicles, down 3.1 percent from 27,787 sold in the same period of 2004.