Mini sales have BMW beaming

BMW has increased its forecast for sales of the Mini as demand increases for the retro car.

BMW has increased its forecast for sales of the Mini as demand increases for the retro car.

BMW initially expected to sell only 100 000 Minis a year, but last month increased its forecast to 130 000 for 2002.

The German manufacturer now expects to sell 140 000 Minis this year.

Management board member for sales and marketing, Michael Ganal, told the Mini had been “extraordinarily successful” in the US, where sales were around 16 000 for the first nine months of the year.

He said output at the plant in Oxford, England, was at more than 150 000 units annually. But Ganal said they had not decided to increase output yet, and would “follow the market”.

Ganal would not be drawn on whether the revised forecast for the Mini would mean a change in the group’s unit sales target of about 1 million.

“Last year we sold about 880 000 BMW models. Our sales target is more than 140 000 for the Mini. We won’t say anything more specific,” he said.

Ganal said the group’s sales performance so far showed “we are doing better than average in all the major markets and that we also regularly do better than the developments in the premium segment”.

The group planned to increase the Mini range at a later stage, and a new diesel engine would be on offer.

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