According to AdAge, GM's Cadillac vaulted past Mercedes in luxury-car sales in July, outshining the once mighty Mercedes-Benz brand. Still, notwithstanding Cadillac's ride on GM's employee-discount sales rocketship, it was Mercedes's best July in history — the company selling nearly 21,000 cars — meaning its competitors' offensive moves are paying dividends, while its own efforts are falling into the "not trying hard enough" column. Lots of reasons exist for Mercedes' momentum slide among its luxury peers, not the least of which are the quality problems that have alienated customers, both existing and prospective, and led to a percentage decline in loyalty. Nonetheless, AdAge also attributes the slide to Mercedes's decline in US ad spending, which is reportedly down by $10 million since 2004.
Top-selling luxury brands in July:
MERCEDES-BENZ: BRAND IN DECLINE [AdAge (sub. req.)]
Justice Department Investigates Mercedes in Alleged Bribery Scandal [internal]