Lexus Expects Sales to Increase in 2013, Despite Higher Taxes image

Toyota plans to boost sales of its Lexus brand in 2013, even if the wealthy will have to pay higher taxes due to the federal budget deal.

From January to October Lexus’ sales increased 24%, and Toyota expects an increase of 10% in 2013, according to an interview given at the L.A. Auto Show by Mark Templin, who is also head of the brand in the region. He added that the demand for luxury vehicles will grow much faster than the industrywide pace, despite the change in tax rates.

“I think that we and everyone else project that we’re still going to see good consistent growth in the industry,” Templin said. “Our wealthy clients have remained that way and they’ve been shown to be pretty resilient.”

The biggest market for Lexus models remains the US, where the automaker sells at least half of the brand’s global volume. Through October sales increased 14% and for November Toyota is expected to report a raise of 12%. Sales of luxury cars, including Lexus, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, increased 10% through October.

“We all project that luxury will grow faster than the rest of the market,” Templin said. “It didn’t happen in the first half of the year, but it’s starting to show again, and the projections for the future still show that’s the case.”