Mercedes-Benz offers largest luxury-car discounts in China image

Mercedes-Benz and BMW dealers in China offered larger discounts on some models last month as the local economy slows.

Mercedes’ C200 sedan had an average price 16 percent below the manufacturer’s recommended price last month, compared with 14 percent in October and 3.4 percent at the launch in July, according to China Auto Market.

BMW dealers also offered larger discounts on the 2012 320i sedan, on average 11 percent below the suggested price, more than triple the initial discount for the 2011 model. German luxury-car manufacturers are focusing on the Chinese market to increase deliveries as European demand is declining.

“Competition is getting fierce, especially in the entry-level luxury car segment. BMW, Mercedes and Audi are expanding their capacity in China and the majority of that capacity is used to make the entry-level models, and that’s increasing the competition,” John Zeng, LMC Automotive Asia Pacific director was quoted by Bloomberg. China’s 2011 vehicle sales may rise the least in 13 years, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

Mercedes-Benz’s entry-level C200 sedan sold at 292,800 yuan ($46,122) last month, compared with the recommended price of 348,000 yuan ($54,817), according to China Auto Market. Luxury car sales growth is forecast to slow to 16 percent in 2012, down from the 41 percent increase in the first 10 months of 2011.