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by Tim Beissmann

Lamborghini is forecasting tough times until 2011 with an expected global sales reduction of 35 per cent in 2009.

Lambo CEO, Stephan Winkelmann, confirmed that 2009 had been a horror year for the Italian supercar company.

“It was tough, it’s still tough. Everything you see has been much worse than forecast.

“2011 will be a recovery, but we first have to see if the year 2010 will be another very tough year for the industry,” he said.

Lamborghini sold 2430 cars in 2008 and sales for the first 10 months of this year have dropped by 37 per cent, but Winkelmann still expects to achieve a full-year pre-tax profit.

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In Australia, Lambo sales are down 42.5 per cent through the first 11 months of the year, shifting just 23 units compared to last year’s 40.

But China is looming as somewhat of a saviour with 80 sales forecast by the end of 2009 and a predicted expansion in the coming years to become one of Lamborghini’s largest export markets.

Meanwhile, BMW CEO, Norbert Reithofer, says despite a single-figure percentage sales increase in November, he expects year end volume of BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce to fall by 10-15 per cent.

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Last year the company sold 1.44 million vehicles but will this year finish closer to 1.25 million.

BMW Australia is outperforming international markets, however.

BMW is down just 3.1 per cent (compared to the industry average of 9.3 per cent) year-to-date, led by strong sales of the 1 Series Coupe/Convertible, 3 Series, 7 Series, X6 and Z4.

November sales rose by 28.9 per cent compared to 2008, selling 1717 vehicles in total.

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MINI is also performing better than average with Cabrio sales up 6.4 per cent for the year and November sales across the range up almost 40 per cent to 192.

Rolls-Royce has been the hardest hit in Australia, with just nine Phantoms finding homes in 2009 compared to 16 in 2008, and none in November.




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