The Federal Government’s $150,000 instant asset tax write-off and cancelled overseas holidays have delivered a windfall to German and Japanese luxury brands.
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Popular luxury brands Audi, BMW, Mercedes and Lexus ended a two-year sales slump in June, posting massive gains as the overall market remained in decline.

Mercedes posted its best monthly sales result in its history in Australia – reporting 4437 cars as sold, an increase of 31.4 per cent compared to the same month last year.

Rival German brands BMW reported 3307 vehicles as sold (32 per cent increase) and Audi made the biggest gain (84 per cent increase) but ranked third among the trio with 2027 sales.

Japanese luxury brand Lexus reported 1560 vehicles as sold (60 per cent increase), for its best month on record.

While much attention was focussed on the ute and van market taking advantage of the Federal Government’s $150,000 instant asset write-off, dealers selling prestige vehicles have told CarAdvice the luxury sector also got a significant boost.

A major metropolitan dealer for one of Australia’s biggest prestige marques, speaking on condition of anonymity as they are not authorised to comment on behalf of the brands they sell, told CarAdvice a lot of customers are treating themselves to a new car rather than an international holiday.

“In our area a lot of our customers have family overseas and they travel two or three times year to visit them,” the prestige dealer said.

“That can quickly add up to $20,000 to $100,000. But with international travel restrictions for the next 12 months, a lot of discretionary spending is moving away from travel and into automotive.”

He said in some cases buyers are saying “I used to drive a Mazda, now I can afford Mercedes, or they’ve moved up to a more expensive model within their favourite brand.”

However, as with mainstream car brands, dealers who sell prestige vehicles remain cautious about the coming months amid the expected stock shortages, following temporary factory shutdowns during the peak of the pandemic.

“A lot of dealers didn’t know how long and how deep COVID was going to continue for, so we really held back on how many cars we ordered, so a lot are going to be short (on inventory) until they can get more stock,” the prestige dealer said.