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Mercedes-Benz just had its best month of car sales in history

Luxury car maker Mercedes Benz sold over 142,000 cars in September, its biggest month ever, according to the German paper Bild (link in German). A spokeswoman for Daimler, which owns Mercedes, said the figures in the Bild report were “in the right ballpark” but that official sales figures would be released on Friday, Reuters reported.

Mercedes appears to be making headway in two of the world’s most important car markets. According to Bild, the surge in sales was driven by demand for the A, C, and CLA class cars in the US and China.

Mercedes, as well as BMW and other car brands, have been targeting less affluent US customers with cheaper luxury models. That seems to be working. The Mercedes CLA coupe, the brand’s first to be sold in the US for under $30,000, sold over 2,300 units in its first week on sale.

Getting a boost in China would be especially good news for Mercedes, which has trailed its rivals BMW and Volkswagen there for years. It would also help justify its recent plan to spend €2 billion ($2.67 billion) opening more stores in smaller and western Chinese cities.

China, the world’s largest auto market, has seen its once-explosive growth of luxury car sales flatten recently. Sales of cars costing more than 2 million renminbi ($327,000) dropped to 8,000 last year, compared to 9,000 in 2011, according to research firm A.T. Kearney.

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