There are the Big 2, the Detroit 3, the Big 6, the Japanese 3. Every one of them means something to those who earn their bread by watching sales trends in the auto industry. A gain or loss of a tenth of a point of market share is a cause for great rejoicing or deep gloom.
But how about the Exotic 8? Never heard of them? It's not surprising. They don't make much of a splash in the sea of auto sales.
They are a group of very high-priced, very low-volume motor cars: Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Lotus and Aston Martin from England; Ferrari, Maserati and Lamborghini from Italy; and Maybach from Germany. Their sales made up seven-tenths of 1 percent of the first-half total in the United States.
First-half sales totaled 5,832. But that was up 41.3 percent from the first half of 2005.
The bigger groups should have such an increase. More impressive, the Exotic 8 brought in nearly $927 million to their 274 dealers, an average of $158,863 per sale and $3.4 million per dealership.
By make, first-half volume for the Exotic 8 was: Bentley, 1,990; Lotus, 1,260; Maserati, 1,090; Ferrari, 696; Lamborghini, 354; Aston Martin, 222; Rolls-Royce, 160; and Maybach, 60.