BMW group global sales were up 7% in May, bringing total sales in the first five month of the year to 580,043 units, up 2.1% year on year.

This increase comes despite the slow-down in the German car market and negative growth there.

Sales in May were 128,408, up from 119,996 units in May 2006. BMW accounted for 108,488 unit sales, up 5.8% thanks to the fact that the new generations of the X5, 3 series coupé and cabrio are now available in all major markets.

BMW said that demand for these models is above expectations. Last month alone, over 11,000 X5 SUVs(11,096) were delivered to customers, up 77.3% year on year (6,257). BMW sold 7,592 3 series coupes in the month, up from 1,979 a year ago, plus 7,120 cabrios (2,727).

19,864 Minis were sold in May, bringing sales for the first five months to 85,110 units, up 3.5%. BMW said its product mix is now geared towards high value models, with the Cooper version accounting for 58% of MINI deliveries so far this year.

In May, Rolls-Royce delivered 56 Phantoms , exactly the same as in May 2006. Sales for the year to date have reached 221 cars, up from 214 a year ago.