Despite a national economy that has struggled all year long and the enduring effects of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, many in the autoindustry think that the luxury car segment is regaining some of the momentum it had in 2000, according to the Dallas Morning News
."There's trend growth in the segment again,"said Paul Taylor, chief economist of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). "Earlier in the year, it was up and back down with the false recovery of the market. But now, I think it is showing some realbounce-back."Although the overall luxury-car segment - which includes sedans, coupes, and sport utility vehicles whose prices start at about $40,000 - is still down about 7 percent for the year, sales increased substantially in October, according to dealers.Most luxury brands offered few incentives during the zero percent hooopla in October, but sales nonetheless shot up 14.2 percent from the previous month, Taylor said.Luxury-car sales will probably account for less than 10 percent of new-vehicle sales this year, but some analysts view them as a good barometer of consumer confidence and capability.