German car maker Audi has announced record Middle East sales of 7,865 vehicles sold in 2011, eclipsing 2010 by 26.8 percent. Audi said it made the marque the fastest growing premium brand in the Middle East. With 40 percent of total Middle East sales (3,137 units), the UAE remains the largest market in the region for the car manufacturer. Sales increased by 42 percent (1,250 units) in Abu Dhabi and 39 percent in Dubai (1,887 units). The UAE was followed closely by Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, where 1,522 (up 35.7 percent) and 1,060 (up 3.3 percent) vehicles were sold respectively. Audi said its newly opened dealership in Iraq contributed 128 units last year. The Audi Q7 SUV remained the brand\'s best selling model with sales of 1,588 units in 2011 while sales of the recently launched A8 L luxury sedan increased by 280.5 percent to 1,484 vehicles sold. \"Another record year of sales reinforces the Audi position in the Middle East market, as consumers increasingly choose Audi over other luxury competitors,\" said Audi Middle East Managing Director Jeff Mannering. \"In 2012, Audi will continue to capture a significant share of the premium market with new model introductions including the eagerly awaited Audi Q3 and S models, and continued investment from our dealer network.\" Construction started on three new Audi showrooms in the UAE last year, while the new Audi showroom in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia, also opened during the year.