The German auto industry supports talks to reduce auto tariffs between the USA and European Union, but only as part of a larger trade negotiation.
He also said that the anticipation of tariffs boosted demand as customers sought to snap up motorcycles before prices rise.
The EU sent nearly $50bn in vehicles and auto parts to the United States past year, with roughly half coming from Germany.
"We've never seen anything like this", said Mary Lovely, a Syracuse University economist who studies global trade - at least not since countries tried to wall themselves off from foreign competition during the Great Depression.
In response to Mr Trump's tariffs on European steel and aluminium, the EU has imposed tariffs on imports of USA cranberries, orange juice, sweetcorn, peanut butter, bourbon whiskey, cigarettes, cigars, cheroots (a type of thin cigar), cosmetics, motorbikes, boats, jeans, leather footwear, swimwear, underwear and steel products.
Earlier in the week, news reports emerged that Daimler, which produces Mercedes-Benz autos, and other German automakers were pitching a reciprocal elimination of tariffs.
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"Clarity [is] still lacking about how far things will ultimately go between [the] USA and China and the potential ripple effect for world trade", said financial analyst Mike van Dulken.
China is also planning to impose additional tariffs of 25% on chemical products, medical equipment and energy imported from the United States, with a value equalling US$16bn.
Although a large portion of the US's most popular auto models, including those from foreign brands (such as the upcoming BMW X7), are already manufactured within its borders, many are imported from other countries. Higher tariffs "would virtually eliminate" USA demand, he said.
This latest tit-for-tat step marks a further stage of escalation in the mounting trade war between the USA, its closest allies and China since Mr Trump ignited a trade conflict with metals levies.
Trump already hit Europe with steel and aluminum tariffs, angering European Union leaders and triggering retaliation.
Most of the cars imported to the United States from Europe are luxury models.
Mercedes is expected to sell about 20,000 convertibles this year in the United States and BMW fewer than 16,000, LMC projected. Mattes also said German automakers could not subsist without access to the USA market.
Sales to the USA fell 10 percent to 494,000 vehicles, while Germany automakers produced 804,000 vehicles in the United States previous year.
The US followed a similar process for the steel and aluminium industry, which led it to impose tariffs on the foreign metals this spring. It accounts for 5 percent of VW brand sales and 12 percent of Audi sales.