Group sales fell to €50.68 billion, according to a statement that provided provisional results.
Final results are to be published on March 17, and "we are assured of a pre-tax profit as expected," BMW boss Norbert Reithofer said in a statement.
BMW's sales were particularly weak in its auto division, which posted a drop of 10.3 percent to €43.73 billion, while the finance unit saw a slight increase to €15.79 billion.
Germany's leading high-end automobile group is placing hopes for this year in a new Series 5 sedan expected to be released in March.
Earlier this month, BMW said 2009 unit sales had fallen by 10.4 percent to 1.29 million vehicles despite a pick-up in the second half of the year.