Mercedes-Benz posted a 7-percent year-on-year increase in car sales in the United States in September 2012 to 23,156 vehicles. Mercedes’ strong performance in September allowed the carmaker to widen its nine-month lead over nearest rival BMW brand to 5,221 units in the quest to grab the crown as the best-selling luxury car brand in the US.
Mercedes’ feat in the US is partly attributed to the updated versions of its C-class compact sedan and GLK compact sport-utility vehicle. Its fellow German carmaker and rival BMW, on the other hand, just logged a 0.1-percent year-on-year increase in car sales in the US to 21,761 units. Lexus, Toyota’s luxury brand, managed to record a 36-percent jump in US sales to 20,386 vehicles.
According to Mercedes, it posted a 13-percent year-on-year increase in sales in the US for the first nine months of 2012 to 191,618 units. BMW, meanwhile, recorded a 4.9 percent hike to 186,397 for the same period. Mercedes’ sales figures, however, do not include the results for Daimler's cargo vans and Smart cars and BMW's Mini brand, since they are not luxury vehicles.
According to Jesse Toprak, an industry analyst with TrueCar.com, Mercedes managed to widen its lead over BMW owing to the combination of the success of its new products and continued aggressive leasing special offerings. Mercedes and BMW are currently neck-to-neck in the race to become the No. 1 luxury auto brand in terms of sales in the US.
BMW was the top-selling luxury car brand in the US in 2011, overtaking Lexus that is badly hit by inventory problems caused by natural disasters in Asia. Lexus had been the best-selling luxury brand in the US for 11 years to 2010. Mercedes’ chief U.S. operations, Steve Cannon, is optimistic of the carmaker’s chances to “have a nice finish” for 2012.