The chief executive of Mercedes-Benz USA is confident that the premium brand will be able to steal the US luxury sales crown from BMW this year. Following a presentation at an event honoring the 2013 Automotive News 100 Best Dealerships To Work For, Steve Cannon said that Mercedes will have a great year. He added that natural sales and great execution would be key to beating BMW, which took the crown in 2012. Mercedes was well ahead of BMW before December 2012 by around 1,800 units. BMW, however, managed to outsell Mercedes by over 9,000 units in December 2012, enabling it to capture the luxury crown for the second straight year. The situation this year is almost similar, with Mercedes holding onto a lead of less than 3,000 units through September.
Cannon, however, said that Mercedes would be able to maintain its current lead -- thanks to expected sales of the redesigned S-Class sedan and the new CLA compact sedan – even without offering late-year incentives.
Cannon remarked that Mercedes will not have a "last-minute sale" to outsell BMW this year. BMW and Mercedes both traded insults after the former topped its rival with its December surge.
Mercedes officials accused BMW of padding sales figures by including units that dealers acquired as loaner vehicles. BMW, however, denied the accusation, saying that it was Mercedes who has done so in the past. [source: automotive news - sub. required]