Mercedes-Benz USA, helped by its 24-percent gain in April regained the U.S. luxury-vehicle sales lead for the year over BMW and Audi.
The German automaker reported April sales of 22, 336 for its Mercedes-Benz models, a 23.8 % improvement over April 2011, delivering a year-to-date total of 83,849 new vehicles to customers, up 17.5%.
On the same time BMW deliveries increased 12 percent to 21,062.
Mercedes and BMW, which overtook Lexus last year to become the top-selling luxury brand in the U.S., are competing for the 2012 sales crown.
The April burst erased BMW’s first-quarter lead of 36 units and now sees Mercedes-Benz on top by 1,238 vehicles. Experts say that we could be in for a year-long back-and-forth between the two luxury brands, with Lexus expected to remain a distant third.
In addition, Bloomberg reports that Mercedes-Benz may overtake Audi globally for the number two position in 2015.
Forecasts from the Center of Automotive Research at the University of Duisberg-Essen have BMW selling 1.76 million vehicles in 2015, followed by Mercedes Benz (1.68 million) and Audi (1.63 million).
That will put Mercedes-Benz within striking distance of its well-publicized goal to become the world’s best-selling luxury automaker again by the end of the decade.