BMW tightens US luxury race as Mercedes plunges
BMW AG’s sales were flat last month, a good enough performance to tighten the race with rival Mercedes-Benz, which suffered the biggest drop among the top four luxury auto brands.
Daimler AG’s Mercedes, the U.S. leader for the last three years, saw sales slide 13 percent in February as almost all crossover and sport-utility-vehicle models slumped. BMW’s namesake brand eked out a 0.2 percent gain, thanks to a big bump from the X3 compact crossover.
Toyota Motor Corp.’s Lexus division rose 4.4 percent, the best performance among the top four premium car brands. That was powered mostly by sales of its all-new UX subcompact crossover.
Volkswagen AG’s Audi, which saw its 16-month growth streak snapped last October, logged a fifth consecutive month of declines. Sales tumbled 12 percent, marred by a 15 percent drop in Q7 SUV deliveries.