Mercedes-Benz leads in U.S. luxury-car race

Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz jumped out to an early lead in the race for U.S. luxury car sales supremacy, posting a record January after winning the crown last year for the first time since 2013.Mercedes sold 25,527 cars and light trucks in the U.S. last month, a 3.5 percent increase from a year earlier. Following a year in which premium car models lost market share to light trucks, the brand scored significant gains with sedans last month, as the C-Class jumped 27 percent and E-Class surged 49 percent.

Dietmar Exler, chief executive officer of the Atlanta-based U.S. unit, claims that is the strong start they look for following a record year. The German automaker also took the global sales title from BMW AG’s namesake line last year. Daimler’s rivals weren’t as fortunate last month. BMW increased sale just 0.1 percent to 18,109, while Toyota Motor Corp.’s Lexus plunged 26 percent to 15,572. The results exclude BMW’s Mini cars and Daimler’s work trucks and Smart cars, because they aren’t luxury vehicles. Read more

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