Mercedes-Benz has pipped its key rivals, including BMW, to claim the title of America's best-selling luxury car brand for the first time since 1999.
Ending 2013 with a record 312,528 sales (up 14 per cent from 2012), Mercedes-Benz took the win off 2012 and 2011 victor BMW by 3248 units, despite the Bavarian car maker enjoying 10 per cent sales growth over 2012 and breaking its previous sales record set in 2007.
Industry journal Automotive News reports that while the sale of 14,113 CLA-Class sedans - a vehicle for which BMW has no direct competitor - was a significant factor in the yearly tally, both the E- and S-Class also outsold their BMW 5 and 7 Series competitors.
Before BMW’s twin crowns, Lexus dominated the top spot for an impressive 11 consecutive years. For 2013 the premium Japanese marque completed the podium, finishing with 273,847 units (up 12 per cent).
Locally 2013 proved Mercedes-Benz Australia’s most successful year in its 55-year history with sales up 27 per cent to 23,106 (excluding commercial vehicles). BMW finished its year at 20,522 (up 11.5 per cent), with Audi (16,009; up 10.1 per cent) easily accounting for Lexus (6920; up 1.2 per cent) to round out our top three.