In April, U.S. sales of Mercedes vehicles rose to 22,336 (24%) giving the Stuttgart-based automaker a lead for the year over BMW which sold 21,062 vehicles in the same month.

In the first quarter of the year, BMW had a slight lead over Mercedes, with 36 vehicles sold more than its competitor.

For the year, Mercedes sales are up 17 percent or 83,849 units, giving them a lead of 1,238 units over BMW which sales are up 16 percent this year.

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Lexus slowly recovers with 2.6 percent sales increase to 66,647 during the first four months of the year.

Specialists like Jesse Toprak, an analyst with, says that this will be a close race between the two German premium automakers. “You’re going to see this back-and-fourth for the rest of the year.”

BMW’s sales were positively influenced by the launch of the new 2012 3 Series, while Mercedes sales were helped by deliveries of the updated C-Class sedan, up 23 percent, and M-Class sport-utility vehicle, up 54 percent

The U.S. premium automaker, Cadillac, fell 25 percent to 9,851 in April.

[Source: Bloomberg]