The strong sales of the X5 and the new 2 Series Active Tourer have helped BMW stay at the top of the worldwide premium sales.

BMW Group, which includes BMW, MINI, and Rolls-Royce, stayed ahead of rivals Audi AG and Mercedes-Benz.

BMW said Tuesday that it sold 451,576 cars in the three months to March, an increase of 5.4 percent from a year earlier. The strongest sales growth was in the U.S., where sales rose 8.4 percent in the first quarter. BMW brand sales were up 5.8 percent in Europe and 7.6 percent in China.


“With the momentum provided by the range of new products we are bringing out this year, I am confident we will achieve our target of delivering more vehicles to customers this year than ever before,” said Ian Robertson, BMW board member in charge of global sales and marketing.

Audi sold 438,250 cars in the first three months of the year, an increase of 6.1 percent, 14 percent in the US. The positive results were aided by the strong sales of its Q5 SUV.

Mercedes-Benz sold 429,602 of its namesake brand cars in the first three months of the year, an increase of 14.8 percent from a year ago. In Europe, the sales increased 16 percent, while China showed a 16.6 percent improvement.