As they race for the U.S. luxury sales crown, the spirited competition between BMW and Mercedes-Benz was on display at the Automotive News Marketing Seminar last week in Manhattan.
Mercedes has led the race all year and was about 3,800 units ahead through August.
"We're the No. 1 luxury brand," Mercedes-Benz USA marketing boss Bernie Glaser boasted -- for the third time -- during a presentation and panel discussion with other executives.
"It's been a long time since you could say that," replied Dan Creed, his counterpart at BMW of North America, who was sitting next to Glaser on stage.
"But it feels so good," said Glaser, a big smile on his face.
BMW beat Mercedes-Benz in 2011 by 2,715 units, 247,907 to 245,192, ending Lexus' 11-year reign atop the U.S. luxury rankings. Mercedes won the title once, in 1999, before ceding the U.S. crown to Lexus.