The U.S. luxury sales race is shaping up to be another barnburner in 2015.
BMW was tops in 2014, but Mercedes-Benz -- last year's No. 2 -- leads after two months. Meanwhile, Lexus has slipped ahead of BMW into second place among luxury brands.
But the three brands are tightly packed. Lexus sales rose 22 percent in February and are up 26 percent after two months to 46,126. Mercedes sales have risen 6.7 percent for the year to 48,235, and BMW is up 9.7 percent to 44,182.
Lexus has benefited from the addition of its new small crossover, the NX. Sales of the RX, Lexus' best-seller, totaled 6,490 in February, up 14 percent.
"The NX continues to exceed our targets," said Jeff Bracken, Lexus general manager.
He said many NX buyers are new to the brand and are younger than typical Lexus customers.
"To attract folks who are new to the brand -- that's the win for us," he said. He said some conquests are coming from German luxury brands, but most are coming from other Japanese makes.
-- Neal Boudette and staff reports