BMW grabbed a 4,808-vehicle lead over Lexus in the first nine months, putting the German marque on track to claim the U.S. luxury sales crown for a third consecutive year.
In the latest quarter, BMW sold 75,619 vehicles, up 8.7 percent. Light trucks accounted for 60 percent of BMW's quarterly sales.
BMW also extended its lead over rival Mercedes-Benz for the year, with a nearly 28,000-vehicle advantage as of the end of September.
But even amid tightening inventories around the industry, total U.S. luxury sales inched 0.9 percent higher to 514,110 cars and light trucks in the third quarter, compared with a 13 percent decline for the broader industry.
For the nine-month period, luxury sales rose 26 percent.
Mercedes continues to lose ground as the automaker grapples with production shortfalls caused by tight semiconductor supplies. It had been the luxury segment leader after the first quarter but was topped by BMW in the second quarter.
As its third-quarter U.S. deliveries tumbled 21 percent to 55,130, Mercedes stands in third place, behind BMW and Lexus.
Inventory is at an all-time low, said Jeff Aiosa, owner of Mercedes-Benz of New London in Connecticut. The dealer said he has roughly a 10-day supply.
"We are in the eye of the storm," Aiosa said.