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Helped by its best September ever, Lexus pulled closer to BMW for the No. 2 spot in the luxury sales race for 2017, while Mercedes-Benz stayed solidly on top despite a September skid in sales.

Mercedes' sales, excluding the Sprinter and Metris commercial vans, declined 1.7 percent in September to 29,008 vehicles. Mercedes-Benz USA CEO Dietmar Exler said last month's sales were disrupted by the hurricanes that affected Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

Despite the disruption, the brand's SUV and crossover sales are "seeing continued positive development," Exler said in a statement, with the GLE and GLC, plus the C class, leading Mercedes in volume in September.

"We expect to regain momentum in the final quarter of the year with the launch of the new S-Class sedan, AMG models and continued demand for our SUV lineup," Exler said.

Even with the September dip, Mercedes remains solidly in the luxury leadership spot with 242,250 luxury vehicles sold through the first nine months of 2017, more than 22,000 vehicles ahead of BMW.
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