* Q1 EPS $0.97 vs est $0.88
* Q1 rev $1.66 bln vs est $1.59 bln
* New-vehicle sales up 16 pct to $912.6 mln
* Used-vehicle retail sales up 28 pct to $415 mln (Adds details, indutry background)
April 26 (Reuters) -Automotive, one of the largest U.S. retail auto dealer groups, posted its biggest quarterly profit ever as sales of new vehicles surged and pricing improved.
's market-topping results follow strong performances from peers Inc and Inc as dealers benefit from recovering U.S. auto sales.
Group 1 said it expects new vehicle industry sales of 14.5 million units in 2012.
The company is heavily reliant onMotor for its sales. In the first quarter, Toyota's new-vehicle sales rose 12 percent.
Houston-based Group 1's revenue from new vehicles rose 16 percent to $912.6 million, while sales of its smaller used-vehicle retail segment jumped 28 percent.
January-March net income rose to $23.1 million, or 97 cents per share, from $15.4 million, or 64 cents per share, a year ago.
Revenue rose 18 percent to $1.66 billion.
Analysts had expected a profit of 88 cents on revenue of $1.59 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Shares of the company, which is valued at $1.29 billion, closed at $57.95 on Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Sagarika Jaisinghani in Bangalore; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)