The Nintendo Wii U is currently running second in the next-gen console race, according to Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime.
Asked during an interview at E3 2014 last week whether the Wii U could ever outsell the PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, Fils-Aime indicated that it already has.
"The dirty little secret is if you look at life-to-date numbers, between Sony and Nintendo they'd be pretty close in terms of PS4 vs. Wii U, with Xbox coming in third place," Fils-Aime told The Seattle Times.
"I think it's going to be a three-horse race for the balance of this cycle."
The executive also said that Nintendo does not believe it will need to release a new console following the less than stellar performance of the Wii U since its launch.
"We think that the Wii U has a long and vibrant life in front of it," he said. "What it needs are games like Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros Wii U and Splatoon - those types of games that can really drive the installed base. We believe if we can do that effectively the Wii U has a long and robust life."
Fils-Aime also conceded that the Wii U's launch line-up was not as strong as it could have been, largely due to delays on Pikmin 3 and Wonderful 101.
"The interesting point there is that when we announced the Wii U and when we announced all of the launch details, we fully expected games like Wii Fit U, Pikmin, the The Wonderful 101 to be in the launch window," he said.
"The Nintendo quality bar is really what kept us from launching those games potentially in February or March and so that's what created the lack of software during that initial launch phase."
While Nintendo managed to sell only 310,000 Wii U systems in the fourth financial quarter, sales have picked up since the release of Mario Kart 8 earlier this month. The game's release has lead to quadrupled Wii U sales in the US and a 666 per cent increase in sales in the UK.