Toyota, Subaru and Hyundai saw sales declines, but those results don’t necessarily mean the sales recovery is stalling, given a low number of selling days in November.
Automakers reported better-than-expected third-quarter U.S. auto sales Thursday, pointing to strong demand for trucks and a boost from low interest rates. Auto giants General Motors, Fiat Chrysler and Toyota saw vehicle sales fall about 10% for the quarter ending Sept. 30, but that decline was smaller than analyst estimates and a big improvement from the second quarter when coronavirus restrictions were at their most severe.
U.S. vehicle sales in the second quarter for General Motors, Toyota Motor and Fiat Chrysler plunged by more than 30% as the coronavirus caused consumers to stay at home and dealerships and factories to shutter.
Fears of a U.S. sales slowdown in auto showrooms due to the coronavirus outbreak that has spread globally are appearing in analysts’ forecasts, but industry executives said the pandemic has yet to affect demand or factory production.
Projections for the seasonally adjusted, annualized selling rate in July range from 16.5 million to 16.7 million. Experts are split on whether an extra selling day will boost sales ahead of last year’s level.
U.S. sales of cars and light trucks fell 0.3% in May, but the month still felt like a winner for many industry participants as a big Memorial Day weekend erased fears of a much bigger drop after a slow start to the year.
Any hopes for a “spring bounce” fell flat as U.S. auto sales fell for a fourth straight month in April.
J.D. Power exec Thomas King said Tuesday that while overall sales and consumer spending dropped in the first quarter, average transaction prices, automaker revenue and dealer profits all rose. Overall, he said, the industry was in better shape than many analysts predicted and the rest of 2019 is likely to play out like the first three months.
U.S. auto sales are expected to drop about 2.1% in March from a year earlier, partly due to bad weather, mixed economic data and lower tax refunds, according to industry consultants J.D. Power and LMC Automotive. The consultancies expect total U.S. vehicle sales of about 1.56 million units in March.
Estimates released by three leading forecasters see declines of as much as 2.6% from February 2018 levels, while Cox Automotive projects a 0.7% gain. Forecasts of the seasonally adjusted annual sales rate range from 16.6 million to Cox’s 17.1 million.
A predicted 2% drop in U.S. sales would keep the SAAR above 17 million. As the headwinds get stronger, transaction prices continue to rise and incentive spending remains disciplined.
Some analysts initially predicted that November sales would drop as post-hurricane sales slowed in Texas and Florida. But Black Friday promotions — which began in early November — helped lure buyers to dealerships.
General Motors said today that it sold 279,397 cars in September, which was a 12% increase over its 2016 totals for September. Kelley Blue Book had estimated GM would sell about 269,000 cars last month. Ford announced that it sold 222,248 cars in September, with 169,544 of them being sold at the retail level and another 52,704 going to fleets, which was an 8.7% increase over a total of 204,447 that Ford reported in the same month last year. Kelley had estimated Ford would sell about 209,000 cars last month.
The shift to more lucrative light trucks, plus strong sales in other global markets offset worries about the drop in U.S. car volume, major suppliers told Wall Street analysts in New York.
U.S. auto sales are forecast to fall for a seventh straight month in July from 2016’s record pace despite continued high incentives from manufacturers.
Although high incentives for dealers are a sign of a soft market, NADA Chief Economist Steven Szakaly says he is not yet concerned because the incentives are primarily on sedans. But, he adds, the industry should worry if the high incentives spread to more popular segments.
Total sales have fallen for six consecutive months, but the market is nowhere near as gloomy as that sounds. Retail sales have slipped less than 1% from a year ago, with the slowdown largely a product of reductions in less-profitable fleet deliveries.
U.S. light-vehicle sales dropped 2.9% in June behind another weak month for cars and lower fleet shipments. Toyota, Nissan and Honda chalked up modest gains while the Detroit 3 slipped as the industry posted its sixth straight monthly decline.
U.S. light-vehicle sales dipped 0.5% in May, even with higher discounts and strong truck demand, as the auto industry prepared to limp from one key selling season to another.
U.S. light-vehicle sales fell 4.7% in April as the biggest automakers, amid plunging car demand, posted declines with ever-rising incentives failing to shake the industry from its longest slump in years. The SAAR came in at 16.92 million, below forecasts of 17.1 million — a figure the industry has long considered an ideal, robust market.
U.S. light-vehicle sales dropped 1.7% in March as decreases at Ford, Honda, Toyota, FCA, Hyundai and Kia overshadowed gains at Nissan and GM, even amid higher spending on discounts. The results signal the industry — despite strong truck demand — is losing momentum heading into the key spring selling season.
U.S. new-vehicle sales are expected to decline for a third consecutive month, but the industry’s selling rate could reach its highest point of the year because of the way October falls in the calendar.
U.S. new-vehicle sales are projected to decline for a second consecutive month, even as incentive spending reaches a record high. The forecasts reinforce the notion that industry sales have leveled off after six consecutive years of gains coming out of the recession.
U.S. auto sales hit a record high of 17.47 million in 2015, topping the old record of 17.35 million set in 2000. Analysts expect sales could go even higher this year as unemployment continues to decline and more young buyers enter the market.
Who could have predicted that 2015 would wind down as the best year for U.S. auto sales in a long time, and maybe the best ever? But there you have it. Unless gasoline prices rise unexpectedly, or consumers radically downsize their passion and sentiment next month, the industry is on track to break a record.
Black Friday promotions — some of which began well before Thanksgiving — were expected to push last month’s sales to near-record levels. Car buying site Edmunds.com predicted sales of new cars and trucks will hit 1.33 million, eclipsing the previous November record set in 2001.
This month — powered by Black Friday sales and a strengthening economy— could be the best November ever for U.S. auto sales, according to forecasts from TrueCar and Edmunds.com, and also may mark the first time in history that the industry’s seasonally adjusted, annualized selling rate has topped 18 million units for three consecutive months.
Sales of new cars and trucks rose by double-digit percentages at most major automakers in October, and companies are raising their expectations for the rest of the year. U.S. sales rose 14% to nearly 1.5 million, according to Autodata Corp. It was the best October since 2001, when zero-percent financing offers after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks pushed sales to 1.6 million, according to the LMC Automotive forecasting firm.
Strong consumer demand, easy credit and generous incentives combined to fill dealer showrooms In September. The industry sold 1.44 million cars and light trucks last month, up 15.8% from a year ago.
Monthly U.S. auto sales are expected to fall for the first time in 19 months in August, but analysts say it’s a blip caused by a later-than-usual Labor Day rather than a softening of consumer demand. Still, that could be enough to halt Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ streak of consecutive year-over-year gains after 64 months.
As the industry awaits a wave of new and updated product, July’s U.S. sales performance is lifting hopes that 2015 could near the industry’s all-time sales record.
Summer deals to clear out 2015 models helped lure shoppers to showrooms in July, which resulted in sales records for several automakers. Fiat Chrysler, Ford and General Motors reported sales figures that marked their best July since before the recession.
Americans are buying new cars and trucks at the strongest rate since 2001 and spending more on pickups, SUVs and luxury models. But there are warning signs on the horizon. “We’re entering into uncharted territory,” said John Humphrey, of J.D. Power & Associates. “There will likely be an increase in interest rates. Even a 50 basis point move will have an impact on car sales.
U.S. auto sales have shown no signs of weakening this month after a blowout performance in May, with forecasters projecting an industrywide gain of about 5% to close out the best spring in a decade. Forecasters at LMC Automotive and Kelley Blue Book each raised their full-year sales forecasts to 17.1 million units.
Automakers enjoyed a spectacular run in May as U.S. sales totaled 1,634,954 light vehicles, the most ever recorded for the month. Pickups were a particular pocket of strength, both big and small. And GM had a great truck month.
U.S. auto sales rose for the 13th-straight month in March as the industry rode improving weather and strong truck sales to a slim 0.5% advance despite declines by some major players.
The average number of new-vehicles sales per dealership last year marked the third consecutive year of improvement, surging nearly 50 units to reach a record 921 units sold per store, according to a study by Urban Science.
New vehicle sales rose 14% to 1.15 million, according to Autodata Corp. It was the best January in nine years. Car buyers found a few deals, but they were also attracted to popular new vehicles such as the Ford F-150 and Jeep Cherokee. General Motors led the way with an 18% gain over last January.
Forecasters say U.S. auto sales have begun 2015 much stronger than 2014, when a deep freeze kept shoppers away from many dealerships in much of the country. General Motors is expected to post nearly a 20% increase, with the other Detroit 3 automakers also on track for double-digit gains.
Car dealers expect 2015 to be another good year, though perhaps not quite as good as 2014. Looking ahead, they’re adding headcount, but they see more revenue potential in used vehicles than new ones.