New Models Push June Auto Sales Past Expectations

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Sales of brand new cars making their introductions to buyers helped June auto sales climb even higher than expected, automakers and analysts said this week. The Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rates (SAAR) showed total sales hit 17 million during the month, up from an expected 16.3 million sales. It is the highest sales rate in the U.S. since 2006.

The biggest headlines belonged to luxury brands like Audi, Maserati and Porsche – each on the strength of new high-volume models. The new A3 improved its sales by 10-percent and helped Audi jump by 23-percent over June 2013.  The new Maserati Ghibli did the same (233-percent), as did the Porsche Macan (11-percent). Others weren’t so lucky, however. more

Ford, Chrysler Sales Surge In March

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Sales figures reported by Ford and Chrysler for the month of March 2014 posted substantial gains, numbers that may become more clear when General Motors releases their likely diminished figures later today. Until then, Ford is basking in their 3 percent gain over March 2013 sales and their best March since 2006. Chrysler saw a 13 percent increase for their best March since 2007, led by the best sales month ever for both Jeep and FIAT.

On the day when CEO Mary Barra will address a U.S. Congressional hearing about the ignition switch recall controversy, GM announced a computer glitch that they say will delay their sales announcement. The numbers could well show that buyers stayed away from GM brands last month in reaction to the recall debacle. We will report their figures as soon as they are released. more

Chrysler Files IPO To Pressure Fiat

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Citing increasing market share and confidence in the auto industry, Chrysler announced that they have filed for an initial public offering on Monday. Experts say that the move, however, is intended to force parent company Fiat to accelerate their negotiations with the United Auto Workers union.

After being saved from liquidity by Fiat in 2009, as part of the Obama administration rescue plan, Chrysler has enjoyed new success. Sales have risen each year since, enlivened by the refreshed Ram trucks line and SRT performance sports cars, plus guidance and financial backing from their Italian parents. Sales last month were up 12% over August 2012, and marked their best single month of sales since August 2007. “We have moved rapidly to operationally integrate our respective companies in order to capitalize on the considerable potential the Fiat-Chrysler Alliance creates,” reads the IPO filing. more

August 2013 Sales: Healthy Industry Posts Big Gains

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When you have General Motors and Toyota each selling more than 200,000 cars in one month, plus each of the Big Three making big gains and new models flying off showroom floors, it’s a pretty good sign that the automotive industry is in good shape.

Many automakers posted their most successful month of sales since their peak in 2007, as more than 16 million new vehicles were sold in the United States in August. That’s a 17% increase over sales from August 2012, and a 14.3 increase over sales from July 2013 – according to Tweets from CNBC reporter Phil LeBeau. Likely bolstered by aggressive Labor Day weekend sales, the figures still demonstrate an industry that has recovered from the effects of the recession. So who won biggest? more

May Auto Sales Kind To Big Three
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Sales figures for the month of May are beginning to roll in from across the industry, and it looks like the previous 31 days were strong for the Big Three of Ford, Chrysler and General Motors. Here are the figures as they stand, and we’ll continue to update as other brands send their numbers.

Starting things off, Ford increased sales by 14% over May 2012, with strong performances by both the Fusion and Escape. Perhaps most notably, sales of the best-selling F-Series trucks topped 70,000 units for the first time since March 2007. Chrysler saw 11% gain, led by the Ram brand which increased by a whopping 24% and Dodge with 23%. Fiat and Jeep, however, each saw only 1% gain.

General Motors saw 3.1% gain, which is misleading because the automakers sells far more total inventory than Chrysler or Ford. At the same time, GM needed a nearly 40% increase from Cadillac over May 2012, which is almost entirely due to the brand new ATS model. Its leading brand, Chevrolet, posted their best retail sales month since August 2009 but saw only 0.9% total improvement. The mixed bag continued for other automakers, too. more

Ford Will End Australian Production In 2016
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After nearly ninety years, Ford will cease production operations in Australia by the year 2016 due to lagging sales and the struggling economy in that nation. The company has lost about $600 million in Australia in the past five years alone.

Ford will continue with their plans to launch new versions of favorites that Americans have lusted after for years, like the Falcon, Falcone Ute and Territory. They will also continue to build existing cars like the Kuga, Ranger and Focus for the next three years. After that, though, it’s curtains for the blue oval and the 1,200 production jobs they provide. more

Honda Accord Unseats Camry In Heated Mid-Sized Sedan Sales
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For years, the Toyota Camry has been the undisputed champion of mid-sized sedans, and even as the best-selling car in America. Until now. Last month, the new Honda Accord outsold the Camry for the second consecutive month. New versions of the Nissan Altima and Ford Fusion are also knocking on the door. Is this the end of the Camry Reign?

The numbers stack up like this: 33,538 for Accord, 31,710 for Camry, 26,722 for Fusion and 21,991 for Altima. For the Camry, that’s a decrease of 13.9 percent over April 2012 – a significant amount in an incredibly competitive segment that has paced Toyota for a long time. What we know for sure is that the race is on. more

Chrysler, Volkswagen Lead Banner 2012 For Auto Sales
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Like we mentioned earlier today, 2012 turned out to be a huge year for auto sales, with automakers like Chrysler and Volkswagen garnering huge chunks of market share. Here are the biggest winners and losers of the past twelve months. more

Ford Reports Record Third Quarter Profit of $2.2 Billion
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While we’re here in Las Vegas for the SEMA show, where Ford is unveiling a bushel of new concepts of production models, the automaker is also celebrating record third quarter profits over $2 billion. more

Toyota Recalls 2.5 Million Cars Including Camry, Corolla and Tundra
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Toyota has announced a recall for 2.5 million vehicles in the United States alone, due to a faulty driver’s side Power Window Master Switch (PWMS) that may not be properly lubricated and could ignite over time. more

August Auto Sales: Big Month For Big Three, Volkswagen and Toyota
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Americans must be buying a heck of a lot of new cars, because reports released today indicate huge sales increases in August for the Grand Triumvirate of Ford, Chrysler and General Motors as well as a dozen other large automakers. more

July Sales Recap: Chrysler Strong, Ford and GM Stumble
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Chrysler had the strongest month of sales in July for the Big Three American automakers, posting a 13-percent increase over July 2011 while Ford and General Motors both lost ground to Japanese companies recovering from last year’s earthquake. more

Ford, Chrysler and General Motors Post Big June Sales Figures
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Each of the Big Three American automakers today reported a significant increase in U.S. sales in the month of June 2012 over the same month last year, with Chrysler posting a 20-percent increase, General Motors reporting a 16-percent increase and Ford increasing sales by 7-percent over June 2011.

The figures are an encouraging sign that American buyers are becoming more willing to invest, not only in a new car, but in a new domestic car as the three auto giants continue to crawl out of the recession. An MSNBC report says that buyers are looking to replace their aging vehicles that they held onto through the economic downturn.

A total of 144,811 Chrysler vehicles were sold in the United States in June, the brand’s twenty-seventh consecutive month of year over year sales improvements. Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and Fiat all improved over June of last year. Strong performers included the Jeep Wrangler, Dodge Avenger and Challenger and Chrysler 200 and 300. more

Audi Posts 15-Percent Increase in U.S. Sales, Best April in Company History
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The fastest-growing automaker is showing no signs of slowing down, as Audi reported record numbers for the month of April after a 15% increase in sales.

Audi sold 11,521 vehicles in the United States in April, a significant increase over the 10,018 they sold in April 2011. The boost is due in large part to the new 2012 A6 sedan, which jumped up by 136.8% over sales of the outgoing model in 2011. But the A6 wasn’t the only bright spot.

Sales of the A7 Sportback increased by 91.2%, the Q5 crossover by 24.5% and the Q7 SUV by 12.3%. The A4 sedan dropped slightly by 6.6%, but is still far and away the best selling vehicle in the lineup with more than 3,100 units moved in April.

The figures make April 2012 the best April in Audi history, and the fourth best month of sales ever. It is the sixteenth consecutive month of increasing sales for Volkswagen’s upscale brand. Audi has made no secret that their sights are set squarely on countryman BMW, who reported a 6.1% increase over April 2011 and – bolstered by a new 6-Series coupe and the ever-popular X5 SUV – sold more than twice the vehicles that Audi did. Still, the contenders are encouraged by their rapid growth.

“Audi’s progressive luxury positioning in the market clearly speaks to discerning consumers as they are seeking out the most technologoically advanced vehicles in the market,” said Johan de Nysschen, Audi of America President, in a press release.

“This is the fundamental reason why Audi has set record sales in sixteen consecutive months and will continue to register steady and sustainable sales improvements.”

Audi says they plan to spend about $17 billion on new products and technologies through 2016. Their sport-inspired S6 and S7 models will be available soon, and an A3 Cabrio and R5 coupe are in the pipeline. more