August Auto & Truck Sales
August was not a good month for many automakers with Fiat Chrysler, Audi, and Hyundai among the very few reporting sales increases.
Two of the three Detroit automakers said sales were weaker.
Lincoln sales moved higher as well as van sales at the Blue Oval but sales of the F-150 pickup were down 6 percent. Ford car sales were off 25 percent and even SUV sales were down fractionally.
The General continues to cut back on lower profit sales to fleets such as rental companies, and like Ford, its sales leader last month was its luxury brand, Cadillac. Sales there rose nearly 4 percent while sales slowed for Buick and Chevrolet. GM remain optimistic. “All the economic factors continue to point toward a strong second half of the year and another potential record year for the industry,” said Mustafa Mohatarem, GM’s chief economist. “We think the industry is well positioned for a sustainable high level of customer demand.”
Jeeps came through for the troops in WWII, and for Fiat Chrysler in August with sales up 12 percent. Five of the six Jeep brand vehicles recorded sales increases in August, with the Jeep Cherokee turning in the largest percentage year-over-year gain. The company said demand for the Dodge brand rose 5 percent while RAM truck sales increased 2 percent. Fiat sales were off 21 percent while Chrysler was off 22 percent last month.
Audi + 2.5%
Analysts are divided on whether the industry can still ring up a record number of sales for the year given the latest figures.