2011 U.S. Auto Sales Best Since 2008
Auto sales soared in December as pent-up demand and holiday promotions helped increase sales. This makes 2011 the best U.S. auto industry’s best year since 2008, according to Bloomberg. The No. 1 U.S. automaker General Motors Co. beat estimates and reported sales of 234,351, up 4.5% for the month and up 14% to 2.5 million units for the year. Ford, second behind GM, sold 210,140 vehicles in December, up 10% from last year. This increase was due to truck sales, which rose approximately 28%, while car sales fell 14.9%. Ford reported yearly sales up 17% to 2.06 million vehicles and expects U.S. industry sales of 13.5 million to 14.5 million for next year.
Chrysler’s sales were up 37% to 138,019 cars and light trucks, making it the best month in four years. Total 2011 sales for the company were up 26%. Volkswagen sales were up 36% for December to 32,502 vehicles, and for total 2011, sales soared 26% to 324,402 units.
Toyota reported U.S. auto sales up 0.4% from last year to 178,131 vehicles in December, the best month in sales for the year. The company’s monthly increase was 29% over November.
“Industrywide, including fleet sales, analysts at J.D. Power & Associates and LMC Automotive predicted total vehicle sales in December of 1,230,100 units, a rise of 8%,” according to The Wall Street Journal. The outlook for 2012 is single-digit growth as demand will be weaker due to the economy.Nissan beat estimates and reported December deliveries up 7.7% to 100,927 while Honda Motor Co. sales may have dropped 15%.
Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp. are estimated to reach a 27% sales gain for December.
Sources: The Wall Street Journal & Bloomberg