Detroit Big Three Auto Makers Post Double-Digit Sales Increases For January
Supporting arguments that the 2009 “bailout” of the U.S. auto industry was a success—albeit an unpopular one—the Detroit Three posted double-digit sales gains in their first earnings reports of 2013. While Ford sales rose an astounding 22 percent, GM and Chrysler each saw respectable 16-percent increases.
“Automakers are kicking off the year strong, staying true to disciplined incentive spending as many curtailed their spending in January as the current lineup of products speak for themselves,” said Kristen Andersson, an analyst for auto price information company TrueCar.com.
The Ford Escape had its best January ever, with sales up 16 percent, while overall car sales rose 34 percent. Utilities and trucks also had a good month—up 23 and 11 percent, respectively. Explorer sales rose an incredible 46 percent and the F-Series also gained 22 percent. Most impressive, however, was the Ford Fusion, which saw January sales rise 64.5 percent to 22,339.
“Ford is off to a strong start this year, with Fusion and Escape delivering January sales records and F-Series seeing a particularly strong reception this early in the year,” sales chief Ken Czubay said in a prepared statement.
Chrysler also reported unusual sales growth for January. In fact, all models increased in sales except for the Dodge Caravan, which dropped 29 percent, or 4,965 units. Dodge led Chrysler’s gains with a 37-percent increase in sales.
“Despite the Grand Caravan numbers, we’re very pleased with our January sales numbers,” Chrysler spokesman Ralph Kisiel said. “January generally can be a slow month following in the wake of December, with all of the its year-end deals.”
GM noted its sales increased 27 percent from January 2011 and 50 percent from 2010, compared to industry-wide sales that were up just 14 percent from a year earlier. The manufacturer reported sales gains for all of its brands, including a 32 percent gain for Buick and a 47 percent increase for Cadillac. Chevrolet sales increased 11 percent, and GMC rose 23 percent.
“The year is off to a very good start for General Motors,” company vice president of US sales operations Kurt McNeil said in a prepared statement. “There’s a sense of optimism among our dealers that only comes when you pair a growing economy with great new products… We’re entering the sweet spot of our product plan in a growing economy.”
[Image via Shutterstock]
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