“This was the month where automotive sales beat all expectations,” says Jessica Caldwell, Director of Industry Analysis with Edmunds.com, to Jim Fitzpatrick, of CBT News. March rounds out with a 17.4 SAAR. The number comes in a lot higher than what we excepted for 2018. General Motors and Fiat-Chrysler (the Jeep Brand) were two big outliers this month. These two brands can be credited for exceeding the expectation as all the other brands held their own as expected.
We have not seen a response to the influx of used car into the market just yet. As time goes on and as the summer approaches, Jessica suspects that we will start seeing buyers really weigh the difference between new or off-lease vehicles. “This may spark a competition between new and used.” Jessica Added.
Another number we noticed climbing was the gas price. Could this affect the large SUV or crossover sales? Jessica does not believe so. She explains that people are buying the smaller versions of the larger vehicles that just so happen to be gas efficient. Unless there is a serious spike in gas that holds course for a period of time, gas and it’s prices have a minimal impact on sales thus far.
Electric Vehicles are starting to gaining traction in the market. Hundi showcased its Kona last week at the New York Auto Show. The smaller SUV gets 250 miles per charge. This SUV speaks to the buyer in range, body type, and style that make people more interested.
There are more luxury SUV sales currently then cars. Yet, the first quarter tends to not be the time where luxury sales come alive. Mostly, they sell towards the end of summer or end of the year. American luxury brand are making effort to beef up their vehicle lines as we also saw at the New York Auto Show to support demand.
Vehicle sales for March 2018 in comparison to sale in March 2017:
|BMW of N.A.||35,954||36,112||-0.40%|
|Fiat Chrysler Automobiles||216,948||191,566||13.30%|
|Ford Motor Co.||243,021||234,895||3.50%|
|Honda Motor Co.||142,392||137,227||3.80%|
|Hyundai Motor America||61,538||69,265||-11.20%|
|Kia Motors America||50,645||49,429||2.50%|
|Jaguar Land Rover N.A.||14,232||12,918||10.20%|
|Mitsubishi Motors N.A.||14,319||11,766||21.70%|
|Nissan North America||162,535||168,832||-3.70%|
|Subaru of America||58,097||54,871||5.90%|
|Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A.||222,782||215,224||3.50%|
|Volvo Car USA||8,233||5,356||53.70%|
|VW Group of America||57,649||51,156||12.70%|
Numbers in this table are sourced from a combination of other media outets and OEM reports.