Stellantis continued to project strength throughout the third quarter as global sales and revenues improved but was hindered by labor strikes and worsening demand in the U.S.
Compared to Q3 2022, the automaker shipped 1.4 million units worldwide, an increase of 11%, with sales improving throughout its segments. This pushed earnings up by 7% year-over-year and resulted in a final quarterly revenue of roughly $47.6 billion. Despite industry-wide concerns of an electric vehicle slowdown, Stellantis saw battery-powered car sales grow 37%.
While the automaker scored multiple victories in the third quarter, its successes were partially undermined by complications in the U.S. car market. Although the United Auto Workers strike began just two weeks before the end of the period, the OEM estimated that the resulting factory closures cost it roughly $3.2 billion in revenue and $792.1 million in profit. According to company CFO Natalie Knight, Stellantis sustained the least damage from the now-concluded strike among the Detroit-Three brands.
The automaker was also faced with declining demand in North America. While its overall sales improved, Cox Automotive notes that the brand’s U.S. sales fell 2% from last year to 379,817 units. The only Stellantis brand to see its numbers rise over the period was Chrysler. Between Q2 2021 and Q2 2023, the OEM recorded seven consecutive quarters with lower year-over-year sales. Although the streak ended with a 6% increase in the second quarter of this year, the company is now at risk of resuming the trend unless it finds a way to boost sales in the last three months of 2023.
While its struggles in the U.S. are far from over, Stellantis has nevertheless continued to show resilience from the COVID pandemic, as have other automakers throughout the year. However, many challenges still lie in wait for the car industry. Affordability, electric vehicle hesitancy, high inflation and rising interest rates are issues that remain largely unresolved. In the coming months, OEMs will be watching the market carefully to set appropriate expectations for the new year.