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May Auto Sales Up From Last Month, Predicts Edmunds.com

May 29, 2009

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — This month's new vehicle sales (including fleet sales) are expected to be 890,000 units, a 36.1 percent decrease from May 2008 but an 8.9 percent increase from April 2009, according to Edmunds.com.

May 2009 had 26 selling days, one less than last May. When adjusted for this difference, sales decreased 33.6 percent from May 2008. (The chart below sets forth other unadjusted and adjusted comparisons.)

Chrysler

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -52.2%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -53.9%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): -10.6%

Ford

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -25.8%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -28.5%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): 15.5%

GM

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -34.5%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -36.9%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): -1.3%

Honda

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -36.9%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -39.3%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): 1.0%

Hyundai

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -15.2%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -18.4%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): 6.2%

Nissan

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -32.6%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -35.1%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): 38.7%

Toyota

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -38.3%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -40.6%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): 20.8%

Industry Total

Change from May 2008 (Adjusted for fewer selling days): -33.6%

Change from May 2008 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days): -36.1%

Change from April 2009 (Same number of selling days): 8.9%

"Consumer demand is slowly starting to come back, but is still far below last year’s levels," observed Jesse Toprak, executive director of industry analysis for Edmunds.com. "The dramatic year-over-year declines can also partly be attributed to significant reductions in fleet sales, particularly for Chrysler, who closed down production on May 1."

The combined monthly U.S. market share for Chrysler, Ford and General Motors (GM) domestic nameplates is estimated to be 43.9 percent in May 2009, down from 45.3 percent in May 2008 and down from 46.6 percent in April 2009.

"Consumer confidence, a key factor in car buying, rose in May by the most in six years and is now at a level not seen since last September," reported Michelle Krebs, senior editor of Edmunds' AutoObserver.com. “This good news couldn’t come soon enough for the auto industry, and the benefits are already coming in for most automakers.”

Edmunds.com predicts Chrysler will sell 68,000 units in May 2009, down 53.9 percent compared to May 2008 and down 10.6 percent from April 2009. This would result in a new car market share of 7.7 percent for Chrysler in May 2009, down from 10.7 percent in May 2008 and down from 9.3 percent in April 2009.

Edmunds.com predicts Ford will sell 153,000 units in May 2009, down 28.5 percent compared to May 2008 but up 15.5 percent from April 2009. This would result in a new car market share of 17.2 percent of new car sales in May 2009 for Ford, up from 15.3 percent in May 2008 and up from 16.2 percent in April 2009.

Edmunds.com predicts GM will sell 170,000 units in May 2009, down 36.9 percent compared to May 2008 and down 1.3 percent from April 2009. GM's market share is expected to be 19.1 percent of new vehicle sales in May 2009, down from 19.4 percent in May 2008 and down from 21.1 percent in April 2009.

Edmunds.com predicts Honda will sell 102,000 units in May 2009, down 39.3 percent from May 2008 but up 1.0 percent from April 2009. Honda’s market share is expected to be 11.5 percent in May 2009, down from 12.1 percent in May 2008 and down from 12.4 percent in April 2009.

Edmunds.com predicts Hyundai will sell 63,000 units in May 2009, down 18.4 percent from May 2008 but up 6.2 percent from April 2009. Hyundai’s market share is expected to be 7.1 percent in May 2009, up from 5.6 percent in May 2008 but down from 7.3 percent in April 2009.

Edmunds.com predicts Nissan will sell 65,000 units in May 2009, down 35.1 percent from May 2008 but up 38.7 percent from April 2009. Nissan's market share is expected to be 7.4 percent in May 2009, up slightly from 7.2 percent in May 2008 and up from 5.8 percent in April 2009.

Edmunds.com predicts Toyota will sell 153,000 units in May 2009, down 40.6 percent from May 2008 but up 20.8 percent from April 2009. Toyota's market share is expected to be 17.2 percent in May 2009, down from 18.5 percent in May 2008 but up from 15.5 percent in April 2009.

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