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KBB Predicts Industry Will Roll 1.14 Million Units in September

September 27, 2012

IRVINE, Calif. — September new-car sales will reach a 14.3 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) in September, slightly down from the 14.5 million SAAR achieved in August, according to Kelley Blue Book (KBB)

If realized, KBB’s prediction equates to an 8 percent year-over-year improvement, which is well below last month’s 20 percent year-over-year increase. Although September sales do not appear as strong as August, KBB is taking last year’s sales environment into consideration.

“This time last year Toyota and Honda were able to boost production and sales after several months of downtime following the earthquake and tsunami in Japan,” said Alec Gutierrez, senior market analyst of automotive insights for KBB. “Now that year-over-year figures are more comparable, annual gains will level out and remain between 7 to 10 percent through year-end.”

Healthy consumer demand will continue to drive industry sales growth and is expected to account for nearly 85 percent of total sales volume in September. Rising sales throughout the year are due largely to pent-up demand from those that have delayed purchases because of economic uncertainty. 

“Those consumers who have delayed their purchase of a new vehicle during the past several years due to economic reasons are finally making the decision to trade-up to something new,” said Gutierrez, noting that the average vehicle on the road today is about 11 years old. “As a vehicle ages beyond 10 years old, or has more than 100,000 miles on the odometer, rising maintenance costs and deteriorating reliability can become a serious headache. Drivers of older vehicles are keenly aware of this fact, and many are opting to take advantage of the near zero percent finance offers on today’s more reliable and fuel-efficient vehicles to achieve peace of mind.”

In terms of segment sales, KBB expects pickup trucks to be strong this month as domestic manufacturers introduce sales events. The 2012 Chevrolet Silverado is available for zero percent for 60 months or with as much as $3,500 in consumer cash. 

The 2012 Ford F-150 can be purchased with up to $5,500 in cash back, while the Ram 1500 is available with up to $4,000 in rebates. Kelley Blue Book believes these deals, coupled with high inventory levels, will help increase truck share by as much as a full percentage point during the month. 

Market share of mid-size and compact sedans should remain firm at 16.7 percent and 14.9 percent, respectively, due to high gas prices. The all-new Nissan Altima, Chevrolet Malibu, Ford Fusion and Honda Accord, each boasting better than 35 mpg on the highway, are arriving now and should catch the consumer’s attention.

Kelley Blue Book: Sales to Hit 14.3 Million SAAR as Consumers Seek Fuel-Sippers

 

 

 

Sales Volume

Market Share

Segment

Sep-12

Sep-11

YOY%

Sep-12

Sep-11

YOY

Mid-Size Car

190,380

176,071

8.1%

16.7%

15.2%

1.5%

Compact Car

169,860

179,059

-5.1%

14.9%

12.3%

2.6%

Compact Crossover

134,520

115,074

16.9%

11.8%

10.7%

1.1%

Full-Size Pickup Truck

144,780

108,391

33.6%

12.7%

14.0%

-1.3%

Subcompact Car

46,740

37,302

25.3%

4.1%

3.8%

0.3%

Total

1,140,000

1,053,761

8.2%

-

-

-

*Includes segments not shown

 

 

 

 

 

 

Although Ford’s expected 1.6 percent year-over-year increase appears modest on the surface, it would represent a tremendous accomplishment for the Blue Oval. This would mark the first time this year that Ford posted monthly sales in excess of volume achieved in 2007, when the industry notched sales of more than 16 million units annually. More than 175,000 Ford models were sold in September 2007, just under Kelley Blue Book’s current forecast of 177,840 units. 

“Ford will see a boost from the F-150, Focus and remaining 2012 Fusions available with nearly $3,750 cash back,” said Gutierrez. “Toyota, Honda and Volkswagen also will have a strong month in large part to the relatively low sales volume achieved this time last year. Volkswagen added the redesigned Passat and Beetle to its stable, helping to boost sales significantly through much of this year since these models were skipped for the 2012 model year.”

Kelley Blue Book: Toyota and Honda Continue to Lead Year-Over-Year Market Share Gains

 

 

 

 

Sales Volume

Market Share

Manufacturer

Sep-12

Sep-11

YOY%

Sep-12

Sep-11

YOY

General Motors

215,460

207,145

4.0%

18.9%

19.7%

-0.8%

Ford Motor Company

177,840

174,960

1.6%

15.6%

16.6%

-1.0%

Toyota Motor Company

163,020

121,451

34.2%

14.3%

11.5%

2.8%

Chrysler Group

134,520

127,334

5.6%

11.8%

12.1%

-0.3%

American Honda

109,440

89,532

22.2%

9.6%

8.5%

1.1%

Hyundai-Kia

93,480

87,660

6.6%

8.2%

8.3%

-0.1%

Nissan North America

92,340

92,964

-0.7%

8.1%

8.8%

-0.7%

Volkswagen

47,880

36,912

29.7%

4.2%

3.5%

0.7%

Total

1,140,000

1,053,761

8.2%

-

-

-

*Includes brands not shown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Similar to previous months, consumers will find low annual percentage rates (APR) and lease deals in nearly every category. A subcompact or compact, such as the Hyundai Accent or Ford Focus, can be leased for under $200 per month, while a mid-size sedan or compact crossover like the Nissan Altima or Honda CR-V can be leased for roughly $250 per month. 

“Consumers also can look for zero and 1 percent finance offers for up to 60 months on nearly any vehicle available for sale today,” said Gutierrez. “Those shoppers looking for a great finance offer have plenty of time to make a decision, especially after considering the government’s pledge to keep interest rates at current levels through the middle of 2015.” 

 

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