New vehicle sales return to boom this month, ahead of summer driving vacations image

The economic woes that cast a shadow over the less than stellar April new car and light truck sales are now in the past, so industry experts are forecasting booming results for the month that precedes the summer driving craze.

While the economic growth across the US is a little slower than expected, new car sales results so far are showing a recovery from the weary results seen in April. “The industry continues to outperform prior-year levels with respect to retail sales and transaction prices, ” commented John Humphrey, senior vice president of the global automotive practice at J.D. Power. Forecasts put overall light-vehicle deliveries in May at more than 1,591,000 units, edging up by three percent the figure seen last year on a selling-day-adjusted basis. Fleet sales are expected to reach 290,500 autos, or around 18.3 percent of sales, an increase from 17.6 percent during the same month last year. Additionally, carmakers are expecting hefty profits, as the average new-vehicle retail transaction price is of $30,428 – on its way to set a new record for the month of May.

With new vehicle retail sales expected to post the best result since August 2014, according to JD Power and LMC Automotive, the seasonally adjusted annualized selling rate is projected to hit 14.1 million autos. The Power Information Network (PIN) from J.D. Power puts consumer spending on autos at around $39.6 billion, the third-best level after August 2014 – when it was $40.3 billion and July 2005 when it stood at $39.7 billion. LMC Automotive said its forecast for total sales this year of 17 million remains a probable reality, thanks to the better results seen this month so far.