U.S. new car sales in August were unexpectedly strong according to the latest official press releases – mostly because of the heavy discounts offered to the customers.
Overall the incentives were about $305 more per vehicle than they were a year ago.
Ford Motor Co. said last most sales were up 0.4 percent, totalling 222,174 vehicles – with sales of its F-Series truck down by 4 percent (totaled 68,109 vehicles) as the company is preparing to launch the new F-150 later this year.
The Dearborn based automaker says last month was the best August in terms of sales in eight years. Fusion’s best-ever August sales totaled 29,452 vehicles – an increase of 19 percent. Explorer sales were up 25 percent to 17,748 vehicles.
General Motors said total sales were down 1 percent compared to last August – delivering 272,423 vehicles in the United States last month. However the U.S based automaker said its truck sales increased 18 percent compared to a year ago (sales of GMC and Chevrolet Suvs were up 38 percent). GM announced it’s top of the line Escalade model recorded the best August since 2007 – an increase of 64 percent compared to August 2013.
Chrysler Group, a unit of Fiat SpA reported sales of 198,379 new vehicles – 20 percent more compared to the same month of 2013 and the best August sales since 2002. The company said Jeep recorded the ever best August – and the best monthly sales ever by the Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Patriot and Dodge Journey. Even the sale of Fiat 500 were up 12 percent last month – the best month for the little 500 since 2012.
Among Asian automakers, Nissan announced sales of 134,388 units last month – an increase of 11.5 percent over the prior year and an August record.
Toyota posted an increase of 6.3 percent over year-ago month – with a total of 246,100 units sold. Lexus reported August sales of 32,809 units, a 14.2 percent increase on a DSR basis and a 10.1 percent increase on a raw-volume basis, both year-over-year.
“The industry had its best August in over a decade, with sales topping 1.5 million vehicles,” observed Bill Fay, Toyota Division group vice president.
“It was a great market from top to bottom in August,” said Jeff Bracken, Lexus group vice president and general manager. “Lexus had its second straight record-setting month as both passenger cars and luxury utility vehicles posted solid gains.”
Korean automaker Hyundai said August new car sales were up 6 percent to 70,003, while its affiliate Kia Motors Corp posted a decrease of 0.8 percent.
Overall, transaction prices in August averaged $32,495.