US auto sales expected to increase 4 percent in April image

New-vehicle sales in the United States are seen by Kelley Blue Book to reach a total of 1.51 million units this month.

A 4 percent increase in auto sales could represent the highest volume ever for the month of April, surpassing the previous record of 1.5 million units a year ago, while it would also lead to an estimated 17.5 million seasonally adjusted annual rate in the United States, according to the researcher. “Following a disappointing March, we expect sales to get back on track in April with SAAR in the mid-17 million range,” Tim Fleming, analyst for Kelley Blue Book, said.

In March, the auto market rose around 3 percent in March to 1.6 million vehicles, while the annualized rate adjusted for seasonal trends fell to 16.6 million. “Increased fleet sales and rising incentive spending among automakers remain the factors to watch, but retail demand appears to be holding steady, signaling the industry’s strong run isn’t over quite yet,” he added. Retail sales are expected to account for 80.3 percent of volume, down from 80.9 percent in April 2015.

As for the automakers, Kelley Blue Book says that Nissan North America is poised to maintain its solid momentum with projected double-digit sales volume gains, General Motors to likely to keep its downward trend to a further 3 percent drop, while sales of the Volkswagen Group are projected to fall by nearly 7 percent.