US sales of full-size pickup trucks and SUVs increased in April due to lower fuel prices and a stronger housing market.
Since February gas prices have begun to drop and this month the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline was with 8% lower than the price during the same month last year. The housing market kept increasing maintaining strong truck sales pace for the sixth consecutive month.
“Relatively lower gas prices coupled with small business demand improving for trucks resulted in a strong showing for small and large pickups in April, a trend we expect to see strengthen even further for the rest of 2013,” TrueCar.com analyst Jesse Toprak said.
Analysts predict that in April the US auto industry’s annual selling rate will reach 15.25 million vehicles, the sixth straight month of sales surpassing 15 million. Sales of large pickup trucks increased 26% from the same month last year, the largest increase among all auto segments. Compact crossover sales increased 23%, and together with trucks accounted for almost a quarter of the total US auto sales in April, up 21% from 2012.
This increase might help GM reduce its inventory of large trucks as the automaker prepares to introduce its new lineup of pickups in the following two months. Analysts expect both GM and Ford to report slight gains in the market share for April.