Record-breaking snow and ice in many parts of the country hampered auto sales. Car sales fell 1.4 percent from February 2014 while SUVs and light trucks picked up the slack, rising 11.8 percent. Toyota’s sales were up 12.1 percent, enough to beat Ford for the country’s number two spot in sales behind General Motors. BMW, up 14.5 percent; Honda, up 4.1 percent; And Subaru, up 18.6 percent; all saw gains last month.
Auto sales took off last month, setting the tone for what dealers expect will be a successful sales year. Light trucks drove gains in January, with sales up 19.3 percent from January 2014. Cars trailed with a 7.7 percent improvement. Honda saw sales rise 11.6 percent, Lexus’ sales was up 31.2 percent, and Toyota’s sales rose 13.2 percent. Volkswagen’s sales remained almost perfectly flat from 2014, with a sales bump of just ten vehicles.
Record numbers of auto recalls did little to slow sales last month, and in fact may have helped drive traffic to dealerships. Kia saw sales rise 34.6 percent from December 2013; Subaru, the year’s fastest growing automaker, had sales up 24.3 percent; and Toyota enjoyed a 12.2 percent improvement. For the 13th consecutive year the Camry was the top selling car in America with 428,606 vehicles sold.
Low gas prices and interest rates combined with clever Black Friday marketing at the end of the month to create the perfect storm of sales. Honda was up 4.9 percent, Subaru was up 23.6 percent, Toyota sales rose 2.3 percent, and Volkswagen enjoyed a sales bump of 3.2 percent. VW’s Audi brand led international luxury sales in growth with an increase of 22 percent.
“The industry is closing out 2014 on a strong note,” said AIADA President Cody Lusk. “Gas prices, interest rates, and winter weather are creating a particularly friendly market for SUVs and trucks.”
Asian nameplate brands led October’s sales growth with a 7.8 percent improvement from October 2013. Honda was up 5.5 percent, Nissan’s sales grew 14.9 percent, Subaru’s sales grew 24.7 percent, and Toyota saw a 7.5 percent increase. European brands also made their mark in October. After 18 consecutive months of sliding sales, Volkswagen posted a 7.8 percent increase while BMW’s sales rose 11 percent.
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