The auto industry, including Chrysler, Ford, and GM, reported a strong sales performance in November, despite discussions regarding the looming fiscal cliff.
The Chrysler Group reported that its sales surged by 14 percent, or 122,565 units, its best November sales since November 2007. It is also the 32nd consecutive month for the company to post a year-over-year sales gains.
Among the Chrysler brands, Fiat SpA (BIT:FR) (PINK:FIATY)'s 500 posted the largest sales record last month, with a 123 percent increase, or 6,363 units. Dodge sales climbed by 32 percent or 40,075 units, as the RAM truck sales increased by 23 percent or 25,074, and the Chrysler brand rose by 1 percent or 18,766 units. The company’s sales for its Jeep brand declined by 3 percent, to 18,777 units in November.
In a statement, Reid Bigland, president and CEO of Chrysler, said, “Even with all the talk of the looming fiscal cliff, Chrysler Group is well positioned for a strong sales finish to the year. Our November sales were up 14 percent, and we extended our sale streak to 32-consecutive months of year-over-year sales gains. We are expecting a strong December as the industry continues to recover from the East Coast Hurricane and consumers continue to respond to our popular year-end Big Finish event.”
The Ford Company (NYSE:F) reported that its November sales for vehicles jumped by 6 percent to 177,673 units. According to the company, the Ford F-Series sold 56,299 vehicles last month, an 18 percent increase in sales. The C-Max Hybrid brand’s sales performance climbed by 52 percent to 4,848 units, and sales in small cars increased by 76 percent to 26,848 units.
According to Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F)'s vice president for U.S. Marketing, Sales, and Service, Ken Czubay, “November represented a strong month for the industry, and Ford sales performed well across the board. We saw sharp increases in demand for fuel-efficient small cars, our best-ever month for electrified vehicles, and growing demand for our fuel-efficient and capable F-Series pick-ups.”
Meanwhile, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)'s November sales increased by 3 percent to 186,505 vehicles. The company sold 128, 867 units of Chevrolet, 29,832 units GMC, 13,289 units of Buick, and 14,517 units of Pontiac.
According to General Motors Company (NYSE:GM), the average transaction price for its vehicles increased by $750 per unit and Buick and Cadillac's current November sales are the best since, 2006 and 2007, respectively.
Kurt McNeil, vice president of GM sales and operations, said, “In November, we saw strong car and crossover sales and we continue to make inroads with younger customers, import drivers, and buyers focused on fuel economy. Sales at Cadillac and Buick are benefiting from the buzz generated by new products, including the Buick Verano, Cadillac XTS, and Cadillac ATS.”
Other car manufacturers, including Nissan, Hyundai, and Volkswagen also reported a strong sales performance in November. Analysts estimated that the overall auto industry sold more than 1.1 million vehicles last month.
Jesse Toprak, analyst at Truecar.com, said the auto industry recorded the biggest sales in November since February 2008. According to him, “We don’t expect any major impact on auto sales from the ongoing fiscal cliff discussions.”