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Chrysler leads Detroit 3 in October sales gains

by Bill Cawthon on

With a 27.0% increase in October sales, Chrysler had no trouble beating its crosstown rivals: Ford sales rose 6.2% while General Motors sales were up a scant 1.8% last month. As expected, neither Toyota nor Honda was able to match their numbers from last October but Toyota sales were strong enough to put it back in the No. 3 sales position for the month. Chrysler’s more than 165,000 sales ahead of Honda, so fourth looks pretty safe for the year.

The seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) came in at 13.26 million units, well ahead of last October’s 12.18 million and the highest reading since February of this year. A lot of industry watchers were hoping for a SAAR in the range of 13.4-13.5 million, but it wasn’t in the cards.

Chrysler was especially strong in cars sales in September; they accounted for 28.5% of all Chrysler’s sales, an unusually high number for the gang in Auburn Hills.

Chrysler minivan sales tanked last month: Of the four major players, the Caravan was third and the Town & Country was fourth. The Caravan still clings to a 975-unit lead in year-to-date sales.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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