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FCA vs the world (and Silverado) in US sales

by David Zatz on

Between the coronavirus and oil-industry devastation, U.S. sales plummeted in March; as one example, Hyundai sales were up by 11% in January and February, but fell by 34% in March (vs February). Mazda’s March sales fell by 45%. (GM, Ford, and FCA only report quarterly.)

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Allpar already reported on FCA’s 10% sales drop in the United States; but how did they do compared with others?  First, the mighty GM: they did not report their percentage of fleet sales, so they may  have loaded up the fleets even more than FCA did. In any case, their sales fell by only 7.1%, from 655,840 to 618,335. (FCA went from 586,956 to 514,614; the two companies are remarkably close by historical standards.)

At GM, the hardest hit brands were the most profitable: Buick (down 35%) and Cadillac (down 16%). Chevrolet was down by just 4% and GMC by 5.5%, suggesting that truck sales rescued GM; and many of those were likely fleets or heavily incentivized. The Silverado is the cheapest truck available, from a rebated-price perspective, even with the Ram Classic out there.

Pickup sales at a glance:
GM, 198,610 (Silverado+Sierra)
Ford, 186,562
Ram, 128,805

2019 Chevrolet Silverado

Sadly, Ford Transit sales are climbing rapidly as first responders buy vehicles, but ProMaster City continues to fall.

Over at Ford, sales fell more than at FCA, with a 12.3% drop; Lincoln had an Aviator-driven 2% increase. Ford’s car sales fell by 36% while SUVs fell by 11% and trucks fell by 5%, increasing their reliance on the F-series pickups.

With fewer fleet sales, most of the imports were hit harder; Nissan fell by 28%, Volkswagen and Volvo by 14%, BMW by 17%, and Honda by 19%. Toyota has a combination of fleet sales and brand new car designs, cushioning the blow to a 9% drop; but March sales fell by 35% at Toyota and 47% at Lexus (Toyota reports monthly).

drive forward

GM was the quickest out of the gate with a deal to make ventilators, by far the fastest to make anyone who could to work from home, and to provide 0% financing (FCA later countered with 0% financing and, finally, mostly-digital purchase). GM has 668,443 vehicles in inventory, an 18% lower number than at the same time in 2019.

As a side note, ALG reported that FCA actually had higher incentives than GM, at $4,939/vehicle at FCA vs $4,767 at GM; Ford is practically miserly with $3,641/vehicle. The biggest buyers of sales are Daimler ($5,587) and BMW ($5,529). VW and Nissan are the only imports in the over-$4,000 group. Subaru has the lowest incentives ($1,148); Toyota and Hyundai are also low (well under $3,000).


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