* See the Top 40 best-selling brands by clicking on the title! *
The US new light vehicle market shoots up a very satisfying 9% year-on-year in September to 1.246.006 registrations, meaning the year-to-date total is now up 5.5% to 12.431.305 units. Off a low Sept. 2013 base, the market is actually cooler than a piping hot month of August in adjusted terms while August was up just 6%: the seasonally adjusted annual sales rate hit 16.4 million, up sharply from 15.4 million a year earlier but well below August’s 17.5 million, the strongest pace since January 2006. Nevertheless, all the positive signs are here: the SAAR has now been above 16 million for 6 straight months and September closes the strongest quarter of sales since 2006. We are now cruising along towards a very encouraging 5th consecutive year of growth for the US market at around 16.5 million units for 2014. Light trucks are pulling the market up: combined sales of pickups, crossovers, SUVs and vans are up 17% vs. just 2% for cars in September, 10% vs. 1% year-to-date!
Group-wise, General Motors is without a doubt the performer of the month with overall sales up a tremendous 19% to 223,437 units and playing a large part in the overall health of the market. This is the group’s strongest year-on-year gain since the 20% it gained back in September 2011… Retail volumes are up 17% but fleet jump by an astounding 30%. GMC is up 28%, Chevrolet up 20%, Buick up 12% and Cadillac is the odd one out with flat sales. Segment-wise, GM’s light truck division delivered a massive 42% growth vs. just 6% for cars. Ford Motor Company is back up to 2nd place but down a harsh 3% while Toyota Motor Co. is down to #4 with sales up just 2% year-on-year.
The other winner in September is the Fiat Chrysler Group, up 19% to 169,890 sales and jumping back into third group overall above Toyota for the first time in over 3 years! This marks the 54th consecutive month of year-on-year improvement for the Fiat Chrysler Group. Keeping in mind Chrysler has been trailing the #3 spot by as much as 50,000 units during some months in 2014, this is no mean feat and means the Big Three are back to the Top Three position at home in the US for the first time since 2011. A momentous time indeed. In the brand detail inside the Fiat Chrysler Group, Jeep is up another 47%, Ram up 35% with pickups up 30%, heck even the Chrysler brand is up 14% while Fiat is up 6% and Dodge down 9%. Here again light truck are by far the strongest division at +30% vs. -7% for cars.
Other very healthy manufacturers this month in the US include Honda Motor Co. up 12%, Nissan Motor Co. up 18%, Subaru continuing to smash all records at +31% and now raising its 2014 Full Year target to a historical 500,000 units and Mitsubishi up 39%. Reveresely, Volkswagen endured its 18th straight month of decline at -19% (while Audi keeps getting stronger at +14%), Infiniti is down 13% and Mini down 20%.
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Full September 2014 Top 15 groups, Top 40 brands Ranking Tables below.