Toyota, Honda, Nissan U.S. Sales Rise; GM, Ford Fall

Toyota, Honda, Nissan U.S. Sales Rise; GM, Ford Fall http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid 601087&sid=aLbM8X6prdIY&refer=home
July 3 (Bloomberg) -- Japanese automakers Toyota Motor Corp., Honda
Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. posted monthly U.S. sales increases for the fifth time this year, stealing a bigger slice of the world's biggest auto market from domestic rivals.
Toyota reported a 10 percent gain in June, Honda rose 11 percent, and Nissan was up 23 percent. Ford's 8.1 percent drop was its eighth consecutive monthly decline. DaimlerChrysler's volume slipped 1.8 percent. General Motors Corp. plunged 21 percent.
New products and gains in quality surveys failed to translate into vehicle sales for the U.S. automakers. Detroit- based GM and Ford are trying to stem losses in part by paring sales to so-called fleet customers such as rental-car companies, which get discounts for buying in bulk.
``This is a market that is moving toward the strength of the import carmakers,'' Kevin Tynan, an Argus Research Corp. analyst in New York, said in an interview. ``It will be increasingly difficult for the domestic companies to win sales.''
Toyota, helped by rising U.S. sales, overtook GM as the world's largest seller of vehicles in the first quarter. Toyota is also gaining on Ford to become No. 2 in the U.S.
Toyota has been helped by demand for fuel-efficient vehicles, such as the Prius hybrid, as gasoline prices have topped $3 a gallon in the U.S.
Fleet Reduction
Fleets accounted for more than a quarter of their sales in 2006, when GM posted a $1.98 billion loss and Ford reported a record $12.6 billion deficit.
Ford's sales to rental-car companies fell 39 percent in June and 30 percent for the first six months.
At the same time, the company said sales of Ford, Lincoln and Mercury brand models to individual buyers rose last month, the first such increase since October. The company didn't provide figures.
Ford said its Edge crossover wagon, which sold 12,470 vehicles in June, helped the company's retail results. Ford also had a 20 percent increase in Focus small cars, to 19,000.
The company's F-Series pickup trucks fell 0.5 percent in June, the eighth straight monthly decline. The June results were better than the 11.2 percent drop for the F-Series in the first half of the year. The Fusion sedan had a 9.2 percent slide in June.
Nissan, Hyundai Rising
Nissan's improvement was led by an 83 percent surge in sales of Altima sedans, as well as higher sales of compact Sentra cars and Versa subcompacts, the Tokyo-based company said in an e- mailed statement.
Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea's largest automaker, had an 11 percent increase in June.
Industry sales of cars and light trucks probably rose to an annual rate of 16.4 million, the average estimate of 10 analysts and 12 economists in a survey by Bloomberg News. The rate in June 2006 was 16.3 million, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
George Magliano, Global Insight Inc.'s research director in New York, said he projects June sales at an annual rate in the ``low-16 million range.''
GM and Ford ``are cutting back on fleet sales. The economy being what it is, there's not a lot going on,'' Magliano said. ``Every time we expect strength in this market, it hasn't shown it.''
GM and Ford introduced new incentives late in June.
On June 26, GM began offering three-year, no-interest financing and $1,000 discounts on many 2006 and 2007 Buick, Pontiac, Chevrolet and GMC models. The promotion is scheduled to run through July 9.
Ford also began providing three-year, no-interest loans last week on its Ford, Lincoln and Mercury vehicles, in an effort to clear dealer lots for 2008 models.
Quality Gains
In addition, the automaker is touting the results of the annual J.D. Power & Associates Initial Quality Study released June 6. Ford had four brands, Lincoln, Jaguar, Mercury and Ford, in the survey's top 10.
GM, Ford and Chrysler have relied on truck sales for profits, models that have been most affected by gasoline prices.
``It's been a tough go for these companies because they've been largely dependent on big vehicles and the market is moving away from big vehicles,'' said John Casesa, managing partner at Casesa Strategic Advisors in New York.
There were 27 selling days in June, one more than a year earlier. The analysts' estimates for GM, Ford and Chrysler adjust for the difference. Bloomberg and some automakers use unadjusted percentage comparisons, which would be about 4 points higher.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I wonder how long all these automakers will be able to talk about "increased market shares" in light of the decreasing numbers of births in industrialized countries.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

That's nice, but if sales continue down while others trend up, they will eventually cross. GM is still not making the profits it should be making. Hopefully, it will turn around before it is too late.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Maybe, but is one looks at the sales figures, the newest cars and crossover vehicles from GM and Ford are trending up in sales, not down. What is happening is the total number of trucks is down. Over half of GM and Ford sales, over the past nearly ten years, have been in light trucks Import sales gains are primarily is their midget car sales, to buyers of second cars or those who no not buy new vehicles often, generally.. Most of the growth in import sales over the past ten years have been in light trucks and luxury cars. When it come to trucks however imports trucks are an also ran compared to light truck form GM, Ford and Chrysler. The top selling vehicles in the US today are trucks, not cars
mike

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.