Ford F series loses title as top-selling vehicle in May
June 3, 2008 - 2:17 pm ET
The Ford F-150 pickup truck has been dethroned as America's favorite vehicle
for the first time since 1991 -- by two Toyota sedans.
According to preliminary sales figures released by automakers, Ford Motor
Co. sold 42,973 F-series trucks in May, while Toyota Motor Corp. sold 52,826
Corollas and 51,291 Camrys.
The last time a car outsold the F series was October 1991.
Jim Farley, Ford group vice president for marketing and communications, said
the F series' loss to Toyota's cars was a "significant development."
"But it's not surprising, given the fuel price," Farley said. "That's just a
sign of the times. I think May has been a watershed month."
Toyota said Corolla sales rose 12.4 percent in May, but were down 9.5
percent for the first five months compared with the same period a year ago.
Camry sales have been flat.
A structural shift
"The all-new Corolla really found its stride this month," Toyota Motor Sales
President Jim Lentz said in a statement. "Launched amid soaring fuel prices
and economic uncertainty, Corolla strikes a sweet spot for buyers seeking
refinement in addition to fuel efficiency and affordability."
Ford CEO Alan Mulally said the fact that cars are outselling trucks is
further evidence that the industry is undergoing a change in consumer
"We really believe we are seeing a structural shift with the fuel prices
going through the $3.40-to-$3.60" range. It's interesting that a lot of
others are saying the same thing now," Mulally told reporters Monday, June
2, at a dinner in Washington.
"So I think we're seeing a structural shift where, with the prices being
high in the United States, we're seeing exactly what happened in Europe a
number of years ago, where the customers are going to make economic
decisions, and they're going to move toward smaller and medium-sized
Amy Wilson and Andrew Grossman contributed to this report.