Auto Sales Bounce Back in September

Auto Sales Bounce Back in September”

Toyota, Ford, General Motors, Nissan and Volkswagen all posted strong monthly USA sales numbers, confirming expectations that a boost in sales from hurricane-ravaged Texas would push the industry to a September rebound.

Delta carried 14.6 million passengers during September, a 2.3 percent fall from the same month a year ago.

But others warned high inventory levels and record consumer discounts remained a concern moving forward.

US light-vehicles sales slipped 1.8 percent last month and the seasonally adjusted, annualized pace of sales fell to the lowest level - 16.13 million - since February 2014 behind a late-month.

Ford light-duty-vehicle volume totaled 215,366 units in September, up 8.5% from 198,547 year-ago.

Ford Motor Co's sales rose 8.7 per cent in September, with those to consumers up 4.4 per cent and lower-margin fleet sales up 25.1 per cent. F-Series pickup truck sales soared 21.4 per cent, benefiting from the popularity of pickups in Texas.

GM's 12 percent jump marked a second straight strong month after a tepid start to 2017. Honda Motor Co. posted a 7% increase, to 142,722 units, led by sales of the Civic compact vehicle.

The bulge in fleet orders appeared to help the Ford brand the most, with sales jumping 4.7% daily amid strong showings from fleet stalwarts such as the Fusion (down less than 1%) and C-Max (up 1.2%). Volkswagen said its sales rose 33.2 percent over numbers that were depressed a year ago by its diesel emissions cheating scandal. On the brighter side, its September US truck sales stood firm at 134,746 units with significant gains of ~28.5% YoY.

Buyers looking to replace storm-totaled vehicles should also continue to boost sales, analysts predicted. Auto demand slipped 1.3 percent and utility volume rose 1.8 percent, Ford said.

Every FCA US brand aside from Alfa Romeo posted a decline.

Sales rose 6.6 percent at Kia, ending the brand's 8-month skid, 3.4 percent at Mazda and 17 percent at Mitsubishi. The resulting load factor was down 0.2 percentage points at 84.4 percent.

The Honda division, up 7.4 percent, drove a 6.8 percent increase at American Honda, with Acura advancing 1 percent.

In fact, sales are a bit flat.

Analysts and industry consultants had predicted that hurricanes Harvey and Irma would provide automakers with their first monthly gains in 2017. For the year through September, VW sales are 252,456 units, up 9.2 percent, company figures show.

With consumer demand slipping amid income growth, steady jobs gains, low interest rates and rising US equity markets, dealers and automakers have been forced to dangle bigger deals to spur showroom traffic. ALG says the average new-vehicle incentives rose 1.5 percent to $3,742 last month over September 2016, with GM, Nissan and FCA US the biggest spenders among mass-market automakers.

Toyota Motor Corp.'s sales surged 15% to 226,632 vehicles, bolstered by strong demand for its revamped Camry sedan.

Jessica Caldwell, an executive director of industry analysis, stated that although sales are up automakers have been struggling to reduce inventories around the country.

GM inventory reduced to 76 days supply from August's 88 days supply, positive progress since analysts believe they are the primary reason of the industry's oversupply of unsold new vehicles.

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