Ford, GM Post Modest Gains in Dec. 2017, FCA US Sales Decrease 11 Percent
SUV sales continued to increase across the Big Three.
Dearborn automaker Ford Motor Co. today announced total vehicle sales of 242,049 during Dec. 2017, a .9 percent increase compared to Dec. 2016. Specifically, full-year Ford sales totaled nearly 2.6 million at retail, with trucks up 4.3 percent, SUVs gaining 4.3 percent, and car sales down 15.2 percent.
“December capped off a record year for Ford brand SUVs, making it eight consecutive years of Ford brand sales leadership,” says Mark LaNeve, Ford’s vice president for U.S. marketing, sales, and service. “F-Series had an unbelievable year as we sold nearly 900,000 pickups, with strong high-end truck demand as customers continue to opt for our latest technology and equipment packages.”
Ford brand sales totaled nearly 2.5 million vehicles through 2017, with F-Series sales increasing 9.3 percent throughout 2017 for the line’s best performance since 2005. For December, F-Series trucks sold 89,385 units, the brand’s best December since 2005.
Ford brand SUV sales totaled 796,302 vehicles for the year, setting another all-time record. The Edge and Escape also achieved record sales during 2017, while the Explorer saw its best year since 2005. Specifically, SUV sales totaled more than 75,000 in December alone, representing a 10.3 percent year-over-year increase.
Mustang sales also increased 9.2 percent last month, with 7,714 cars sold, and Lincoln outpaced the luxury retail segment, finishing 2017 with a .2 percent increase, attributed to strong retail sales.
Detroit-based General Motors Co. today announced Dec. 2017 retail sales increased 2 percent, leading to an 18 percent retail share. The company delivered more than 3 million vehicles across the United States in 2017, including more than 1.3 million trucks and 965,090 crossovers. In the process, GM set annual sales records for pickup and crossover deliveries, electric vehicle sales, and average transaction prices.
GM also reduced year-end inventories to 752,554 units, down 90,000 from a year ago.
GM crossover deliveries increase 17 percent year-over-year, driven by record sales of the Chevrolet Equinox, Traverse, and Trax, as well as the Buick Envision, Buick Encore, and GMC Acadia. Crossovers helped deliver Buick its strongest calendar year sales since 2004, and the Buick Encore recorded its best year ever, having been Buick’s volume leader for three consecutive years. Crossovers now account for more than 80 percent of Buick’s retail deliveries, compared with about two thirds in 2016. Retail sales for the brand increased 26 percent, with the Enclave increasing 14 percent, the Encore up 9 percent, and Envision sales growing 167 percent.
Cadillac’s retail crossover deliveries also increased 9 percent, driven by the new XT5.
GM also reported sales of 948,909 pickup trucks and 239,719 full-size SUVs throughout the year. Total commercial and government deliveries were more than 296,000 units, the most since 2008. Commercial and government deliveries are now the largest component of GM’s fleet deliveries, following a cumulative reduction of 170,000 rental deliveries since 2014.
Auburn Hills-based FCA US reported sales of 171,946, an 11 percent decrease compared to Dec. 2016 sales of 192,519 units. Last month, retail sales of 150,772 units were down 2 percent compared to Dec. 2016 and represented 88 percent of total sales.
In line with FCA US’ strategy to reduce sales to the daily rental segment, fleet sales of 21,174 units were down, as expected, 42 percent year-over-year. The largest planned volume reduction in December fleet sales came from Jeep brand, which reduced fleet sales by 75 percent compared to last year. Fleet sales represented 12 percent of FCA US’ December sales.
Specifically, the Chrysler Pacifica minivan posted 8 percent year-over-year gains for its best December sales performance ever, and the Fiat 124 Spider posted record December sales as well. Other FCA US vehicles with year-over-year increases included the Chrysler 300, Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Compass, and Ram ProMaster City.
Overall, Chrysler brand sales increased 3 percent last month compared to Dec. 2016 and the Jeep Compass, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee delivered year-over-year increases. Ram Truck Brand sales also increased year-over-year and the Dodge Durango full-size SUV posted its best full year of sales since 2006.
Alfa Romeo brand sales were 2,034 units, a significant increase from Dec. 2016 and its strongest monthly sales of 2017.