As the second month of 2017 begins, Dearborn-based automaker Ford Motor Co. announced its January retail sales were 120,400 vehicles, a six percent increase, while total U.S. sales were down one percent.
Ford’s F-Series sales totaled 57,995 trucks last month, a 13 percent increase, supported by strong retail gains in both the F-150 and Super Duty models. F-Series was up 19 percent in retail, with gains in every region, and January represented the best sales start for F-Series since 2004.
“The new year brought strong consumer demand for F-Series, Lincoln, and record SUV sales, especially high-end models,” says Mark LaNeve, Ford vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service. “This drove near-record company average transaction prices for Ford, up $2,500 versus a year ago and far outpacing the overall January industry increase of $550.”
A strong performance by the Lincoln Continental, with 1,167 cars sold, contributed to the brand’s overall 22 percent increase. Additional contributors included Lincoln MKZ sales of 2,090 and Lincoln MKC with 1,668 sales, a 7 percent and 16 percent increase respectively.
Detroit automaker General Motors Co. also released their January sales information, “affirming a positive outlook,” despite U.S. dealers delivering 195,909 cars, trucks, and crossovers — a 3.8 percent decrease year over year. Similarly, retail sales totaled 155,010 units, down 4.9 percent. The company did, however, set a new January record for average transaction prices.
“In early January, we focused on profitability while key competitors sold down their large stocks of deeply discounted, old-model-year pickups,” says Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president of sales operations. “We gained considerable sales momentum as we rebuilt our mid-size pickup, SUV and compact crossover inventories from very low levels following record-setting December sales.”
GM saw a range of increases across all four of its brands, with the Chevrolet Cruze up 22 percent, the Volt up 56 percent, and the Trax up 40 percent in the models’ best-ever January retail sales. Buick crossover deliveries were up 20 percent, and deliveries of the GMC Acadia were up 15 percent compared to 2016. Cadillac sales increased by 1 percent.
McNeil adds that GM is optimistic about 2017 because “the economy is strong and the company’s four brands are dramatically expanding their product offerings in fast-growing crossover segments.”
Fiat Chrysler Automotive also today announced their January sales of 152,218 units, an 11 percent decrease compared to sales in January 2016. Fleet sales were also down 31 percent year-over-year as FCA US continues its strategy of reducing sales to the daily rental segment. Fleet sales represented 28 percent of total sales for the month.
Ram Truck brand sales increased 5 percent in January, a 4 percent sales gain compared to 2016. The Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Grand Cherokee models reported sales increases, led by a 52 percent increase in Jeep Renegade sales. Sales of the Jeep Grand Cherokee, the brand’s volume leader in January, were up 24 percent for the month. Likewise, sales of the Dodge Journey midsize crossover increased 9 percent, while Fiat 500 sales grew 24 percent since January 2016.
Sales of the Chrylser Pacifica, the most awarded minivan of 2016, were up in its first month of year-over-year comparisons.
Alfa Romeo brand sales increased 59 percent compared to the same month a year ago, and Maserati brand sales increased 69 percent in the same timeframe.