November Vehicle Sales Down for Ford, Some Segments Improve

While vehicle sales for Dearborn’s Ford Motor Co. were down 20.9 percent in November from the previous year and down 16.8 percent from 2019 for year-to-date sales, the automaker saw an uptick in Super Duty, Explorer, and Transit Van sales.
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2021 F-150
F-Series sales were down in November due to a lower inventory from the COVID-19 related production stoppage and transition to the 2021 F-Series, which began shipping to dealers at the end of the month. // Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Co.

While vehicle sales for Dearborn’s Ford Motor Co. were down 20.9 percent in November from the previous year and down 16.8 percent from 2019 for year-to-date sales, the automaker saw an uptick in Super Duty, Explorer, and Transit Van sales.

Sales decreased for trucks, SUVs, and cars by 20.9 percent, 16.4 percent, and 39.1 percent, respectively, for November 2020 compared to November 2019. Over the course of the month, total U.S. sales was 149,931 units.

November’s total industry declined 15 percent on total sales of 1.24 million vehicles. At retail, Ford estimated the industry was off 12 percent, while fleet was down 25 percent. Industry declines are largely attributed to one less weekend in November this year than last year and a renewed focus on stay home policies due to rising COVID-19 cases.

F-Series sales were impacted by lower inventories attributed to the lingering effects of the second quarter coronavirus production stoppage combined with the transition to the all-new F-150. While Super Duty sales were up 7.5 percent, all-new 2021 F-150s began shipping to dealers at the end of November.

“Super Duty sales produced a strong gain in November with sales up 7.5 percent,” says Mark LaNeve, vice president of U.S. marketing, sales, and service. “F-150 inventory continued to tighten as we moved through our Q4 changeover to the all-new F-150. This was a result of coronavirus-related production stoppages in Q2 and a strong sell -down of the current model F-150. Dealers are really looking forward to the 2021 F-150, which is now in transit, as well as Bronco Sport and the all-new Mustang Mach-E.”

The F-Series has sold 713,325 pickup trucks through November. Ford says the F-Series is on track to record its 44th straight year as America’s best-selling pickup.

The Ford Fusion and Fiesta continued to wind down as the company transitions from cars to SUVs. Ford sales adjusted for F-150’s transition and the discontinuance of the cars were down 7.4 percent, less than the overall industry decline of 15 percent.

Commercial and government fleet sales recovered and were up 7 percent and 14 percent, respectively, compared to the previous year. Daily rental fleets continue to weight on the overall fleet total, with sales down 87 percent.

Explorer sales totaled 18,848, up 21.9 percent over the previous year. Ford also reported its first sales of the 2021 Bronco Sport.

Led by Transit, Ford van sales gained 5.2 percent on sales of 16,322 vehicles. Transit Van sales generated a 13.9 percent gain on sales of 9,917 vehicles. The van also saw a 70 percent increase in sales to commercial customers for the month. It has a 31 percent total share of the full-size van segment.

Mustang retail sales gained 7.4 percent, expanding its retail share of segment 1.4 percentage points, totaling just over 32 percent share. Combined November retail sales of Shelby GT350 and GT500 increased 33 percent. Mustang sales overall totaled 4,119 cars for the month, which is down over the previous year.

With the overall large premium SUV segment down in November, Lincoln’s Aviator gained about 3 percentage points of share in November compared to the previous year at 12 percent share.

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