It will be a while before June numbers are available from the local car dealers associations, but they'll probably mirror the terrible sales results reported today by the major automakers. Sales were down 28 percent at Ford, 36 percent at Chrysler, 21 percent at Toyota and 18 percent at General Motors and Nissan. GM's numbers were better than expected and boosted its stock by 12 percent (a no-interest financing sale probably helped). Truck sales really took it on the chin - Toyota was down 38.9 percent, GM down 16 percent, Ford down 40.5 percent and Chrysler down 30.1 percent. SUV sales are in the toilet, though sales appeared to stabilize later in the month, perhaps because the jump in gas prices finally slowed down. From the NYT:
Pickups and S.U.V.’s were discounted more than 13 percent on average in June, according to Edmunds.com. Yet dealers say the offers have not done as much to draw in customers as huge sales did several years ago. “Compared to a year ago, we’re off 65 to 70 percent,” said Preston Mays, sales manager for Superior Chevrolet, a G.M. dealership in Decatur, Ga. Mr. Mays said no-interest loans have become less effective than cash rebates because so many shoppers owe more on their current vehicle than it is worth, and the sour economy means they need a discount more than free financing. “People need these prices to go down,” he said. “They’re trying to put gas in the vehicle and feed their families.”
The most recent L.A.-area numbers are for May, but they show much the same story as the national figures for June. Looking at south Los Angeles County, car registrations fell 10.3 percent from the previous May, while truck registrations were down 30.7 percent. Most all the U.S. automakers got hammered in L.A., with Chevy down 33.8 percent, Chrysler down 38.7 percent and Ford down 36.8 percent. Faring about the best was Honda’s lineup of small cars. Its May registrations fell only 5.5 percent. All local numbers courtesy of the Southland Motor Car Dealers Association.