• Aug 1st 2006 at 5:04PM
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The numbers for July have rolled in and we bet most manufacturers wish they would roll right back out. Of the 34 brands that have reported their July sales so far, 22 are reporting a drop in monthly sales versus the same period last year.

The Chrysler Group's drop has attracted the most attention thus far, with each of the group's three brands (Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep) reporting between a 34% and 35% drop in sales. The few bright spots Chrysler pointed out include the Chrysler 300 gaining 4% and the Dodge Charger jumping 53% in sales over last July. The newly arrived Jeep Compass wasn't on lots long in July, but did manage to move 707 units.

The big theme of July's sales figures is that truck and SUV sales are dragging down sales as a whole. Chevy's passenger car sales were up 18.2% in July at 81,430 units, but the brand's truck division fell 27.9% so that total sales were down 17.1%. While Ford's passenger car sales were down only 5.6%, its truck and SUV sales fell 44.1%, producing brand-wide sales that were 35.7% below July 2005.

Of course, no one is surprised how harsh the hot summer month of July has been considering the successful sales incentives of last summer. Except, perhaps, the Chrysler Group, which was the only automaker to reinstate employee pricing again this summer yet still get whacked with a big drop in sales. Meanwhile, Toyota Motor Co. and Honda America continue their aggressive grab for market share by posting a 16.21% and 10.2% rise in sales last month, respectively.

Big Winner:
Isuzu 34.2%

Big Loser:
Saab -41.2%

Acura –4.9% at 18,203 (July 2005: 19,909)
Audi –2.6% at 7,005 (July 2005: 7,190)
BMW –13.4% at 20,083 (July 2005: 23,178)
Buick –34.7% at 23,609 (July 2005: 37,618)
Cadillac –21.8% at 19,124 (July 2005: 25,431)
Chevrolet –17.1% at 244,080 (July 2005: 306,160)
Chrysler –35% at 38,124 (July 2005: 61,193)
Dodge –35% at 76,394 (July 2005: 122,673)
Ford –35.7% at 199,735 (July 2005: 310,757)
GMC –36.5% at 48,085 (July 2005: 78,717)
Honda 12.7% at 133,601 (July 2005: 123,308)
HUMMER –2.7% at 6,991 (July 2005: 7,476)
Hyundai 6.2% at 47,205 (July 2005: 44,431)
Infiniti –18.1% at 10,548 (July 2005: 13,395)
Isuzu 34.2% at 1,336 (July 2005: 1,035)
Jaguar –15.1% at 1,997 (July 2005: 2,353)
Jeep –34% at 35,831 (July 2005: 56,280)
Kia 2.3% at 26,429 (July 2005: 26,052)
Land Rover –30.6% at 3,524 (July 2005: 5,080)
Lexus 5.6% at 26,959 (July 2005: 26,562)
Lincoln –21.5% at 9,125 (July 2005: 11,621)
Mazda 5% at 25,963 (July 2005: 24,820)
Mercedes 3.8% at 21,591 (July 2005: 20,791)
Mercury –34.1% at 16,635 (July 2005: 25,238)
MINI -3.7% at 3,528 (July 2005: 3,662)
Mitsubishi 1.2% at 10,376 (July 2005: 10,376)
Nissan –16% at 75,860 (July 2005: 93,905)
Pontiac .1% at 40,993 (July 2005: 42,541)
Saab –41.2% at 3,658 (July 2005: 6,469)
Saturn –4.3% at 22,516 (July 2005: 24,471)
Subaru - 5% at 18,923 (July 2005: 17,959)
Suzuki 13% at 8,030 (July 2005: 7,125)
Toyota 17.71% at 214,867 (July 2005: 189,855)
Volkswagen 5% at 22,627 (July 2005: 21,553)
Volvo –10.2% at 10,323 (July 2005: 11,499)


BMW Group
–12% at 23,611 (July 2005: 26,840)
Chrysler Group –35% at 150,349 (July 2005: 240,146)
Ford Motor Co –34.2% at 241,339 (July 2005: 366,548)
General Motors –19.5% at 410,332 (July 2005: 530,027)
Honda America 10.2% at 151,804 (July 2005: 143,217)
Nissan North America –16.2% at 86,408 (July 2005: 107,300)
Toyota Motor Co. 16.21% at 241,826 (July 2005: 216,417)

Editors note: most percentages are reported as the change in daily sales rate (DSR) since there were only 25 selling days in July 2006 versus 26 selling days in July 2005. We found many automakers had averaged out the amount of vehicles sold per day in July of both years and used that figure to calculate the percentage of loss or gain year-over-year.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      These figures are pretty much expected, yes? I see about 5-10 new Camrys every day just going to and from work... and when I pass a dealership, I really don't see many around. People are snapping them up quick!

      American automakers just aren't doing it for me right now.

      I'm glad to see VW seems to be doing decently right now and the new Rabbit sales were very promising for July. Their new clever marketing campaigns and reworked "people's car" image seem to be paying off. I predict sales will continue to increase as the Eos hits dealerships and the new Jetta price cuts go into effect for '07.

      I hope Nissan will rebound with the introduction of several redesigned vehicles soon. I actually am quite fond of the looks of the new Sentra and Altima, but I'm not quite sure what they were thinking with the Versa.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Re: Isuzu. They sold all of 1336 units, so big percentage swings are not surprising (100 units out of 1000 is 10%; out of 100000 units it's 0.1%)

      Re: Saab. I'm surprised they're still alive. They have the nice but ancient 9-3, the even more ancient 9-5, and a Trailblazer with Swedish makeup. What a lineup. Have GM actually put out a genuinely new Saab since they've owned it? At least they finally seem to realize that Saab can be their technology leader.

      Re: Ford. They make 3 compelling products, the F-150, the Mustang, and the GT. In a time of high gas prices they desperately need to cover the compact and subcompact end, which they have in Europe but not here. Instead of bringing them stateside, they worry about ... a 3 bar grill. With that kind of management, they're doomed.

      Re: Chrysler group. They recently released the Charger and Caliber, and the Magnum and 300C aren't that old. What's up with that?

      Looks like a moderately grim year overall, except for the Asian companies, Nissan excepted (and Merc and VW, but the other way).
      • 9 Years Ago
      Toyota already is #2 globally behind GM, and has been for about 2 years now. Earlier this year, they passed DCX for 3rd in the US. Now this month, they pass Ford for the first time in the US to take the #2 spot. I saw global sales figures for the 1st 6 months of this year. Toyota is only about 300k units behind GM for the first 6 months of this year. Considering that only 2 years ago, GM produced 2 million more cars than Toyota annually, looks like they will supplant GM globally either this year or next.

      Toyota has a great lineup of vehicles right now, and will be releasing even more refreshed versions in the next 12 months. Camry is the #1 selling car by far. And my understanding is the Camry is pretty sold out at most dealers. Corolla is the #2 selling car, and is setting sales records in the US this year. New FJ cruisers have rocketed in sales since being released in March (cool vehicle by the way,and a real offroad vehicle - going to eat the Hummers and some of the Jeep products for lunch the next few years).

      I know many are trying to rationalize the Big 3 sales figures vs last year, by factoring in the incentive fires sales of 2005. However, when you look at the raw number of units, the sales drops by GM, Ford, and DCX are absolutely astounding. Between them, they sold 330,000 LESS vehicles than July 2005. That is almost hard to believe.

      I am really worried about Ford and DCX. GM does seem to be making some good moves, even if slower that Kerkorian would like. Ford just does not have any kind of a product mix right now. And doesn't look like they will for another 2 years. They need some fresh ideas and management from outside the Ford family. And even though I like the "Dr Z" commercials, things must be bad if you are having to rehash Lee Iococca advertising from the 1980's.

      Many bash Toyota and Honda here. But in a free market, ultimately the customer speaks with their dollars. So even though many think Toyota's quality is slipping, and designs are boring, bottom line is the people buying the cars and trucks don't think so.

      • 8 Years Ago
      Where did this information about the numbers
      come from? I am doing some research and wanted
      to know where all the sales figures came from?

      • 9 Years Ago
      I'm sure there is an explanation for this but... The numbers seem a bit off.

      Company 2006 2005 % Diff Diff Article Diff
      BMW Group 23,611 26,840 -12% -3,229 –12%
      Chrysler 150,349 240,146 -37% -89,797 –35%
      Ford 241,339 366,548 -34% -125,209 –34.2%
      GM 410,332 530,027 -23% -119,695 –19.5%
      Honda 151,804 143,217 6% 8,587 10.2% Nissan 86,408 107,300 -19% -20,892 –16.2%
      Toyota 241,826 216,417 12% 25,409 16.21%
      All N.A. 1,305,669 1,630,495 -15% -324,826

      For one the GM, Chrysler, Nissan, Toyota and Honda numbers are off.

      Anyhow, If I were Toyota and Honda I wouldn't think this is such a great turn out, as the North American Market shrunk by -324,826 and they only picked up a relatively small percentage of it. This means 300k buyers put off buying a new car or they bought a used on. Not exactly the outcome any company wants.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Saab's nosedive is totally understandable because of last year's employee discount blowout. They actually had a good month compared with the rest of the year, and they probably won't have a huge sales hangover later this year.

      I don't know who would buy an Isuzu now, but with 1336 sold last month, there's not much to write home about. If I wanted an Isuzu, I'd buy a GM.

      Even though GM was down like 20%, they still had a pretty good month. Ford and Chrysler had terrible months and it doesn't look a whole lot better for them. And Nissan is totally down the drain now.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Ryan, how many of those GM sales are for fleets?
      Still, the bump in passenger cars sales is impressive, if only they hadn't bet on trucks and SUVs.
      • 9 Years Ago
      #11 I think the issue at Nissan is almost exactly as you say. They introduced a whole bunch of new trucks in the last few years, while their car line-up has been aging. They delayed the new Sentra a year and that seems to be hurting them now. I would expect this downturn in Nissan sales to continue for another month or so until the new 2007 Altima and Sentra are out. The Versa and refreshed Maxima seem to be selling well so far and if that holds true for the rest of the year, along with the new Altima and Sentra, they should boost sales nicely by the end of this year into next.
      • 9 Years Ago
      #24 i wonder where american cars got that reputation you speak of? could it be from anti american crap like CONSUMER REPORTS? CR should mostly be used in out door toilets.. not for unbiased research.. they are bought and paid for by the japs..
      • 9 Years Ago
      I look at these numbers and I am so not surprised. I feel so sorry for the Big 2.5, I really do. Most importantly, I feel for the people who it will really affect, which will be the good American blue collar workers who will eventually lose out. However, I do not share my compassion with the GM, Ford and DCX as a company. It is so embarrassing that American companies have fallen this far behind.

      Ford: What have they done...all the talk about the new Fusion/Milan, the car is okay...but its a Mazda 6!! And Lincoln produced the Zephyr (which is priced too high). Ford produces great trucks, but right now with gas prices they have to have more to offer the public than the F150/Explorers. And Mercury have forever been a brand of rebadging.

      GM: They are doing better, but more rebadging that does not amount to much. The Malibu is poor excuse for a Camry/Accord fighter, and the Impala will not hold a candle to the Avalon/Maxima etc. Now Cadillac has the idea, they are producing nice cars I dont know why their not selling!

      DCX: Now this company should really be up...The 300c was such a success. They should have took that success and ran with it. I still love the 300c, but for a mid-size Accord/Camry/Sonata rival they produce that ugly, hideous Sebring (I just could not believe the approved that for production).

      Ford, GM & DCX will not make profits until they will offer products that rival Honda, Toyota...or (DRUMROLL) Hyundai. Compare the Malibu/Fusion/Sebring to the Accord/Camry/Sonata...that all thats needs to be said. The American vehicles have nothing to offer entry luxury/sports lovers like the G35/Acura TL/BMW 3 either.

      Lastly, American companies are falling due to the poor reputation that precedes them. This generation does even look to go to a Ford/GM dealership because they have such a tainted reputation for unreliable/poor vehicles. I really want to see GM/Ford prosper, but they have their work cut out for them...the Japanese are Juggernauts.
      • 9 Years Ago
      if you will take your calculator to those percentages you will find american decline is exaggerated and the japonese increase is also exaggerated... check it out...
      • 9 Years Ago
      ISUZU UP 34%! wow, who would want one?
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