Toyota up big, Ford up a little while GM, Chrysler and Honda slip

Pardon the tardiness of this report, but most manufacturers decided to present their September sales figures in a misleading way by comparing the raw number of vehicles sold last month to those sold in September 2005. We prefer to compare the Daily Sales Rate, obtained by dividing the number of vehicles sold in a month by the number of selling days in that month. Since last month had 26 selling days and September of 2005 had 25, most automakers decided to mitigate their losses or pad their gains by taking advantage of that extra selling day in their comparisons. So it took us a little longer to go through and correct the data that was misleading, and indeed some positive performances fell into the red once corrected. Credit goes to General Motors, Toyota and a few others for not giving us more work to do and providing the Daily Sales Rate to begin with. So forget about the numbers you see plastered all over the internet and the news, these are the real numbers. So lets begin...

Toyota is officially on a tear. Its sales in the month of September rose 20.2% versus the same time last year. The Toyota division itself increased sales 21.3% last month to 197,250 units, firmly placing it ahead of Chevrolet for the month and not far behind the Ford brand.

Speaking of Ford, the Blue Oval has some good news finall thanks to a September that saw sales for the company rise a modest .66%. The Focus and Mustang had big gains and the Fusion triplets continue to sell well. What helped the most, however, was surprisingly strong performances from the Explorer, Expedition and F-Series, all of which were up last month. Aren't these things supposed to be losing popularity?

General Motors and the Chrysler Group both took modest dips last month of 6.8% and 7.5%, respectively. However, it was Honda falling off 7.76% that was the big surprise. Apparently, the new Civic's sheen is beginning to wear off and the Accord, as great a mid-size family sedan as it is, is beginning to look staid next to the new Toyota Camry, Ford Fusion and Hyundai Sonata.

Biggest Winner

Saab 48.8% at 3,069 (9/05: 1,983)
Commendable Month
Toyota 21.28% at 197,250 (9/05: 156,381)

Biggest Loser
Jaguar –47.8% at 1,158 (9/05: 2,135)
Scary Month
Dodge –20.8% at 79,784 (9/05: 96,890)

BRANDS
Acura –5.64% at 16,323 (9/05: 16,634)
Audi 2% at 8,004 (9/05: 7,854)
BMW –11.31% at 20,339 (9/05: 22,052)
Buick –11.1% at 19,463 (9/05: 21,050)
Cadillac 17.8% at 20,217 (9/05: 16,507)
Chevrolet –10.6% at 190,825 (9/05: 205,238)
Chrysler 0.0% at 47,211 (9/05: 45,546)
Dodge –20.8% at 79,784 (9/05: 96,890)
Ford 3.26% at 204,070 (9/05: 190,012)
GMC 1.1% at 39,141 (9/05: 37,233)
Honda –8.1% at 99,903 (9/05: 104,529)
HUMMER 11.6% at 6,739 (9/05: 5,806)
Hyundai –16% at 33,384 (9/05: 38,214)
Infiniti –9.8% at 10,378 (9/05: 11,062)
Isuzu 16.6% at 1,397 (9/05: 1,152)
Jaguar –47.8% at 1,158 (9/05: 2,135)
Jeep 21.62% at 41,893 (9/05: 33,120)
Land Rover 2.61% at 3,469 (9/05: 3,425)
Lexus 12.1% at 25,700 (9/05: 22,036)
Lincoln –26.91% at 7,362 (9/05: 9,686)
Mazda 2.19% at 20,261 (9/05: 19,918)
Mercedes 8.86% at 19,873 (9/05: 17,552)
Mercury –5.77% at 13,117 (9/05: 13,385)
MINI –5.84% at 2,964 (9/05: 3,027)
Mitsubishi 9.24% at 10,287 (9/05: 9,054)
Nissan –9.1% at 77,962 (9/05: 82,478)
Pontiac –13.6% at 37,376 (9/05: 41,597)
Porsche –.61% at 2,339 (9/05: 2,263)
Saab 48.8% at 3,069 (9/05: 1,983)
Saturn 4.4% at 20,153 (9/05: 18,569)
Subaru –3.67% at 16,128 (9/05: 16,100)
Suzuki 7.0% at 7,940 (9/05: 7,131)
Toyota 21.28% at 197,250 (9/05: 156,381)
Volkswagen –10.79% at 20,082 (9/05: 21,646)
Volvo –2.24% at 9,672 (9/05: 9,514)

TBA: Kia

COMPANIES
BMW Group –10.6% at 23,303 (9/05: 25,079)
Chrysler Group –7.49% at 168,888 (9/05: 175,556)
Ford Motor Co .66% at 238,848 (9/05: 228,157)
General Motors –6.8% at 338,380 (9/05: 349,202)
Honda America –7.76% at 116,226 (9/05: 121,163)
Nissan North America –9.2% at 88,340 (9/05: 93,540)
Toyota Motor Co. 20.2% at 222,950 (9/05: 178,417)

Editors note: All percentages are reported as the change in daily sales rate (DSR) since there were 26 selling days in September 2006 versus 25 selling days in September 2005.