• Jan 4th 2008 at 10:26AM
  • 54
While the big news story surrounding 2007 sales is that Toyota passed Ford as the No. 2 best-selling automaker in the U.S. last year, there were plenty of interesting battles happening between individual models, as well. The truck segment, though shrinking, is still the most competitive in the U.S. market, and 2007 saw the most serious challenge yet to the domestics' market dominance with the introduction of the 2007 Toyota Tundra.

While the F-Series pickup retained its title of Best-Selling Truck for the 31st year in a row (also the Best-Selling Vehicle in the U.S. for the 26th year in a row), its sales fell 13.2% to 690,589. And to think, the F-Series' best-selling year ever was just three years ago in 2004 when it sold 939,511 units. Give the F-Series credit, however, for retaining its No. 1 position despite a brand new Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra on the market. GM's new GMT900 trucks did help the automaker mitigate a similar sales slide, with sales falling only 2.8% to 618,257 for the Silverado and 1.2% to 208,243 for the Sierra in 2007. The Dodge Ram also did well despite the shrinking market, with sales off just 2% at 358,295.

The Toyota Tundra, however, is the story the year...

Follow the jump for more analysis and the raw sales numbers for trucks sold in the U.S. last year.

[Sources: Ford, GM, Chrysler LLC, Toyota, Nissan]
...Its sales were up 57.4% in 2007, a year in which Toyota sold both the old, smaller Tundra early on and the new, larger Tundra for the remainder of the year. Toyota boldly made the claim that it hoped to sell 200,000 Tundras in 2007, which it fell short of achieving by just 3,445 units. It did, however, come within spitting distance of passing the GMC Sierra to become the fourth best-selling truck in the U.S. Despite some quality issues and one official recall, we'd say Toyota overcame the odds to make a significant dent in the market.

And then there's Nissan, which just doesn't offer enough variations of its Titan pickup to be a real player in the segment. Nissan's actively seeking a partner to produce a diesel engine for the Titan, which if such a model were to beat its competitors to market, would help the truck's fortunes tremendously.

Since automakers don't break down their numbers, counting sales of both half-ton and heavy/super-duty trucks together, we can't tell you how, say, the F-150 fared against the new Chevy Silverado 1500. Also keep in mind that trucks were probably the most incentivized vehicles of the past year, with thousands of dollars dumped on the hoods of each to keep them moving off the lots. Nevertheless, the numbers speak for themselves, and they say that people are buying a lot less trucks than they have in a long time.

Ford F-Series: 690,589
Chevy Silverado: 618,257
Dodge Ram: 358,295
GMC Sierra: 208,243
Toyota Tundra: 196,555
Nissan Titan: 65,746

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      GM beats Ford and the Lincoln Mark LT combined. What did Lincoln sell? 10 Mark LT's last year.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Lincoln sold 415 more Mark LT's than Cadillac sold Escalade EXT's according to Automotive News.
      • 7 Years Ago
      To AZMike - Not quite sure about your capacity estimates for San Antonio and Princeton - What I understand (and our company supplies Tundra/Sequoia components) is that the maximum capacity was around 300,000 - combined, with overtime. 200k ~220k was "normal production" volume targets. Your estimate of Sequoia volume is closer - 65,000/year is a rumored target.

      Also keep in mind that the 2007 Tundra did not actually go on sale until mid-February of 2007. So for a "full 12 months of selling", they are very likely indeed to hit a 200k vehicle/year target.

      I am surprised they came as close as they did, with basically zero sales for the first 6-7 weeks of 2007!

      And the tactics you mentioned are "not unheard of in the industry" - in other words, they are playing the same game as the other makes.
        • 7 Years Ago
        GM was playing the game harder, actually. From what I understand everything shipped to a dealer counts as 'sold', and they've stuffed the dealers with unsold trucks:

        GM must purge pickup glut

        General Motors plans to chop pickup production in January, but it may be too late to avoid a fire sale. As of Dec. 1, inventories of the Chevrolet Silverado (153 days supply) and GMC Sierra (150 days) were bloated despite $5,000 rebates on 2007 models. The market for full-sized pickups has been soft since the housing industry went bust. But inventories of rival brands Ford, Dodge, Toyota and Nissan are closer to the industry norm of 60 days.

        From autonews
        • 7 Years Ago
        you might want to check your numbers with Automotive News: that's where I got mine.

        Toyota alluded to 350,000+ capacity with the San Antonio plant alone, but that was with only two shifts. it would be quite easy to add another shift, and crank up production to 500,000+ units.

        the Princeton (IN) facility has already produced 275,000 per year in the past, and that (again) is with only two shifts.

        as to your comments about the Tundra not having a full year on the market: Toyota set the 200K number right when the first ones were available in 2/07. they were definitely talking about calender year 2007, and that total included unloading the remaining '06 units.

        the interesting thing for me is that in spite of having all sorts of tactics, they still fell short of their supposed modest goal. the "new and shiny" are all gone from it now, and it's just another truck with big incentives.

        I think on of the most basic problems with the Tundra is Toyota's total lack of understanding on how truck buyers choose a truck. they think Tundra buyers can be shoehorned into vehicles just like camry and Corolla buyers. it just doesn't work.

        there are two basic problems:

        first, dealers cannot specifically order vehicles. at the beginning of every month, the zone rep calls each dealer and tells them what they are getting. essentially, Toyota just starts building trucks the way IT wants to, and fills the storage lots. they then call the dealer, and tell them what they are getting. the only input the dealer has is perhaps color; and not even that if they aren't on the best of terms with the factory.

        the second issue is with CHOICE. just go to the Toyota web site, and try to build a Tundra SR5 (mid-range model with cloth) with fog lamps and 20" wheels. no can do. to get those, you need to buy the Limited model, which is substantially more.

        now on any other domestic truck, once you reach a mid-line model, you can order just about any combination of things you want. and 90% of the items are free-standing options, unlike Toyota's "take it all or get nothing" packages.

        I had to laugh at some of the stock units I saw recently at a local Toyota dealer. they had eight identical "work trucks"; regular cab, long beds with the 4.7L engine.

        here is how they were equipped, and these were ALL factory options, not dealer-installed accessories:

        -carpeted mats (the floors were rubber!!)

        -automatic dimming inside mirror (just what you order on a work truck)

        -stainless door sill plates (the last firm thing your feet will touch before skidding that carpeted floor mat across the rubber floor)

        -all of them were dark gray, certainly not a popular work truck color choice anywhere, but even less likely here in Arizona.

        -and last, but not least, a Toyota Racing Development (TRD) dual exhaust system for "only" $995. just what you'd want on a truck you were giving employees to drive, right? we'll even skip over the fact that just about any muffler shop on earth could do the job for less than half of that.

        I can assure you that if someone in a domestic dealership ordered trucks like this, they'd be fired instantly; this just makes the Toyota dealers' job all the more difficult to move this metal.

        • 7 Years Ago
        Mike- While Princeton has built 275k vehicles, that's never been Tundra out-put. That plant also builds the (significant) Sienna and (less significant) Sequoia. Alloted production in Priceton was never more than 120k units. They've built a few more than that, but it starts to cost overtime at that point. Your 300k figure for TMMTX is reasonably correct.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'm a little suprised that Toyota narrowly missed their 200,000 sales goal for the Tundra. In the Spring of 2007, Jerry Flint over at Forbes predicted Toyota wouldn't make this sales goal...looks like he made that call correctly. They dumped tons of money in the factory and advertising campaign for this truck, and probably expected a great deal more sales than 200,000, probably more like 250,000 the first year. The fact that Toyota actually missed a sales projection (albeit closely) is a newsworthy story of its own. There was a lot of hoopla in the press and otherwise when the new Tundra was introduced that predicted the immediate destruction of the Detroit pick-up truck market, but that didn't exactly happen. Not to say it won't happen, (as it very well could eventually), but I think this goes to show the difficulty and competitiveness of the truck market. The Tundras are nice IMO as I've rode in one already, although their competition is making some excellent products in this segment too. Expect the truck wars to continue, and we the consumers reap the benefits of their competition.
        • 7 Years Ago
        you need to consider some of the tactics Toyota probably did, not unheard of in the car business.

        the one major one is to cut a deal to the dealerships themselves from the factory if they buy multiple trucks for the dealership: i.e., for parts department/delivery use, or anything else they might creatively think up.

        I've been in and around the car business most of my adult life, and owned a dealership for ten years. I can't even remember how many times the either dealership purchased
        10-15 vehicles on December 31, or brought in customers for the deal of a lifetime. the car business, like many others, is very numbers-oriented; always looking at month-end/year-end sales.

        with that being said, Toyota didn't make it, when they failed to meet even their modest goal. the bloom is definitely off of this rose, if there ever was one.

        it's too bad that the manufacturers don't break down numbers by model. even though the 1/2 ton market is the largest, the heavy duty truck market is worth at least 35-40% of the total, and Toyota doesn't compete here at all, and probably never will at this point.

        the Japanese by nature are very conservative, and really stuck their necks out on the whole concept of selling a full size, V-8 powered pickup. the San Antonio factory was built with much fanfare, and the capability for producing 500,000 trucks right in the heart of pickup country. factor in the capacity of the Princeton, Indiana factory at 350,000 more units; that makes for a total capacity of 850,000 units.

        the Princeton factory also builds the Sequoia; being very generous, let's say they sell 50,000 Sequoias annually.

        do you think that producing 250,000 units with a capacity of 850,000 is good utilization of production? I think not.

        let the monster Toyopet rebates begin!

      • 7 Years Ago

      If the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra were added together then the F150 would actually be the second best selling truck. Anyway the Sierra is just a rebadged Silverado with more upmarket trim and both could be counted as just a single model.
        • 7 Years Ago
        yea and if we do that why dont we combine the sales of the Lincon Mark LT while were at it....
        • 7 Years Ago
        What they need is platform sales figure. It would be interesting to know how much sales the automakers are ringing out of each platform. How many Focus, Mazda 3's, Volvo C30's? How many Toyota Camry/Lexus ES whatever (or is it Avalon/Lexus ES whatever?)? Anyway, it would be intersting to look at. How many G6's, Aura's and Malibu's does GM sell? How many Titan's, Armada's, and Infiniti Q56's(?) does Nissan sell?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Never said that the Cobalt was going to win this year, but they are in the fight. They were a non-factor two or three years ago.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Just because a truck is made in the USA doesn't mean its all American koncha. In the end the huge profits from that truck end up in some Japanese executives pockets anyway. Why would you want to pay several thousand more for a truck? I find it funny that the Japanese think they can bust in to a huge market like this and be competitive. Toyota thinks just because they put a big V8 and give it a big bubble ass and oversized grill people will think its a tough truck. If people want a tough truck they will go buy a Ford Powerstroke or a Chevy Duramax or a Dodge Cummins. If your going to put a truck out and be competitive dont send it out with 4 recalls in its first year.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The Tundra was 20 or so camshafts that failed. Hardly the quality disaster that was being portrayed and certainly not close to the claimed FOUR recalls. Like most internet legends, the Tundra quality has grown into a force into itself among the Big 2.5 fans. I also noticed that you didn't want to mention the other Silverado recall that resulted in trucks becoming very expensive ash.

        When it comes down to where the money ends up, Toyota executives end up with 1/4 the money that GM executives receive. So when you want to talk about helping American workers, you have to take into account the Mexicans and Canadians that are actually making them and the GM execs that shelter their four times larger paychecks into tax shelters that aren't even available to you (I assume) or I. The end money, profits, knows no nationality. It goes to shareholders and that is anyone, including you or me.

        My comment regarding the typical knowledge of corporate finance stands. Do you know who the largest owner of TM stock is? Fidelity. The largest retirement fund management firm in the United States. Do you know who the largest user of Fidelity retirement services is? GM.

        Its a complex web and it isn't as simple as saying buying GM is supporting America and buying Toyota is supporting Japan.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The 2007 Tundra had ONE recall: NHSTA #07V579000
        The 2007 Silverado had TWO recalls.

        The profits are distributed to the shareholders. Since Toyota stock is available to every American, just like GM and F stock, the profits for Toyota are just as American as GM and Ford.

        As a shareholder, I am more likely to see profits from Toyota than I am GM because Toyota executives receive about 1/4th the compensation of a GM executive. At least with respect to Toyota, executive compensation is a small part of total dividends disbursed as opposed to GM where executive compensation EXCEEDED total dividends disbursed in 2006 (the last year we have information).

        So, the truth is that buying a Silverado means you are more likely to be supporting foreign workers than if you bought a Tundra. It also means you are supporting overpaid corporate executives and the growing class differential in the United States.

        If you want a disclaimer, I drive a Ford. The problem is that there are too many latent racists posting that don't have a basic understanding of corporate finance to back up their xenophobic comments.
        • 7 Years Ago

        Koncha is right, though--and since you brought up the "profits" argument, he's right to point out that it's more complex than you're implying. You can't play a card and not expect someone to trump it.

        The profits from the GM trucks end up with executives and shareholders, and the costs that actually get paid to workers end up in Canada and Mexico as well. Where the profits go means very little; where the economic impact goes is more important, and if net impact of the GMT900s is outside of American borders, then the "buy American" argument is rather a weak one.

        Personally, I have family that work in Oshawa (Ontario, Canada) where many of the GMT900s are assembled. I'm glad that American truck buyers are paying Canadian wages.

        You mentioned that the profits go back to Japan; this may be true, but profits are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to economic impact. Where the whole dollar is spent matters much more.
        • 7 Years Ago
        "If people want a tough truck they will go buy a Ford Powerstroke or a Chevy Duramax or a Dodge Cummins."

        The truth is, there are over 196,000 new Tundra owners who would disagree with you. The sales figures don't lie. The Tundra WAS competitive in '07, and that's a fact. We'll see if they can keep it up in '08.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Didn't people say the exact same thing about Japanese manufacturers making cars that weren't extremely tiny? That they'd never be able to enter the market of mid-size and full-size vehicles? It's difficult to enter ANY market, but it's even harder to maintain your share of the market. If you ask me Japan's giving America a run for its money, pushing GM and Ford to up quality standards. I'd take an F150 over a Tundra, but don't say that Japan has no place in this market, that's just asking them to work even harder.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Guess what, no one in this thread gives a rip about your finance knowledge. Last time I checked this is AUTOblog not FINANCEblog. So go back to your bean counting. For such a numbers person you might want to look at your numbers again on the recalls for Toyota, it affected 15,000 trucks. Sure maybe 4 claimed on the recall but the potential for failure is still out there. If you refer to the electrical recall for GM that effected 154 trucks. At the end of the day it all boils down to if I don't buy a Toyota truck Toyota stock holders don't get paid so don't get me a lecture about finance.
      • 7 Years Ago
      James if you don't give a crap about trucks why even read the thread?
        • 7 Years Ago

        Your arguments in this thread are all over the map and completely proven wrong by the data.

        You state that the Tundra's sales success in 2007 is simply a matter of a new model outselling the old. Sales of a new model helps, but not to the extent of 57% sales growth in a single model year.

        How do you explain that GM *lost* sales in 2007 with new model trucks? That busts your theory right up.

        You want to test your theory again next year? Let's wait for the new F150 and see if F150 sales go up 57% in the first year. Fat chance! Why? Overall truck market saturation, stagnation and real penetration from competitors like Toyota.

        Toyota has gone from zero to almost 200,000 annual Tundra sales in less than seven years in the most competitive sgement in the American auto industry. You can hate the Tundra all you want, call it soccer mom truck, whatever, but you can't deny that Toyota is stealing significant truck sales that would otherwise be going to Ford, GM or Chrysler. How else do explain the F150 losing 13% sales in on year while Tundra sales grew by 57%. The data tells the story unless you're willfully blind.

        The most important thing to watch out for: Toyota will keep improving their trucks and selling more of them, eating away at the last true domestic automotive stronghold long before Ford and Chrysler return to selling popular, mainstream mid-size sedans in high volume like the Camry and Accord (GM is on the right track with the Mlibu, however). Ford and Chrysler better figure things out and fast.

        • 7 Years Ago
        While I would never personally buy a truck, I care about the auto industry. Toyota is a major player in that industry whether you want to admit it or not.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Now that the "Turth About Tundras" is out, I seriously doubt that they will do as well next year.

      This segment will face continued hardships though.

      Automobiles are now more reliable and last longer than 10 - 15 years ago. People are now hanging on to their cars/trucks considerable longer than in the past. This is why emerging markets are so important to the industry. Existing markets are slowing down.

      '08 is going to be a big indication of things to come. Will Toyota be able to withstand the onslaught of blows to the head from GM.

      One indication of GM loosening Toyota's stranglehold, has been taking place on the undercard. Its the Cobalt/Corolla confrontation. The underdog Cobalt has been giving the Corolla one helluva fight. If the MalibuAura combination can take the Camry down, that would be a big ouch for Toyota. Their once prominent SUVCUV offerings are also gradually being sidelined.
        • 7 Years Ago
        You're right, Here are their September numbers alone. They actually had a hell of a 2nd half.

        Vehicle September 2007 sales Percent change
        1. Ford F-series pickup 56,056 -21 percent
        2. Chevrolet Silverado p/u 52,480 1 percent
        3. Toyota Camry 40,438 6 percent
        4. Honda Accord 35,031 26 percent
        5. Dodge Ram pickup 30,100 20 percent
        6. Toyota Corolla/Matrix 29,550 -9 percent
        7. Nissan Altima 27,871 41 percent
        8. Honda Civic 24,752 -6 percent
        9. Chevrolet Impala 23,172 6 percent
        10. Chevrolet Cobalt 19,794 30 percent

        • 7 Years Ago
        First half of 2007:
        Subcompacts: (fleet) | (retail) | (total) | (% fleet)
        Chevrolet Cobalt: 29,090 | 44,141 | 73,231 | 39.7%
        Toyota Corolla 22,999 | 121,348 | 144,347 | 15.9%

        Kind of a one-sided fight or did Cobalt sales skyrocket in the second half?
      • 7 Years Ago
      If GM didn't offer the GMC version of the Silverado, don't just assume they'd all go over and buy the Chevy. Frankly the GMC is the only one that looks decent of the two. The Chevy IMHO is UGLY!

      So i'd split up those sales in 3, like this: 1/2 to Chevy, 1/4 to Ford, rest to well the rest.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Never said that the Cobalt was going to win this year, but they are in the fight. They were a non-factor two or three years ago.
      • 7 Years Ago
      F150 number 1? No surprise there. In spite of the launch of the newish GMT900 and all the hype that went it, Ford still managed to frustrate the general! And lets have none of this nonsense about counting the GMC and the Chev together. In case you GM fanboys have forgotten GM itself considers them 2 distinct vehicles. They have to because it would be hard to justify their ridiculous badge engineering otherwise. Way to go Ford!
      • 7 Years Ago
      Building Toyota's in the US for an "American" image is only a small part of the parcel. Back in the seventies when Toyota and Datsun (Nissan) were "dumping" cars and small trucks here the well known trade wars were on. Japan subsidised Japanese manufacturers and put large tarriffs on our goods exported from not only us but our neighbors to the north as well. Pretty much the same thing they did to almost everything we made from tv's and stereo's to cameras and clothing. Well, the good ole US of A decided enouph was enouph. If Japan would'nt open their doors, we would put identical tarriffs on their goods coming in. The Toyota solution was simple. Build token factories in the good ole US of A and circumvent the threatened matching tarriffs but keeping Japans protectionist policies in place. In other words, they gave us the middle finger. So here they came and almost every small town in America was droolin to get a factory of any kind in their community offering tif's, free land and subsidies just to get a nod of maybe. Well who the h e double hocky sticks think paid for all those benefits? Yeah, we the dumb taxpayers.
      Go to youtube and link on Tundra bed bounce. Don't just stop there, link onto all of the subjects on the right. especially the ones where they hook a strap to the silverado, f150 and ram. Notice the fraud? The ram breaks traction purposely, and niether the ford or ram have limited slip diffs. the silverado I suspect has the v6. You decide. It's the same deceptive fraudulant advertising all of us have been subjected to since the "new" tundra was released.
      And for the kicks of it, log on "Tundratalk" and read all about the output shaft recalls, the bed bounce, the broken tailgates, vibrations, failed radios, dash rattles and squeaks, brakes wearing out, lousy mpg, and so on. If this were a new launch of any of the big three, the media would crucify and bury them.

      Up to six grand or 0% for 72 months in december. If Toyota did'nt offer this do you really think they would have sold that many? Sorry if the truth hurts you Toyboys, the Tundra IS a POS.
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