Despite today being April Fools' Day, not one of the sales figures reported by automakers below for the month of March 2009 is a joke. The U.S. auto industry's sales slide continues, and despite the overall market selling more vehicles in March versus February, nearly all brands fell versus the same month in 2008.

The lone notable exceptions are Subaru and Kia. These two brands have ignored industry trends all year long, and this month Subaru posted a small 2.6% loss in sales volume versus last year. Adjusted for the daily average sales rate, however, Subaru sales were up 1.3%. Likewise, Kia's sales by volume were down just 0.6%, but its DSR was up by 3.4%. Hyundai also continues to hold its own, reporting a 4.8% fall in sales volume versus March 2008.

As for the rest of the industry, it appears that the performance gap between import and domestic automakers is narrowing, with Honda (-36.3%), Nissan (-37.7%) and Toyota (-39.0%) all reporting sales declines much closer to those of Chrysler (-39.3%), Ford (-40.9%) and General Motors (-44.7%). In fact, we've read a number of reports this afternoon that claim domestic sales were not as bad as expected. And that ain't no joke.


BY THE NUMBERS - March 2009
Brand Vol. % Change Total Sales 3/09 Total Sales 3/08 DSR* % Change Daily Avg. 3/09 Daily Avg. 3/08
Acura -32.2% 9,005 13,288 -29.5% 360 511
Audi -19.4% 6,433 7,986 -16.2% 257 307
BMW -24.2% 17,520 23,115 -21.2% 701 889
Buick -40.2% 7,369 12,317 -37.8% 295 474
Cadillac -53.0% 8,209 17,453 -51.1% 328 671
Chevrolet -42.5% 94,704 164,564 -40.1% 3,788 6,329
Chrysler -51.9% 19,502 40,539 -50.0% 780 1,559
Dodge -32.8% 57,728 85,906 -30.1% 2,309 3,304
Ford -41.7% 109,490 187,828 -39.4% 4,380 7,224
GMC -50.3% 19,086 38,422 -48.3% 763 1,476
Honda -36.7% 79,374 125,446 -34.2% 3,175 4,825
HUMMER -75.9% 831 3,451 -75.0% 33 133
Hyundai -4.8%
40,721
42,796
-1.0%
1,629
1,646
Infiniti -47.6% 7,242 13,821 -45.5% 290 532
Jeep -40.5% 23,771 39,941 -38.1% 951 1,536
Kia -0.6%
24,724
24,871
3.4%
989
957
Lexus -42.9%
14,239
24,939
-40.6%
570
959
Lincoln -33.0% 7,310 10,913 -30.3% 292 420
Mazda -33.3% 21,974 32,929 -30.6% 879 1,267
Mercedes -25.0% 15,602 20,808 -22.0% 624 800
Mercury -42.0% 8,307 14,333 -39.7% 332 551
MINI -15.9% 3,605 4,289 -12.6% 144 165
Mitsubishi -57.0% 4,620 10,750 -55.3% 185 413
Nissan -36.2% 59,392 93,100 -33.7% 2,376 3,581
Pontiac -30.8% 17,583 25,417 -28.0% 703 978
Porsche -29.1%
1,749
2,467
-26.3%
70
95
Saab -57.3% 1,265 2,962 -55.6% 51 114
Saturn -59.6% 7,333 18,146 -58.0% 293 698
Subaru -2.6% 16,249 16,685 1.3% 650 642
Suzuki -24.0%
7,981
10,510
-21.0%
319
404
Toyota -38.5%
118,563
192,791
-36.0%
4,743
7,415
VW -19.7%
15,720
19,587
-16.5%
629
753
Volvo -31.4% 6,358 9,263 -28.6% 254 356
COMPANIES
BMW Group -22.9% 21,125 27,404 -19.8% 845 1,054
Chrysler LLC -39.3% 101,001 166,386 -36.9% 4,040 6,399
FoMoCo -40.9% 131,465 222,337 -38.5% 5,259 8,551
General Motors -44.7% 156,380 282,732 -42.5% 6,255 10,874
Honda America -36.3% 88,379 138,734 -33.7% 3,535 5,336
Nissan NA -37.7% 66,634 106,921 -35.2% 2,665 4,112
Toyota Mo Co -39.0%
132,802
217,730
-36.6%
5,312
8,374
*March 2009 had 25 selling days versus 26 selling days for March 2008