Chrysler comes roaring back

Sure, Chrysler Group sales were up an astonishing 25 percent last month and its dealer network deserves a pat on the back for clearly working their backsides off in April. That said, let's not forget the low bar that Chrysler had set for itself last year. Heading into bankruptcy, Chrysler Group sales in April 2009 were nearly 50% worse than 2008. Thus, it was inevitable when industry sales began to rise in 2010 that Chrysler would beat its poor performance in 2009. Imagine what they could do with new products to sell?

By and large the entire U.S. auto industry enjoyed positive sales last month, with (shocker!) Chrysler and Dodge posting the best performances by brand. Subaru, per usual, is right up there with a near 50% sales increase (thank you, Outback).

The number of double-digit percent increases in sales is perhaps the most telling bit of info to take away from this month's chart. Only 13 brands did not have double-digit increases, and four of those were still single-digit increases while another three are shuttered brands from General Motors. Buyers are clearly in a buying mood. At this point, which automaker gets the sale comes down to either who has the newest product or offers the most aggressive incentives.

Brand Vol. % Apr-10 Apr-09 DSR %* Apr-10 Apr-09
Chrysler 61.35 22,386 13,874 61.35 861 534
Dodge 61.18 38,795 24,070 61.18 1,492 926
Subaru 48.24 23,198 15,649 48.24 892 602
Infiniti 46.21 7,211 4,932 46.21 277 190
Volkswagen 42.03 23,135 16,289 42.03 890 627
Buick 36.44 12,181 8,928 36.44 469 343
Cadillac 35.74 11,317 8,337 35.74 435 321
Land Rover 34.56 2,749 2,043 34.56 106 79
Nissan 33.84 56,558 42,258 33.84 2,175 1,625
Audi 32.94 9,319 7,010 32.94 358.42 269.62
Hyundai 29.66 44,023 33,952 29.66 1,693 1,306
Lexus 29.33 18,359 14,195 29.33 706 546
Ford 26.08 146,589 116,263 26.08 5,638 4,472
Toyota 23.80 139,080 112,345 23.80 5,349 4,321
Lincoln 21.87 7,279 5,973 21.87 280 230
Acura 21.63 10,719 8,813 21.63 412 339
Mercedes 21.03 17,628 14,565 21.03 678 560
Mercury 19.13 9,128 7,662 19.13 351 295
GMC 18.36 24,224 20,467 18.36 932 787
Chevrolet 17.44 135,369 20,467 17.44 5,207 4,433
Mazda 17.32 18,935 16,139 17.32 728 621
Kia 17.30 30,036 25,606 17.30 1,155 985
Honda 11.67 102,978 92,216 11.67 3,961 3,547
BMW 9.95 17,268 15,705 9.95 664 604
Mini 5.09 3,843 3,657 5.09 148 141
Volvo 0.95 4,546 4,503 0.95 175 173
Mitsubishi 0.33 3,932 3,919 0.33 151 151
Jeep -0.13 19,645 19,670 -0.13 756 757
Porsche -5.72 1,747 1,853 -5.72 67 71
Ram -21.98 14,877 19,068 -21.98 572 733
Suzuki -23.32 1,950 2,543 -23.32 75 98
Jaguar -30.05 896 1,281 -30.05 34 49
(Hummer) -47.32 481 913 -47.32 19 35
Smart -49.44 680 1,345 -49.44 26 52
(Saturn) -94.94 373 7,367 -94.94 14 283
(Pontiac) -99.52 52 10,838 -99.52 2 417
Saab NA
COMPANIES
Nissan NA 35.13 63,769 47,190 35.13 2,453 1,815
Chrysler Group 24.81 95,703 76,682 24.81 3,681 2,949
Ford Mo Co
24.66 167,542 134,401 24.66 6,444 5,169
Toyota Mo Co 24.42 157,439 126,540 24.42 6,055 4,867
GM Core 19.67 183,091 152,997 19.67 7,042 5,885
Honda NA
12.54 113,697 101,029 12.54 4,373 3,886
Jag/Land Rover
9.66 3,645 3,324 9.66 140 128
BMW Group 9.03 21,111 19,362 9.03 811.96 744.69
General Motors 6.35 183,997 173,007 6.35 7,077 6,654
*Brands and companies are displayed in descending order according to their percentage change in volume sales. There were 26 selling days in April 2010 and 26selling days in April 2009, so the change in monthly sales volume will equal the change in the average daily sales rate (DSR) for each brand/company.