The month-to-month increases in Chevrolet Volt sales for the last few months have not been all that impressive – from August to September, they went up just 20 units, and from September to October, the number climbed up 110. The good new for GM, though, is that each of the last three months have set new records. October continued that trend, with 2,961 Volts sold last month. Based on these trends, will anyone be surprised if the Volt finally breaks 3,000 for the first time in November?

Before Nissan released sales numbers today, we heard from our friend Paul Scott that October would be a record month for the Leaf, as well. Well, Nissan's best month ever for Leaf sales was all the way back in June 2011, when 1,708 Leafs were sold. October didn't quite hit that lofty high, but Scott was on to something. In October, Nissan sold 1,579 units, the second-ever best month for US sales. It's also something of a spectacular turnaround for the Leaf, which has been running in the three-digit sales figures since all the way back in November 2011.

We'll have our monthly write-up of US alt-fuel vehicle sales, including numbers for all the plug-in and hybrid vehicles, available soon.
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Nissan North America Announces October Sales

FRANKLIN, Tenn. – Nissan North America, Inc. (NNA) today reported October U.S. sales of 79,685 units versus 82,346 units a year earlier, down 3.2 percent. Nissan Division sales decreased 6.0 percent for the month at 70,928 units. Sales of Infiniti vehicles were up 27.6 percent over the prior year, to 8,757 units.

NISSAN HIGHLIGHTS
  • Nissan Division posted sales of 70,928 units, down 6.0 percent from last October's 75,484 units.
  • Sales of the all-new, 2013 Altima increased 12.8 percent to 24,623 units. The all-new Altima debuted this summer. Calendar year-to-date Altima sales now stand up 16.3 percent year-over year.
  • The Nissan LEAF all-electric vehicle recorded strong sales of 1,579 units in October, up 86 percent from the prior year.
  • Sales of the Pathfinder SUV rose 46.9 percent over the prior year, with sales of 3,043 units. The next-generation Pathfinder will debut later this month.
"Unfortunately, October ended on a down note with Hurricane Sandy causing major disruption throughout the Northeast, which is our strongest performing region with more than 225 area dealers. To lend a helping hand to those affected, Nissan is offering both employee discounts and employee financing to eligible residents in FEMA disaster areas," said Al Castignetti, vice president, Nissan Division. More information on the program is available at www.insidenissan.com.

INFINITI HIGHLIGHTS
  • Infiniti today reported sales of 8,757 units for October, an increase of 27.6 percent from 6,862 units a year earlier.
  • With 1,467 deliveries, the Infiniti QX was up 17.9 percent, making it the best October in history for the full-size luxury SUV.
  • The Infiniti FX line, now available with a new 325-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6 engine, was up 18.5 percent to 783 units.
  • Infiniti's all-new JX 7-passenger luxury crossover continued its successful launch with 2,084 units sold.
  • The 2013 Infiniti M line, supported by newly available all-wheel drive sport packages for both the M37 and M56 models, had sales of 738, up 11.1 percent in October.
  • Overall, with its luxury crossovers and SUVs showing sales increases of 93 percent in October, Infiniti was up 27.6 percent in October, its sixth straight month of double-digit sales increases.
Infiniti also announced today it will offer employee pricing and special financing with deferred payments to people in the designated FEMA disaster area who lost vehicles to Hurricane Sandy. "We hope Infiniti's special pricing and financing programs help people affected by this devastating storm to resume their normal lives," said Ben Poore, vice president, Infiniti Americas.

NOTE: To ensure consistency in global sales reporting, Nissan North America calculates monthly variances on a straight-percentage basis, unadjusted for the number of selling days. October had 26 selling days both in 2012 and 2011.

About Nissan North America
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program and has been recognized as an ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year in 2010, 2011, and 2012 by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency. More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at www.NissanUSA.com and www.InfinitiUSA.com, or visit the Americas media sites NissanNews.com and InfinitiNews.com.

About Nissan
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Japan's second-largest automotive company, is headquartered in Yokohama, Japan, and is part of the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Operating with more than 248,000 employees globally, Nissan provided customers with more than 4.8 million vehicles in 2011, generating revenue of 9.4 trillion yen ($118.95 billion US). With a strong commitment to developing exciting and innovative products for all, Nissan delivers a comprehensive range of 64 models under the Nissan and Infiniti brands. A pioneer in zero-emission mobility, Nissan made history with the introduction of the Nissan LEAF, the first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and winner of numerous international accolades, including the prestigious 2011-2012 Car of the Year Japan and 2011 World Car of the Year awards.

For more information on our products, services and commitment to sustainable mobility, visit our website at http://www.nissan-global.com/EN/.


GM U.S. Sales Increase 5 percent in October
Retail sales up 7 percent, fleet down 2 percent

2012-11-01

DETROIT – General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) today reported its highest October sales in the United States since 2007, with deliveries up 5 percent versus a year ago to 195,764 vehicles. Year-over-year sales to retail customers were up 7 percent and sales to fleet customers were down 2 percent.

"GM had a solid October in a month that was marked by a devastating national tragedy," said Kurt McNeil, vice president, U.S. sales operations. "All of us at GM are deeply saddened by the loss of life and the extensive damage caused by the storms, but we're really encouraged by the national and local response, which will speed the recovery."

GM's new cars had a standout performance in October.

"With new designs like the Chevrolet Spark, Buick Verano and Cadillac ATS, and a growing reputation for quality and good resale value, we are becoming an even more formidable competitor in every segment – not just traditional GM strongholds like trucks," McNeil said.

Sales of GM passenger cars increased 15 percent in October compared with a year ago. Crossovers were up 3 percent and sales of full-size pickup trucks were up 8 percent.
  • Passenger car sales were driven by a 37 percent increase in Cadillac car sales, a 27 percent increase in Buick car sales and a 12 percent increase in Chevrolet car sales.
  • Combined sales of mini, small and compact cars were up 72 percent compared with a year ago, driven by strong Spark and Sonic sales and a 34 percent increase in Cruze sales. Chevrolet dealers also delivered a record 2,961 Volts.
  • Crossover sales were driven by double-digit increases for the Cadillac SRX, GMC Acadia and GMC Terrain.
  • Overall truck sales were down 2 percent, reflecting lower sales of the GMC and Chevrolet mid-size pickups, which have been discontinued, and large SUVs.
"Year over year, the light vehicle selling rate has increased for eight consecutive quarters without a tailwind from the residential housing sector, but that is starting to change," said McNeil. "If these trends continue, housing may be the final piece of the puzzle that lifts sales above 15 million units on an annual basis just as GM prepares to launch even more new cars, crossovers and trucks."

GM will replace 70 percent of its U.S. nameplates with redesigned or all-new vehicles over the course of 2012 - 2013. In anticipation of robust demand, GM has increased its year-end inventory target from the 650,000-unit range to 660,000 to 670,000 units. This change reflects higher planned stocks of new passenger cars. The truck inventory target is unchanged.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 101 Comments
      Grendal
      • 2 Years Ago
      Still looking good. The Volt is leading the plug-in pack. The Leaf saw a nice jump in sales by following GM's leasing strategy on the Volt. It won't be counted because Tesla only gives out quarterly numbers but they delivered about 500 and took reservations for (sold) about 1500. This is a very exciting time for alternative energy cars and it's only going to be getting better.
      SVX pearlie
      • 1 Day Ago
      @Spec: "plug-in hybrids can save A LOT of gas" Exactly so. If every car traveled its first 10 miles on battery, we would probably cut gas consumption by 30-40%.
      MTN RANGER
      • 2 Years Ago
      Pretty amazing since the factory has been on hold for the 2014 Impala setup from Sept 17 - Oct 15. November will be less due to most dealer stock is very low. December sales will be amazing like last year mostly due to the end of year tax deadline. I expect at least 4000.
        SVX pearlie
        • 1 Day Ago
        @MTN RANGER
        @RANGER: "I expect at least 4000." If GM marketing is done right, 5000 (or more) is possible, but GM will need to have product on hand. I'd hate to think GM would lose sales due to lack of product to sell.
          SVX pearlie
          • 1 Day Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          In 3 years, GM will have a new Volt, Caddy ELR, Buick Ampera/Electra, and some sort of GMC wagon. All running on 2nd Gen Voltec platform using heavily-amortized technology. It's in GM's best interest to get their 200k sold as soon as possible, and then to reshuffle the credits from a per-OEM basis to one with a grand total cap, to an upfront rebate for vehicles sold in a particular calendar year. GM will argue that most won't OEMs haven't bothered to take advantage of their credits, so a fundamental change is needed to spur plug-in adoption. Classic "move the goalposts, once you're ahead".
          Spec
          • 1 Day Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          The tax-credit could also be extended.
          Dave
          • 1 Day Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          I wonder if GM wants to sell 5000 per month. 5000 per month is 60,000 per year. The tax credit begins to phase out at 200,000 units per manufacturer. So, in 3 years, the tax credit will begin to phase out for GM and GM will have to compete with OEMs who are nowhere near the phaseout. Of course, the tax credit could be eliminated if the political winds shift direction.
      SVX pearlie
      • 2 Years Ago
      Chevy Volt has now notched 3 months of 2,850+ each, and was less than 50 cars from breaking the 3k number. That's really, really solid performance for an all-new car with a $40k MSRP. Kudos! The Leaf had a very good month, but still has a long way to go to regain marketshare and mindshare. And their numbers are all over the map - hard to see where their numbers will go, whether this will sustain or not (their record 1708 was followed by big drop down to 931). In other news, Honda sold 16 Fit EV, another record month! (16 last month) The Volt and Leaf are probably benefitting strongly from the Federal rebate, as we close in on the time that people can file and get their money back. Each month, the buyer carries that $7500 Federal rebate for one fewer month. Looking forward, the Volt should easily see 3,000+ in November, with a very strong possibility of 4,000+ in December, for a total of 26,000+ cars sold CY2012. This time next week, I wouldn't be surprised if GM announces a record 20,000 total Volt sold year-to-date.
        raktmn
        • 2 Years Ago
        @SVX pearlie
        The timing of the federal rebate will boost outright purchases, but it won't matter at all for leases. I thought most Volts and Leafs were being leased, and very few were being sold outright. Did that change this month?
          SVX pearlie
          • 1 Day Ago
          @raktmn
          @raktm: It's pretty clear that lessors are factoring the tax rebates, which is why the Leaf and Volt leases are so attractive compared to other cars of the same MSRP. As leasing is a business that inherently manages cash and time value of money, it's reasonable to assume they factor the tax rebate float. Current interest rates are pretty low, around 3-4%. If someone buys in January, it's about a 1 year float, which translates into something like $225-$300 upfront. All companies consider interest factors based on their cash flow, and I'm sure their accountants factor this into whatever lease they offer to people. Normally, there won't be a tax credit to offset lease costs. Fiscal Year will vary by company, and some may choose to align with Calendar Year (it's not guaranteed).
          raktmn
          • 1 Day Ago
          @raktmn
          Are the lease companies running with that and discounting leases more from their side of the deal? Because if the lease companies aren't passing that time value of money on to their customers, then it can't explain more customers choosing to buy now. This can't work as an incentive to people leasing more cars unless there is a price cut between the lease companies and the customers leasing cars. The other problem is that I doubt that lease companies pay their full 2012 taxes in April 2013 like regular wage earners and small businesses. They are big enough that they are likely paying quarterly estimated taxes, so the time value of money for them is completely different than for typical car buyers. I agree that the $7500 creates lots of new twists in the whole car buying/leasing thing. It certainly has some impact. I'm just not 100% convinced it is big enough to justify boosting the numbers for October. Last year that really didn't come into play until December, plus a little bit in November. I think the October demand at least for Volts is purely buyer desire driven, not driven by the GM $2,500 incentive like August/early Sept. or by the timing of the $7,500 federal credit. This is just pure demand of people buying a car because they really want to buy it. Nothing else seems to explain it.
          raktmn
          • 1 Day Ago
          @raktmn
          It isn't a question of fiscal year vs. calender year. Most large companies have to do quarterly estimates along with quarterly tax payments if they will owe taxes at the end of the year. The year end tax filings is more like a wrap-up of all the quarterly estimates than a single yearly filing. If they are filing quarterly estimates, they will be reducing their quarterly tax payments, and they won't have to wait a full year. They will wait 0-3 months no matter what time of the year it is.
          SVX pearlie
          • 1 Day Ago
          @raktmn
          It'll impact leases to a lesser extent - even a leasing company has to manage cash flow. A big bunch of Volt / Leaf leases early in the year creates a big cash hole at a time that overall sales are down, so the don't get as much fees. Don't think that lessors don't understand the time value of money.
        Spec
        • 2 Years Ago
        @SVX pearlie
        I was honestly worried that the bump in Volt sales was just a temporary spike from selling off the 2012 models at a discount. Nope, it appears there is a sustained increase in sales and that is great. The car deserves it.
          Ford Future
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          The prediction markets say this should be an Obama landslide. But, Romney's company own's the voting machines. We're already seeing ILLEGAL voting machine updates in Ohio. Will we see rampant fraud in OHIO? Where's the FBI?
          throwback
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          Could be folks anticipate a Romney win and figure now is the time to jump in while the credit is available. If Romney does win I would expect Nov and Dec to be record sales months.
          SVX pearlie
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          I was thinking August was a spike as well, but September and October are really pushing things forward. 3 months, and it's clear that the game has changed dramatically. Right now, I am estimating 3,000+ Nov & 4,000+ Dec. But those are somewhat "safe" - we could see jumps to 3,300+ & 5,000+ the next couple of months if GM does a good job with the financing and tax rebate marketing. If you look at Hamtramck, GM only built 1710 Volt (and 2 Ampera) as they ramped up Malibu production. Considering Christmas Holiday and Thanksgiving breaks, it looks like GM will need to run the Volt line full-bore for the rest of the year just to maintain US inventory levels.
          SVX pearlie
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          @throwback - I never considered a political angle with Romney winning. Fortunately, we'll have that answer a week from now, giving GM 8 weeks to build and sell rebate-qualified cars to the end of the year. Inauguration is Jan 20, so that would be another 3 weeks to sell cars. GM probably has 5,000 cars on lot, and can build 11,000+ cars, so that'd be 16k Volt to clear out before the new administration?
      Nicholas (Kompulsa)
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hello. I would not have created that picture. They are two different types of cars that serve two different purposes. One is low cost, high efficiency, very short-range electric-only driving (Leaf), the other is very long range, but more expensive and uses gas as well. The Chevy Volt is an extended range vehicle for people that need long range, and the Leaf is a cheaper alternative which you cannot fill with gas, so you have to plug it in. Many people need to make an effort to contrast between the two.
      Nicholas (Kompulsa)
      • 2 Years Ago
      I forgot that electric cars have plenty of backup power for outages due to their large batteries.
        SVX pearlie
        • 1 Day Ago
        @Nicholas (Kompulsa)
        An EV can provide a lot of power, but it discharges like any other battery. If you have no juice, no only are you in the dark, you no longer have the ability to drive away.
      • 2 Years Ago
      After reading multiple articles about new lower prices for the Leaf I went on the nissan.ca website to price one here in Canada and it's over $600/month for a 48 month lease and over $700 for a shorter lease! Where are those sub $300 prices I keep hearing about? Why are they giving away the Leaf in California?
        Smith Jim
        • 1 Day Ago
        A friend of mine just signed a lease on a Leaf. No money down, 24 months, 24,000 miles at $238 per month and the first month is free. We live in St. Louis, Missouri USA.
        Spec
        • 1 Day Ago
        The number of them available in Canada is probably pretty limited at this point so they have bargaining power. When the USA plant opens, that should change.
          Dave D
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          Daaaannngggg, Ziv is right! They've amassed most of their population along our border which is one of the clearest signs of aggression you could have! We need to roll those tanks now and keep right on going until we liberate the tar sands! Have you ever wondered how they managed to sell us Alaska, yet held onto all the surrounding areas with the tar sands? That was some serious forward thinking Canada...well played. raktman, One of my employees is a "Canadian" and he puts those blade thingy's on his feet at least once a week and comes back with all kinds of bruises and stuff the next day. We're fairly certain that he's a plant who is down here training insurgents....how else could you explain all those bruises! And yet, he pretends to be a simple SQL DBA. But we're on to him and his beer drinking ways.
          Spec
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          Well they should know we are coming. They now have all that oil from the tar sands, so it was only a matter of time before the tanks started rolling.
          MTN RANGER
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          That and the strategic maple syrup reserve.
          raktmn
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          I heard that Canadians wear funny hats they call "Tukes". Are those like a turban or something? We better invade and make sure they aren't hiding terrorists under those tuke thingies. I heard they all carry around blades on their feet too, something about ice, or icing people. Is that some kind of weapon they are trying to sneak across the border? Maybe it some kind of mind control device, because they all start fighting when they wear them. I'm gonna ask my crazy uncle if he knows anything about all this. He listens to the radio a lot, so I'm sure he can tell me whether all this is true or not. Either way, we should invade just to be sure.
          Ziv
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          I thought you were blowing smoke, Dave, and then I realized that Canada has massed 90% of their population within 100 miles of their southern border with us. If that doesn't give us a clear casus belli, what does? We better take it to them before they come storming across a border we have trustingly left nearly completely undefended. ;-)
          Dave D
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Spec
          Spec, you forgot to mention that we're also doing things like this trying to soften up the Canadian economy to prepare them for the invasion we have planned for next spring. We would come in now, but it's kinda cold. Could you guys work on that? Nothing personal guys, but things are going kinda sh@tty down here right now and we Americans know there's nothing like invading another country to take our mind off our problems. :-)
      • 2 Years Ago
      I pray that Romney does not win the election and if he does, that he keeps the green car tax incentive in place. He has vowed to nix the credit which would effectively hamper progress in clean/green automobiles. I plan on buying one in April when I return from deployment. (fingers crossed)
      DaveMart
      • 2 Years Ago
      Reliability should be a good sales point for almost all hybrid and electric cars: 'Hybrid vehicles, and those powered by electricity in one form or another, have good predicted reliability in the Consumer Reports 2012 Annual Auto Reliability Survey. The survey predicts the reliability of 2013 models based on tracking of the reliability of vehicles up to 10 years old. This year’s analysis is based on data from 1.2 million 2003-12 model-year vehicles leased or owned by Consumer Reports subscribers. Magazine editors noted that reliability is a high point this year for all hybrids but the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid. It was the only one that had a worse-than-average rating for predicted reliability. The Toyota Prius, the Prius V (the larger hatchback Prius) and the new Prius Plug-in were all above average in predicted reliability. The Chevrolet Volt, a plug-in hybrid, also has above-average predicted reliability. The all-electric Nissan Leaf has above-average predicted reliability, and the editors said it was the Nissan model with the best predicted reliability.' http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/10/29/hybrids-and-electric-vehicles-do-well-in-reliability-survey/
        Spec
        • 1 Day Ago
        @DaveMart
        Well . . . there is one hot (literally) plug-in car that that has not been too reliable as CR well knows. ;-) (They are so toast.)
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      Throw in the Plug-In Prius sales and we should be easily over 5000/month in plug-in sales. And that is not even counting Leafs, Mitsubishi-is, Tesla Model S cars, remaining discounted Think City cars, Ford Focus Electrics, Codas, etc. Those won't add up to much but the do add to the total. Nice rebound by the Leaf . . . they must have been heavily discounting them in anticipation of the US built model. The Volt truly remains the star of the plug-in world. Way to go GM. We look forward to the Voltec powered Caddy and the pure EV Spark.
        SVX pearlie
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Spec
        No data on the PIP, but if it's like last month (1650+), total plug-in will break 6k. If Toyota did well, I don't think we'll need the 100-odd MIEV or FFE sales to break 6k for the month.
        MTN RANGER
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Spec
        Other than the Volt and Leaf, the rest are small potatoes (500 units or so total): Model S ~250, Karma 75-100, RAV4EV ~100, FocusEV ~50, i ~30, FitEV 16, Coda ~15
          Ford Future
          • 1 Day Ago
          @MTN RANGER
          The RAV4EV and the Fit EV should have been planned for better sales. They could have been a competitor.
      Actionable Mango
      • 2 Years Ago
      So tired of the Leaf vs. Volt picture. It's not a 2-car competition and this particular matchup never made sense anyway.
        Jesse Gurr
        • 1 Day Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        Do you think next year they will change the picture to the Fusion Energi/Volt? That would be a better match up. I don't know about Leaf though. What other car would you put there? Focus Electric, Fit electric, Coda, Rav4 EV? So many cars to choose from now. :D
        Spec
        • 1 Day Ago
        @Actionable Mango
        Meh. They are the two biggest selling plug-in vehicles and the competition between PHEV and pure EV has been interesting. (There is a market niche for both but it is interesting to see which does better.)
      • 2 Years Ago
      The real news here is that despite all the naysayers, it looks like we have a plug in car industry! Nothing can stop us now!
        Spec
        • 1 Day Ago
        Indeed. I was always a bit worried about the over-optimistic sales projections. But I think things are moving enough now such that they are not going to shut it down like they did in the late 1990's. It is still hard to justify expensive pure EVs, but plug-in hybrids can save A LOT of gas despite having relatively small batteries if you plug them in as much as possible. At the very minimum you plug it in at night and get 10 to 50 miles on electricity every day depending on the model.
        Ford Future
        • 1 Day Ago
        Romney can.
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