Best Year Since 2007, F-Series And Camry Remain Top-Sellers

Most automakers probably wish the party that was 2012 would keep right on going into 2013, because the past year was was very good for the auto industry in terms of sales. With December sales now reported, the final seasonally adjusted sales rate of the year is 15.38 million vehicles. Automotive News reports that 14.49 million light vehicles were sold in all, which is up 13 percent compared to 2011 and marks the third straight year of growth over 10 percent.

Of the major brands, Chrysler was the biggest winner with a 39.13-percent rise in sales compared to 2011, followed closely by Volkswagen with a gain of 35.06 percent. Of the big, big brands, however, Toyota led all with a rise of 27.12 percent on sales of 1,838,338 units. Honda followed with a gain of 12.69 percent on 1,266,569 sales. Both Japanese automakers can now be said to have fully recovered from both natural disasters that disrupted their production and supply lines, as well as recalls from previous years that had damaged both their brand images and reputations for sterling quality.

Perhaps it would be quicker to talk about the brands that didn't perform well, as that group is much smaller. Coming in under a red flag were Cadillac (-1.71 percent), Jaguar (-2.16 percent) and Lincoln (-4.08 percent) – all luxury brands and each missing out on reporting a sales gain by relatively small margins. At the bottom of the barrel, however, is Mitsubishi, which found itself with sales falling 28.09 percent compared to 2011. Suzuki was also down, 4.73 percent to be exact, despite some speculating the fire sale of its remaining inventory would lead to an improvement in sales for the brand, which announced it was exiting the US market back in November.

Lastly, let's go over some particular stats to give you a better picture of last year's winners.
  • Best-Selling Brand: Ford (2,168,015)
  • Best-Selling Luxury Brand: Mercedes-Benz (295,063 *includes Sprinter)
  • Best-Selling Vehicle: Ford F-Series (645,316)
  • Best-Selling Car: Toyota Camry (404,886)
  • Best-Selling CUV: Honda CR-V (281,652)
  • Best-Selling Minivan: Dodge Caravan (141,468)
  • Battle of the Pony Cars: Chevrolet Camaro (84,391, -4.4)
  • Top Five Midsize Sedans: Toyota Camry (404,886), Honda Accord (331,872), Nissan Altima (302,934), Ford Fusion (241,263), Hyundai Sonata (230,605)
  • Top Five Minivans: Dodge Caravan (141,468), Honda Odyssey (125,980), Toyota Sienna (114,725), Chrysler Town & Country (111,744), Nissan Quest (18,275)


*Brands and companies are displayed in descending order according to their percentage change in volume sales. There were 307 selling days in 2012 and 307 selling days in 2011, so there is no difference between the change in yearly sales volume and the change in average daily sales rate (DSR) for each brand/company. Also, brands are combined and reported as companies only if their sales figures are released jointly.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 104 Comments
      The Wasp
      • 1 Year Ago
      Where are Tesla and Fisker?
      British_Rover
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have been in the Auto industry since 1997 and on the sales side since 2005. From a gross dollars stand point 2012 was my best year ever. Didn't sell as many cars as 2011 but made more money overall. Prior to 2012 2006 was my best year and 2007 was my worst.
      Carlo Simongini
      • 1 Year Ago
      @basiq: for more detailed info about single brands performance and recent quarter trend, check this site: http://focus2move.com/item/384-hyundai--kia-at-record-sales-in-usa-december-sales-rose-9
      The Other Bob
      • 1 Year Ago
      Estimated 2012 Market Share: General Motors:17.91% Ford Mo Co: 15.52% Toyota Mo Co: 14.37% Chrysler Group: 11.40% American Honda: 9.82% Kia/Hyundai: 8.70% Nissan NA: 7.88% VW/Audi/Porsche: 4.23% BMW Group: 2.40% Subaru: 2.32% Mazda: 1.91% Jaguar: 0.38% Other: 3.17% TOTAL: 100.00%
      brandon
      • 1 Year Ago
      I love it. GM is still falling.
        Alfonso T. Alvarez
        • 1 Year Ago
        @brandon
        I love it - trolls are gonna be trolls no matter what the facts. Sorry, you're going to go hungry tonight ...
          brandon
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Alfonso T. Alvarez
          Pray tell, how exactly am I trolling? I hate GM, and make no bones about it. Don't steal and I won't hate you.
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
        • 1 Year Ago
        [blocked]
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
        justgoawaymad
        • 1 Year Ago
        So your saying is america likes shooting its own foot. Even after its been proven that the company has been lieing for years to get there ratings. Typical americans. blind fat and stupid. Go back to your dancing with stars nothing to see here.
          A P
          • 1 Year Ago
          @justgoawaymad
          If you want to see fat assed people, go to Germany...they are fatter than Americans.....
          NightFlight
          • 1 Year Ago
          @justgoawaymad
          A lot of fat Americans are upset that we are the fattest. Is that why I am being downvoted? Don't give up on your resolution to lose 50 pounds by summer!
        wayoflife73
        • 1 Year Ago
        Gee Toyota said it, so it must be true ;)
          • 1 Year Ago
          @bizz1441
          [blocked]
          RamSport
          • 1 Year Ago
          @bizz1441
          so... Toyota says Toyota is #1? Trustworthy source!
        • 1 Year Ago
        [blocked]
          Spies1
          • 1 Year Ago
          So that explains BlackDynamit's crazy rating. yomama6500, yomama6501, yomama6502, yomama6503, yomama6504.....showed up.
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
      Govis
      • 1 Year Ago
      Something severely wrong with GM and Ford underperforming the market like that. The gilding is coming off the lily for Ford and Mullaly....
        Randy
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Govis
        I don't think your assessment was made with all the information you needed to make it. Many of the top increases come from companies that where either A: recovering for uncertainty about their brands (Chrysler / Dodge / Ram w/ Fiat purchasing) and B: Japanese imports recovering from a mix of events, namely a massive tsunami and nuclear disaster and epic number of recalls. Ford and Mullaly are doing quite well considering that FoMoCo had double digit growth during the times that GM, Honda, Toyo and many others were losing market share. Given that Ford is still gaining growth, I believe it's a testament to the companies success as well as their strong portfolio of high quality, top rated efficiencies (MPGs & MPGEs) and visually appealing vehicles. GM is also still gaining but compared to Ford, GM has a lot of catching up to do. Back to Ford; I think this is THE company to watch. They are perfectly positioned to gain market globally and they are now one of the most, if not THE most efficiently run major full line car company on the planet. 2013 is the year that Ford probably takes the #1 spot globally, maybe 2014 but soon! Heck, Ford as a brand is the #1 selling car brand. Look at the numbers..... Anyway, this is my perception, I'm sure there are others but I think it's pretty good.... Be well....
          Robert Ryan
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Randy
          It's performance outside NA is not so rosy. North American Pickups account for 90% of Ford's Global profits. The same can be said of GM.
        merlot066
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Govis
        Ford was already the best selling brand in 2011 and have been the only brand to sell 2 million vehicles for the past year. They are also ending production of major vehicles like the Ranger, Crown Vic, and Town Car while only adding the C-Max this year. While I'm more unhappy with Mulally's handling of Lincoln by the day his continued work with the Ford brand has been excellent.
      Smilez1105
      • 1 Year Ago
      I just wish someone would mention fleet sales. No one on here ever talks about fleet sales. If there was just one DB, or some variation of those letters to tell me about fleet sales and how ONLY American brands have fleet sales. Oh how I wish.
        Jeremy Pennini
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Smilez1105
        Have you rented a car recently? There are plenty of foreign brands deep in fleet (Hyundai\Kia I'm looking at you)
          NightFlight
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          Nissan has a higher fleet mix than Hyundai or Kia do. The Altima has one of the highest fleet ratios for D segment sedans when you don't include the Galant or the Sebring/Avenger.
          merlot066
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          Don't forget about Mazda to. There's no way to explain almost 70% fleet sales on the Mazda 6.
          NightFlight
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          @ merlot066 It isn't even remotely close to 70%.
          zoom_zoom_zoom
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          It's common knowledge the Mazda 6 is around 68% fleet sales, and by far the highest in it's segment.
          NightFlight
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          @ zoom_zoom_zoom Waiting for your source.
          Smilez1105
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          It was sarcasm Jeremy.
          The Wasp
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          It was fail Jeremy.
          merlot066
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Jeremy Pennini
          Thanks for the attitude but here you go... http://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/blog/2012/08/countdown-midsized-cars-ranked-by.html?s=image_gallery
      justgoawaymad
      • 1 Year Ago
      battle of the pony cars camaro and mustang. HEY autoblog EVER here of challenger?????? always an agenda never the full facts.
        Jeremy Pennini
        • 1 Year Ago
        @justgoawaymad
        I'll give you the short answer on the Challenger. It lost.
        A P
        • 1 Year Ago
        @justgoawaymad
        Hey, its AB....do you really expect the full story?
        onewayroll
        • 1 Year Ago
        @justgoawaymad
        Agreed...I would be nice to see how it's doing...good or bad.
        montoym
        • 1 Year Ago
        @justgoawaymad
        The Challenger sold 43,119 last year. That's an increase of about 9% over 2011 (39,534). In either case, roughly half of what the Camaro and Mustang sell each year.
      Tina Dang
      • 1 Year Ago
      Congrats MB!
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Tina Dang
        [blocked]
          Tourian
          • 1 Year Ago
          GM outsold all luxury car makes. They should be able to add Buick and Cadillac sales together to compare to what M-B, BMW and Lex did in this country. 330,190 without any FedEx delivery trucks added in. Beat that.
        Maddoxx
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Tina Dang
        Mercedes, the most plain jane of all Luxury makes. Your Xmen interiors are awful. You're never first place in performance, luxury, or value. You're like the popular fat girl, you'd be desirable if you lost 30 lbs.
          NightFlight
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Maddoxx
          Don't be jealous because you are rolling around in a 2006 Aveo.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Tina Dang
        [blocked]
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