Last year was a Leap Year, and February 2012 indeed offered automakers an extra day of selling cars compared to the 24 trips around the sun we took last month. Nevertheless, the US auto industry took full advantage of the days they were given and posted a solid month of sales in February 2013.
Among major automakers, Ford Motor Company (+9.33 percent) and General Motors (+7.17 percent) were the leaders, while Toyota Motor Company (+4.34) and Chrysler Group (+4.11 thanks to a +30.33-percent performance by Dodge) managed to stay positive. Nissan North America, however, fared less well, reporting a drop in year-over-year sales of -6.65 percent.
Among brands, we see many luxury marques near the top, including Bentley (+42.86 percent), Porsche (+30.53 percent), Audi (+27.77 percent), Mercedes-Benz (+23.05 percent), Cadillac (+20.34 percent) and Land Rover (+19.97 percent). If taken as a sign of a recovering economy, then the wealthier among us appear to be leading the way.
Perhaps more notable are the brands that didn't do so well in February. Kia (-7.84 percent) has rarely been seen in the red, and even trumpeted a new sales record for January last month. The rare dip is unusual for the Korean automaker, having increased sales four years in a row and experiencing only one month of declining sales last year in December. Likewise, Jeep (-16.48 percent) and Nissan (-7.18 percent) manage to avoid the crimson club most months, but not last month.
You might not be surprised to see Lincoln at the very bottom of the sales pile.
You might not be surprised to see Lincoln at the very bottom of the sales performance pile, having reported a large decline of -29.35 percent. Don't blame the new MKZ just yet, as production has still not yet ramped up to the levels of its predecessor. Lincoln sold 945 new MKZs in February, down 62.0 percent from the year prior, but up 47.9 percent month-over-month.
UPDATE: Honda inadvertently published incorrect numbers earlier in the day. Those numbers have now been updated reflecting the accurate sales data for Honda, Acura and Honda America.
UPDATE 2: Numbers corrected for Volkswagen, Infiniti and Acura.
*Brands and companies are displayed in descending order according to their percentage change in volume sales. There were 24 selling days in February 2013 and 25 selling days in February 2012, so there is a difference between the change in monthly 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.