It doesn't really have a name, but the meteorological events in January that caused record-breaking low temperatures across most of the Midwestern United States and Canada is being blamed for many automakers' sales woes last month. The dangerous temperatures, which were colder even than what the North and South Pole were experiencing at the time, kept potential buyers bundled up indoors rather than walking the floors of dealerships shopping for new cars and trucks.

Worst hit were the industry's largest automakers that deal in the highest volumes of sales. American Honda, for instance, reported sales in January that were down 2.13 percent to 91,631 units. Likewise, Ford Motor Company was down 7.12 percent, Toyota Motor Sales down 7.20 percent, and General Motors, the largest automaker by volume, was down 11.92 percent, selling 23,213 fewer vehicles than January of last year.

While those major auto companies were down as a whole, many luxury brands bucked the trend by reporting positive sales. Lincoln sales were up 42.52 percent thanks to the MKZ, while Jaguar reported a 30.9-percent increase, Infiniti was up 26.27 percent and Acura sales rose 14.06 percent.

Of the major brands, Jeep stood out as a bright spot, reporting an increase of 30.9 percent on a strong month of sales for the new Cherokee. Ram also did well for itself, recording a sales increase of 24.04 percent, and the unstoppable Subaru kept improving with an increase of 19.29 percent, thanks in large part to two of its models best suited for winter warfare: the Forester and XV Crosstrek. Maserati enjoyed the best month-over-month increase thanks to its new Quattroporte and Ghibli sedans, up a stratospheric 229.6 percent.

The rest of the numbers are below, and you can view more from the past in our By the Numbers archive.



*Brands and companies are displayed in descending order according to their percentage change in volume sales. There were 25 selling days in January 2014 and 25 selling days in January 2013, so there is no 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.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 60 Comments
      Zoom
      • 1 Year Ago
      Considering Mazda has two brand new products out it's shocking that sales fell.
        Essende
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Zoom
        Just another example of how good marketing/advertising campaign matters more than the actual quality of the product...
          strykerzzzz
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Essende
          I see tons of Mazda ads out. Mazda's sales problem is that they hardly discount their cars anymore.
      cpmanx
      • 1 Year Ago
      A few interesting patterns here (besides Mercedes outselling VW): Nissan outsold Honda in January Hyundai/Kia broke out of an extended slump Jaguar/Land Rover outsold Lincoln for the month The Jeep Cherokee sold more than 10,000 units again--outselling the entire Audi lineup and, more relevant, outselling the Wrangler again GM and Ford sales were allegedly depressed in part by delays in fleet deliveries due to the weather. Both companies had a much bigger drop in fleet than retail sales in Jan; if sales really were just deferred a month, there should be notable sales upticks next month.
      1STH
      • 1 Year Ago
      LOL @ Cadillac and their ugly ass lineup. Lincoln is going to come back and destroy you one day!!
        adam1keith1980
        • 1 Year Ago
        @1STH
        Lincoln's baseline is pretty low. It better goes up from there.
        express2day
        • 1 Year Ago
        @1STH
        Lincoln had an exceptional month because it was compared against January '13 when there was an MKZ inventory shortage. However, Lincoln should have an excellent year this year as the MKZ continues to be a strong seller and they add the MKC to the lineup mid-year.
        knightrider_6
        • 1 Year Ago
        @1STH
        and pigs will fly
      adam1keith1980
      • 1 Year Ago
      Wow...all the GM brands are in the negative. This is strange, because according to the fanboys, GM products are the best and anyone that buys anything else are uneducated about cars.
        1STH
        • 1 Year Ago
        @adam1keith1980
        GM sucks. it wouldn't surprise me if they hire fanboys to sign up here and leave comments.
      ferps
      • 1 Year Ago
      With the way things are going at VW, nobody is going to get a pair of wings anytime soon.
        RocketRed
        • 1 Year Ago
        @ferps
        They just sacked their head of US sales, who followed the CEO out. I hope the next set of management refuses to take the job unless there is some U.S.-relevant product in the piplene, that is, primarily, CUVs. They only have two U.S.-relevant mass market cars now, Jetta and Passat, and they are already dated with not even a refresh in the works as far as I can tell. The CrossBlue is not even supposed to be out until 2016 and there is nothing else on deck. VW needs to get serious about the U.S. Doing a couple mid-size sedans and dusting off one's hands is not being serious.
        cpmanx
        • 1 Year Ago
        @ferps
        VW was outsold in January by Mercedes. That's got to be triggering a lot of wounded egos and grumpy management discussions.
        N.O.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @ferps
        Marching orders are much more likely.
      knightrider_6
      • 1 Year Ago
      Infiniti up by 27%. But... but... Their confusing model numbers were going to hurt the sales
        Feurig
        • 1 Year Ago
        @knightrider_6
        Yes, that's interesting. I don't recall Infiniti coming out with any new models until the summer, however (new models will always spur some growth). It's also possible that they reduced the potential sales through the name change.
          knightrider_6
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Feurig
          The only single new model that Infiniti released last year is Q50/Q60 (formerly G Sedan and G Coupe)
      x19x19
      • 1 Year Ago
      Wow, Fiat with two mediocre offerings outsold all of MIni. I would be in panic mode if I were BMW, especially with an ugly 3rd generation about to be introduced.
        gtv4rudy
        • 1 Year Ago
        @x19x19
        Mini is an overpriced lemon. The little 500 is at least affordable.
        Dvanos
        • 1 Year Ago
        @x19x19
        Customers are probably waiting for the new Cooper and dont want an older model. No reason to panic.
        GILFsRock
        • 1 Year Ago
        @x19x19
        The base 500 Pop model can be had for around 3500 off MSRP. The 500L can be had with discounts in the 4-5K range. According to a member at the Fiat 500 forums, some Fiat dealers are discounting a WHOPPING 8-9K off the Abarth models. As far as I know, Mini discounts are extremely rare.
        Merc1
        • 1 Year Ago
        @x19x19
        There is nothing to panic about, secondly they're going thru a model switch over with their main car. Why do you guys put so much stock and gloom and doom in 1 month of sales? The slowest month at that? No clue how sales work seems to be the dominant theme on this site. M
      knightrider_6
      • 1 Year Ago
      Kia sold more than 3 times as many cars as Audi.
        Awhattup
        • 1 Year Ago
        @knightrider_6
        Yea Audi sells more than Bentley though.
        Antonio
        • 1 Year Ago
        @knightrider_6
        ummm. KIA is a competitor to Mitsubushi and Suzuki, hoping one day to be able to compete with a VW.
          axiomatik
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Antonio
          Indeed, Audi's cars are quite a bit more expensive than Kia's, so naturally, more people will be able to afford a Kia. However, in the US, Kia is obviously out-competing VW.
      mic414
      • 1 Year Ago
      Jeep is going to have a banner year. I liked the Cherokee when it was launched for it bold design, but I wasn't sure if it's going to be a success commercially. But I've seen a couple of Cherokees on the road since... they look awesome in real life, they have a unique but not over to top presence that will win a lot of customers. I was driving down the freeway today, 4 lanes of cars coming on the other side, and the Cherokee popped out of the crowd like few other cars/SUVs do, especially in its price range.
      Jesus!
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ha you know I said it last month and I will say it again....where are those Lincoln naysayers now? Uh huh. Interested to see the numbers once the MK whatever they are calling it comes out.
        freddie
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Jesus!
        calm down buddy, lincoln sold less then 6 thousand cars wait till other car makers roll out there new models
          cpmanx
          • 1 Year Ago
          @freddie
          The 2013 numbers were unusually low because of the delay in getting the MKZ to dealers. The 2014 percentage change looks especially good because of the easy comparison. That said, the MKZ is shaping up as a modest hit now that dealers have adequate supplies...and based on early reaction to the MKC, it will very likely produce a major jump in Lincoln sales numbers later in the year.
        merlot066
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Jesus!
        Sorry Jesus, people will continue to deny Lincoln's turnaround even after 6-8 solid months of sales gains and the inevitable sales they will gain with the hugely anticipated MKC and the new Navigator which I predict to be good for a decent 15-20% bump in sales.
      sapworks
      • 1 Year Ago
      So wintertime, which never came before, was the reason more cars did not sell. Fair enough, sales will be twice as high for February, then, to make up for it. If only someone had bothered to tell Jeep, Mercedes, and Subaru that it was wintertime, they would have been spared the embarassment of posting great numbers.
      mitytitywhitey
      • 1 Year Ago
      RAM keeps gaining market share in pickups. Silverado somehow keeps losing market share.
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