It's official, folks: 2015 was a record year for automobile sales in the United States. More than 17.4 million brand-new vehicles were sold over the course of the year, narrowly putting 2015 ahead of the previous record, which was set in 2000.

As has been the case all year, the December's sales figures were driven by crossovers, trucks and SUVs. This being the case, it's no surprise to see Jeep and Land Rover hovering near the top of the rankings. The biggest gainer of all was Volvo, which saw a 90-percent boost in sales due to the strong performance of its XC60 and XC90 crossovers.

In addition to trucks, luxury brands had particularly strong Decembers. Bentley, a small-volume automaker, posted a 41-percent gain last month, followed by Cadillac and Infiniti. The race to be the number-one luxury marque in the United States in 2015 has been close all year, with Lexus coming on strong in the fourth quarter to earn a narrow victory over Mercedes-Benz, but it was BMW that finally came in first place with 346,023 total sales last year.

A few more noteworthy data points:

  • Fiat Chrysler's 12-percent gain marks the 69th consecutive month of sales increases for the automaker.
  • Subaru managed its 49th consecutive month of increased sales. The brand's tally of 582,675 vehicles sold represents the seventh year in a row that it has set a new sales record.
  • There were 28 selling days in December of 2015, which is two greater than the same month a year ago.

We'll follow up tomorrow with a recap of the entire year in auto sales, but until then, have a gander at the full chart below for the month of December. As always, you're encouraged to peruse our past By The Numbers posts for all the sales data from previous months and years.


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