There were about three million fewer cars sold in 2008 than 2007. Based on 2007's numbers, it would be the same as if Acura, Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Lexus, MINI, Porsche, and Saab all closed their doors in 2008. In terms of pure automotive carnage, that's not the kind of damage you can just buff out. And the predictions for the future agree on two points: it's going to get worse, and it won't return to what it was for years to come.
We didn't know sales for the U.S. auto industry in 2008 would be this bad when the year began, but it sure ended on a fitting note. Over the past six months or so we've seen the U.S. auto sales market nearly collapse and almost take our own domestic auto industry with it.
We really didn't expect good news... J.D. Power and Associates, the global information services company who seem to have highly regarded insight within the industry, is predicting auto sales this year to hit short of their original estimates. According to the firm, declining consumer confidence, lower spending, and turbulent financial and economic market conditions will contribute to an anticipated drop in new light-vehicle sales in 2008 that will put total sales at their lowest level since 1994