Throughout most of the history of the US auto industry, the Detroit Three sat atop of the sales charts with General Motors claiming first, Ford in second and Chrysler placing third. In the past few years Toyota has clawed its way past Chrysler and then Ford, and now it appears that Honda too has now passed the Pentastar. Barring some miraculous (and we mean truly outstanding) development, Honda will officially overcome Chrysler to become the fourth largest automaker in the States. Honda holds a rather insurmountable 200,000 unit cushion against its competition from Auburn Hills, MI -- more vehicles than any automaker sold during the month of November. Speaking of November, Chrysler was the only major automaker to see a sales decline, down 18.5 percent with a mere 65,000 units sold. Honda fared better with over 74,000 products sold.

While Honda's victory on the sales charts is indisputable, neither automaker is making a big deal about it. A Honda exec reportedly told Automotive News that it only worries about it internal sales numbers and doesn't focus on ranks. Chrysler spokeswoman Kathy Graham told AN that the company is on the right track to improve its standing, adding, "We are taking the steps that are necessary to have a good foundation and to build consumer confidence." Graham also said that the company is expecting better results in the future on account of its increased advertising spending. If Chrysler doesn't reverse its sales slide, the next automaker to pass team Pentastar could be Nissan -- the Japanese automaker finished only 7,000 units behind Chrysler in November.

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]

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