Just don't tell the automotive buying public. Sales remained strong in October, with the seasonally adjusted annual sales rate staying well above 16 million for the seventh month in a row. For those keeping track, that's more than a million higher than it was in 2013, and it bodes well for a strong finish to the 2014 model year here in the US.
The biggest gains were seen by the Chrysler Group, marking its 55th straight month of sales gains, led by strong sales of its Jeep and Ram truck models. Nearly every automaker commented on robust light truck, SUV and crossover sales – shout out to the Buick Encore, which was the best-selling model from that nameplate in October – which likely can be traced to falling gas prices and an overall improved economy. Nissan also performed well, earning a 13-percent sales gain over the previous year.
We'd like to welcome Volkswagen back to the land of greener pastures. After 18 consecutive months of falling sales, the German brand's eight-percent gain in October was surely met with cheers from brand executives, though they'd surely like to see a higher figure than the roughly 30,000 sales it notched in October. In any case, a gain is a gain. Audi, VW's premium brand, is looking to finish 2014 strong with its fifth straight year of increased sales.
Rounding out the highlights, Subaru continued setting the sales floor ablaze last month, earning its 35th-straight month of gains and again setting records for the company. We again have to congratulate Mitsubishi on another solid month of sales, and Maserati remains at the top of our chart, as it has all year, by more than doubling its output from a year ago. The only big loser of the month was Jaguar Land Rover, which saw sales plummet by nearly 20 percent.
Interested in getting down and dirty with all the sordid sales data? Feel free to peruse past sales recaps by checking out our By The Numbers category here.