While the economy continues to drag its heels, auto sales for June have surged. The number of cars sold domestically is a leading indicator of consumer confidence.
Auto sales booming
The nation’s Auto sales figures for June have surpassed projections. Some analysts had predicted a second consecutive slow month for the industry. However, several automakers saw their best months since the start of the Great Recession.
Recent reports by Edmunds and J. D. Power both indicate that last month’s auto sales were a full 20 percent higher than they were a year ago. According to The Car Connection, that means about 1.27 million new vehicles left showrooms and dealer lots in June.
Jesse Toprak, Vice President of Market Intelligence for TrueCar.com said:
“Despite the relative slowdown in the last two months, the auto industry continues to experience improved profitability with strong year-over-year sales, historically high transaction prices and precise incentives spending.”
Sales have been up this year, and it appears those numbers are continuing to grow. However, the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami accounted for much of last year’s reduced sales.
Asian automakers bounce back
Toyota was the clear leader in the industry last month, bouncing back from last year’s tragic setbacks to see a 60.3 percent year-over-year sales growth.
Toyota division group vice president Bob Carter said he expects those numbers to grow even higher:
“We expect to see continued stability in the automotive market during the second half of 2012, thanks to pent-up demand, low interest rates and a continued influx of new products.”
Honda raise its sales by 48.8 percent in the last year. Its luxury Lexus line saw even greater strides, growing by 76.5 percent.
Nissan posted gains of 28.8 percent, with its Infiniti luxury division climbing an impressive 66.1 percent.
Domestic automakers also saw significant sales growth, though not to the degree experienced by their Asian counterparts. Chrysler had its best June since 2007, with a solid 20 percent gain from last year. Likewise, GM saw its best sales since September 2008. It posted a 16 percent year-over-year gain in June. Ford fared the least well of the Big Three. It grew by a modest 7 percent.
Volkswagen grew only by 34.5 percent. Respectable, for sure, but not up to its boasts of becoming the world’s top automaker. Porsche climbed 17.9 percent. BMW boosted sales only by 0.4 percent,.
Automakers, domestic and foreign, now have their fingers crossed that June’s sales are not just a fluke. And so should American consumers.