Highlights and notes from the March U.S. Sales report.
Items of note from March U.S. Light Vehicle sales:
- With GM reporting March sales early in the day, and the industry racking up its 19th consecutive month of year-over-year gains, one fact that largely slipped under the radar yesterday was that grabbed it's lowest share of the U.S. market ever: 16.5%.
- The previous low of 16.6% was set in March 2011. Buick and Cadillac - which have been growth brands for the auto maker both underperformed the market, as did a number of the company's high-volume CUVs.
- Mid-size cars were the largest selling segment for the second consecutive month, and grabbed an 11-year high share of 23.5%.
- Prior to February CUVs had been the market's top-selling segment for 28 months, dating back to month immediately following the close of Cash-for-Clunkers.
- Nissan had its best volume sales and daily sales in March, but only its second-best market share, falling less than a tenth of a share point short of the company's benhmrk 9.75% take in March 2011.
- ’s share dropped to 9.1% in March from 9.6% in February and 10.8% a year ago. Its first-quarter share of 9.3% was its lowest for the period since 2007.
- Every one of Honda' cars recorded a double-digit shortfall.
- Honda truck increased 9.5% thanks to a 35.2% surge of CR-V sales. Excluding CR-V, Honda’s truck sales declined 2.1% from last year.
- Mitsubishi’s sales were down 8.7% despite healthy gains by the Galant midsize sedan and the Outlander Sport small CUV.
- U.S. Light Vehicles set a new record for fuel efficiency on the WardsAuto Fuel Efficiency Index for the third consecutive month.
- Six companies, including GM, reached all-time highs on the WardsAuto Fuel Efficiency Index in March.
- Fiesta daily sales dropped 35.9% from year-ago. But the comparison comes against the vehicle's best-ever daily rate of 362 units. this March's 232 DSR is actually the new Fiesta's fifth best daily rate since its June 2010 launch.
- Toyota sold 200,000 light vehicles for the first time since the August 2009 Cash-for-Clunkers sales spike.