Counting Cars

September Sales Thread: SAAR Best Since Spring 2008


U.S. Light Vehicle Sales reporting thread: Company updates throughout the day.

September 2012 Light Vehicle Sales Volume:
WardsAuto forecast: 1.16 million units
Actual: 1.184 million
Differential: 1.8%   
September 2012 Light Vehicle SAAR:
WardsAuto forecast: 14.60 million
Projected Actual SAAR: 14.89 million

2:56 p.m. Volvo reports 4,640 units, brings final SAAR to 14.87 million units, best since March 2008, pre-dating summer '08 gas price crisis and Sep '08 financial crisis.

Ford's 14.4% of U.S. LV sales, lowest market share for company since Aug. 2009.

2:39 p.m. Honda reports sales up 31% over year-ago. 117,211 just better than expecations. With only small-volume auto seller Volvo to report, estimated SAAR sits at 14.89 million units.

1:44 p.m. With known totals, it would appear that Ford will almost certainly grab its lowest monthly U.S. LV market share since Cash for Clunkers in July/August 2009.

1:20 p.m. Ahead of detailed manufacturer, Bloomberg tweeting that Honda sales are up 31%, which would push SAAR past 14.8 million units, for first time since April 2008.

1:00 p.m. Hyundai total on twitter - 60,026 units, up 15.3%. With Kia, Koreans balloon estimated SAAR to 14.8 million. Honda only Top 7 company stil to report.

12:37 p.m.   Kia avoided the type of August to September dropoff in DSR that it and sister-company Hyundai usually experience, to improve its year-over-year sales by 35%, crushing expectation by 15.5%. European Luxury brands also pulled ahead of forecast levels, with BMW increasing its sales by 3.5% for the month (7.1% YTD) and MErcedes improving sales by nearly 9% (15.1% YTD). The three companies results boosted the estimated SAAR to nearly 14.7 million units, despite underwhelming performances by Ford and GM.

11:50 a.m. GM saying that low September sales due to rental pull-ahead sales in August. In August, though, company was touting success of Olymipc ads. Didn't know rental companies were so suggestible.
VW reports sales up 34.4%, slighly below expectations, but German sister-company Audi exceeds expectations, with sales rising 26.5% for the month.

11:07 a.m.: Nissan sales down 1.1% - in line with WardsAuto forecast at 91,907. With 5 of Top 7 reporting SAAR sits at 14.5 million.

10:58 a.m. Subaru reports 27,683 deliveries - up 32.2%

10:18 a.m. First time since April that Toyota outsells Ford in LVs - only second time since July 2010.

Ford Light Vehicle sales drop 0.9% to 170,978 units. Fusion sales down -37%, offsetting much of the 91.4% gain in Focus sales (acheived against an anemic year-ago month for the small car) F-Series total, including med. dty, up just 1.2%, as anticipated truck rally fails to materialize.
Detroit 3 combined sales up just 3.2% over year-ago.

10:00 a.m. GM reports sales up just 1.5% for the month to 210K, against Ward's expectations of 4%. Cadillac sales lagged year ago by 1.5%, thought Buick was a bright spot, up 7.9%. Chrysler's gains look more impressive still. Silverado pickups DROP 16.6%.

9:40 a.m.Toyota reports 171,910 units. Directly in line with WardsAuto forecast. 41.5% increase represents positive recovery from year-ago's inventory strapped results.

9:00 a.m.: Chrysler reports 11.7% increase in sales - 141,392 light vehicles. Best September for the company since 2007: a year before the financial crisis. Ram picups rise 6%, not bad, but less than anticipated.


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Blogs and commentary about automotive data, industry trends, and the future of the auto industry.


John Sousanis

John Sousanis oversees WardsAuto data operations as Director of Information Content, and is Ward’sAuto sales analyst. Follow John on Twitter @CountingCars.  

Haig Stoddard

Haig Stoddard is a veteran automotive industry analyst. His current focus is North America production and longterm sales forecasting.
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