DETROIT -- Incentives and the seemingly unstoppable force of the economy, the consumer, kept year-end sales for 2001 to where they were most of the year, surprisingly high, and gave the industry its second-best year on record. December U.S. light-vehicle sales finished with a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 16.44 million, significantly down from the prior two months, but still a solid finish to the fourth quarter, which posted an 18.60 million SAAR, highest for any quarter on ...

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