By on August 18, 2010

Wrangler went on a summer tear last month, more than doubling its July 2009 number, and leading SUVs to a strong rally. The segment’s top 18 nameplates all improved their year-over-year numbers last month, as gas prices look to hold steady through the summer (only the Suzuki Grand Vitara lost ground). SUVs should be way up again (year-on-year) this month as well, as Cash For Clunkers limited SUV sales in August 2009. Strong sales in this segment could continue into the fall on the strength of new launches like the Jeep Grand Cherokee, and Ford Explorer. On the other hand, with the Explorer moving to a Crossover platform and lines between SUVs and CUVs generally blurring, it’s becoming increasingly important to compare mid/large CUVs against this SUV segment. Based on that comparison, it’s easy to see that the mass market tends to pick road-oriented people-haulers rather than offroad-oriented rock crawlers. SUVs may be booming this summer, but in the big picture they’re melting away into the ever-expanding Crossover category. Hit the jump for a bonus graph of Luxury-brand SUV/CUV sales in July.

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45 Comments on “Chart Of The Day: SUVs And Luxury/Premium SUV/CUVs...”


  • avatar
    Invisible

    Why is the Grand Cherokee listed with the SUVs? All the others are body on frame. Last time I checked, the Grand Cherokee is unibody like the Pilot, Highlander…

  • avatar
    portico

    Question: How does the Suzuki Grand Vitara as well as Dodge Nitro get listed on this graph and the Ford Escape does not?

  • avatar
    zerofoo

    I’m driving a rented 2010 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited 4-door while on vacation in Outer Banks and I’ve got to say, the Wrangler has come a long way.

    The fit and finish is lightyears ahead of the rattletrap Jeeps I remember during college. Sure they were capable off-road, but you wouldn’t want one as a daily driver.

    This 2010 is tight, quiet, and comfortable. The partial removable hard top is also very cool. Most of the topless benefits without the soft-top hassle and leaks.

    The only gripe is the lump-of-a-motor 3.8 V6. This thing desperately needs the new “Pentastar” V6 that is in the 2011 Grand Cherokee.

    Other than the gripe about the motor, I was pleasantly surprised by the overall daily usability of the Wrangler, and it’s still great off-road.

    -ted

    • 0 avatar
      ash78

      I still maintain that a turbodiesel 4 would be the best all-around engine in the Wrangler, with an optional diesel 6.

      I really love the vehicle (and I’m a car guy), but the economy-for-power ratio could use a lot of work for most people’s daily driving.

      And let’s face it, even serious offroaders are generally constrained to the weekend.

    • 0 avatar

      Mr. Marchionne, Federalize this Engine!

      The rest of the world gets the Wrangler with the sweet 2.8L VM Motori I4. The USDM got a teaser taste of this engine in the 05-06 Liberty.

      http://www.jeep.co.uk/wrangler/specs.html

      Allpar mentions that a V6 Diesel from VM is in the pipeline for the new Grand and Wrangler.

    • 0 avatar
      aspade

      The problem isn’t that the 3.8 is a lump – although it is – but the colossal weight which the Wrangler has put on to keep up with federal crash test mandates.

      A JK Unlimited weighs in the vicinity of 4,500 lbs. It’s like a TJ with 20 bags of concrete crushing the life out of it.

    • 0 avatar
      NulloModo

      aspade –

      While is all the more reason a diesel would be a perfect fit for the Wrangler. Top speed isn’t important, if you can hit 80mph on the highway you are good to go, you really don’t want to take a Wrangler much beyond that anyway.

      A torquey diesel would help move the mass and get it 0-30 effortlessly, which would help a lot in around town driving, and probably help fuel economy too, and wouldn’t hurt it much 0-60.

      Considering that the 3.8 makes 240 lb/ft by at over 4000 rpm, even a very small engine tuned for efficiency over power like the VW 2.0 would probably help driveability with it’s 236 lbs/ft at 1500 rpm. The Wrangler has plenty of space under the hood though, so you could easily stick something like the 4.9 liter diesel from the Mitsubishi Fuso line in there that makes close to 400 lbs/ft of torque at around 1600 rpm. Even the previous VM Motori diesel used in the Liberty made close to 300 lbs/ft of torque at a low RPM, and owners of those vehicles seem to love them so much you rarely see them on the used market at a reasonable price.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      The ChryslerCo 3.8L is very similar to GM’s 3800. It does provide decent torque down low (about 203ft-lb @ 1200rpm), although it can’t compete with a diesel’s output.

      Although a bad fit for the Wrangler, I’ve always thought it would be much better suited for duty in the base Charger SE/300 than the 2.7L DOHC they chose to use.

    • 0 avatar
      crc

      AEV will swap in a Hemi. Or get their J8 with the diesel. Problem solved.

    • 0 avatar

      Nullo makes a good point, but I do not expect you could swap Mitsu diesel into a Wrangler and remain CARB compliant. In fact even Liberty’s CRD diesel was not (it had a 49-state emissions compliance). Also, you probably can only do it on a manual. I do not see 42RLE slushbox taking it, so here comes transmission swap, and to what exactly?

  • avatar
    AlmostFamous

    The Grand Cherokee is rwd, body on frame. The Jeep Liberty is a fwd unibody design like the Highlander, Pilot, etc…

  • avatar
    gslippy

    Somewhere, a treehugger is rending their clothes after seeing this chart.

  • avatar
    Jeff Semenak

    So, I guess the Wrangler numbers were not pumped up by Fleet sales ?

  • avatar

    No Buick Enclave in the luxury CUVs?

  • avatar
    jpcavanaugh

    It would appear that Chrysler/Jeep owns this segment. As much as we talk about Chrysler’s stale product, the Wrangler is quite recent. It has gotten a little big for my tastes, but it seems to be selling pretty well. I was surprised. There is a significantly improved interior on the way (according to Allpar) which will not hurt it.

    Also, Grand Cherokee will be the one to watch. The new ones have barely hit the dealers. Once they are available in volume, it will be interesting to see how the vehicle fares against the Tahoe.

  • avatar
    ExPatBrit

    Wow , Chrysler Fiat won something.

    All versions of the Grand Cherokee since 1993 are unibody.

    • 0 avatar
      BDB

      Indeed. Here’s hoping all their new product is as good as the GC. Quite a turnaround on the interiors, especially.

      Still, I say they’re not out of the woods or even close to it until they have a competitive mid-size sedan. They new 300c and Charger could be knock-down, dragout gorgeous inside and out but without a real offering in the mid-size market they’re not going to come back.

      That’s why I’m still far more sanguine about the future of GM and Ford than Chrysler. Whatever you want to say about Ford and especially GM, they do have very competitive and in some aspects class-leading entries in that field. Imagine if GM was still pushing 2005 Malibus and Ford still pushing the 2004 Taurus. That’s what Chrysler is doing with the Sebring/Avenger.

  • avatar
    Z71_Silvy

    Wow…that rebadged Flex is on FIRE!!!!!!

    • 0 avatar
      BDB

      Seeing the Cadillac SRX’s numbers, I wouldn’t be throwing stones in glass houses there, Matt.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      It pains me to defend Z71_Silvy in any thread, but the SRX appears to be selling quite well. The 648 sales figure is from July 2009; for this year, it sold 5,723 units in July, which is the second-highest number in the segment. It’s hardly a failure at this point, and much more of a success than the Lincoln MKT.

    • 0 avatar
      BDB

      You’re right, I miseread the chart.

      Still, i think the SRX is a little low-rent for Cadillac. It would make a great Buick, though.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      I’m not wild about the SRX’s styling, but the public seems to like it. The MKT, though, just leaves me scratching my head. The public seems to agree with me on that one.

    • 0 avatar
      SVX pearlie

      I agree that the SRX really shoulda been a Buick. With how well the SRX is selling and Buick on the rebound, I wouldn’t be surprised to see GM sell a pure RX competitor with a tri-shield badge in the near future.

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      Seeing the Cadillac SRX’s numbers, I wouldn’t be throwing stones in glass houses there, Matt.

      Yeah…you sure showed me.

      Do some research before you get all defensive. And why bring up a GM product…why not bring up the R-Class or the XC70?

      It pains me to defend Z71_Silvy in any thread,

      The TRUTH does not need defending in “any thread”.

      ———————-

      If anyone wants the Navigator numbers…here they are:

      July 2009 Monthly Sales: 450
      July 2009 YTD Sales: 3544

      July 2010 Monthly Sales: 566
      July 2010 YTD Sales: 4725

      So…it would slot right BELOW the Flex rebadge.

    • 0 avatar
      NulloModo

      The new SRX is doing genuinely well, which is a shame, because the previous version as a superior vehicle in almost every way, the wagon-like styling just killed it in sales.

      Comparing the SRX and the MKT is a bit off though, as one is 5 passenger only, the other 7 passenger standard, and start off with over a $10,000 price difference.

      There’s also the problem that the Flex is so nice, most people don’t really need to spend the extra money on the Lincoln variant. The Flex is holding steady in the mid 3,000 sales per month range, which would put it pretty high up on the luxury SUV/CUV chart, which, even though Ford isn’t a luxury nameplate, the average transaction price on Flexes is more in line with the luxury models than with the mainstream brand ones.

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      Comparing the SRX and the MKT is a bit off though, as one is 5 passenger only, the other 7 passenger standard, and start off with over a $10,000 price difference.

      Only a bit off?

      It’s like comparing a fishing boat to the QE2…

    • 0 avatar
      NulloModo


      Z71_Silvy:
      Comparing the SRX and the MKT is a bit off though as one is 5 passenger only, the other 7 passenger standard, and start off with over a $10,000 price difference.

      Only a bit off?,
      It’s like comparing a fishing boat to the QE2…

      You said it man, not me…

    • 0 avatar
      gimmeamanual

      He didn’t say it, geeber did.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    Wow I still don’t get the Wrangler sales. Can’t comment on the 4DR but the 2DR is such a useless waste. Wonder how many of those sales are 4 doors? That might explain it. When I vacationed in Hawaii they were everywhere on rental lots. I rented a minivan.

    • 0 avatar

      Wrangler sales have generally been a 60/40 split in favour of the 4-door for this generation.

      Also, useless waste? Coming from a guy who rents a minivan in Hawaii? Grow a pair, or grab them back from your significant other, holy shit.

    • 0 avatar
      NulloModo

      I haven’t seen many Wranglers on rental lots, but I don’t rent cars very often. I could see Hawaii being a place where they would be popular though.

      I’ve also heard that the four door is more popular, but I would never buy one. The only Wranger to get, IMO, is a two with the soft top and the half doors. As much progress as the Wrangler has made in the general comfort category, I think most owners will still be unsatisfied with one as a daily driver or family-conveyance vehicle. Get the two with the soft windows and top so that you can take them all down and make it look good.

    • 0 avatar

      I bought a 2D version mostly for the purpose of having my midlife crisis car at last. It basically is a Miata 4×4, only more customizable. The 4D is way more practical: 1. can tow 3500 (2D limited to 2500), 2. fuel tank is bigger, 3. can carry 4 adults and their luggage, which comes into play when you’re picking relatives at an airport. The fuel mileage is about the same. The local off-road area has some obstacles that are easier to take on a 2D, but you can do everything necessary in the 4D as well.

    • 0 avatar

      I own a two-door Wrangler with a soft top (A lifted ’00 TJ with a broken hardtop), and my next vehicle will be a 4-door Wrangler Unlimited. Not because I’m unsatisfied with it in any way-DDing it is getting a little old, with 20 minutes of highway driving, a rough transmission and a lot of vibrations, as 12-year-old, lifted Jeeps are wont to do-but because the 4-door version offers 99% of the utility of the 2-door (Turns a bit wider, but otherwise every bit as capable as far as I’ve seen), but with the added utility of a real trunk and back seat.

      I understand why people don’t like them, when looking at the perspective of a purely off-road machine, but for a DD and something you want to drive around for any period of time, possibly with your friends and/or stuff and can STILL beat around offroad on weekends, it’s a hell of a machine-I test-drove a ’10 Rubicon, and the improvement in road manners over my ’00 is amazing.

      Plus, you can stick 32″s under them off the lot (The Rubicon and Mountain have them even), wheras I had to lift mine to do that. Once the ’12s come out with a Pentastar and/or Fiat-sourced diesel, I’ll be on that like a fat kid on a sundae.

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      I’ll be on that like a fat kid on a sundae.

      Win.

  • avatar
    joeveto3

    I’m curious to see what the 4Runner numbers level out at, and to see if they are higher or lower than the previous generation. I still haven’t warmed up to the redesign.

    • 0 avatar
      Quentin

      I bought a 2010 back in April. They had been out since Sept, and up to that point, I’d seen, on the road, maybe a half dozen. Since I’ve purchased mine, I’ve seen them all over the place. I think the lack of advertising made most people unaware that it was redesigned at all. When I told a few friends that I had bought a new 4Runner, they were shocked when they actually saw that it wasn’t the 4th gen and was a new design instead. I think awareness of the new model is starting to increase and that has helped sales since January.

      I’ve gotten nothing but compliments on it and regularly observe 22mpg or better. Very, very happy with the purchase.

      I doubt the sales will ever return to the levels of the mid 00s, but that is because the Highlander is a better value for those that don’t want to get too far off the beaten path. It has far more interior space, probably gets better fuel economy in the real world, rides much smoother (not like a BOF SUV, haha), and you get more options for the money.

  • avatar
    mjz

    2011 Wrangler interior is a VAST improvement. New body color top looks good too. Now we just need the Pentastar and a diesel.

  • avatar
    Nick

    Suzuki is kicking ass with their Grand Vitara.  :)


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