By on August 12, 2013
Retail July 2013 retail sales July 2013 % retail July 2012 retail sales July 2012 % retail July % change
General Motors 189,100 81% 153,500 76% 23%
Toyota Motor 184,600 95% 158,400 96% 17%
Ford Motor 151,000 78% 126,800 73% 19%
American Honda 138,600 98% 114,600 98% 21%
Chrysler Group 125,700 90% 103,600 82% 21%
Hyundai-Kia 98,200 85% 98,400 89% 0%
Nissan N.A. 95,800 88% 91,300 93% 5%
Top 7 983,000 87% 846,600 85% 16%
Fleet July 2013 fleet sales July 2013 % fleet July 2012 fleet sales July 2012 % fleet July % of change
General Motors 45,000 19% 47,700 24% –6%
Ford Motor 42,700 22% 47,200 27% –9%
Hyundai-Kia 16,800 15% 11,700 11% 43%
Chrysler Group 14,400 10% 22,500 18% –36%
Nissan N.A. 13,300 12% 7,100 7% 87%
Toyota Motor 8,800 5% 6,500 4% 34%
American Honda 2,800 2% 2,300 2% 21%
Top 7 143,800 13% 145,000 15% –1%
Source: Automotive News

After a continuing effort to reduce reliance on fleet sales in the U.S. market, all three domestic American automakers reported declining fleet sales in July while they were up significantly at Nissan, Toyota and Hyundai-Kia. Chrysler fleet sales were down 36 percent from the same period last year, Ford was down 9 percent and GM down 6 percent. In terms of units, the domestic brands’ fleet sales were down 15,300 vehicle. Meanwhile, sales to fleets were up 34% at Toyota, up 43% at Hyundai-Kia Automotive and a whopping 87 percent at Nissan’s North American operations.

Overall fleet sales for the seven biggest car companies were off 1% to 143,800 while retail volume was up 16% to 983,000 units.

For the year, all three domestic automakers report that retail sales have been a greater percentage of the mix. At Chrysler, dealer deliveries are up 16% while fleet deliveries were down 8%, at GM retail was up 12% while fleet sales were flat, compared to 2012, and while fleet sales were up at Ford, 8%, their percentage of Ford’s overall sales went down because retail deliveries were up 15%.

So far this year, Detroit automakers have trimmed their reliance on fleet sales and boosted retail. Chrysler leads this trend, increasing sales through dealers 16 percent while reducing fleet 8 percent. GM fleet activity through seven months was flat but retail was 12 percent higher. Ford was up 8 percent on fleet and 15 percent on retail.

For the first 7 months of 2013, Toyota was down 6% on fleet sales and up 10% on retail deliveries. Nissan was up 8% for fleet and 9% for retail. A 7% drop in retail sales at Hyundai-Kia, caused in part by inventory issues related to Korean labor unrest, was offset by a 62% increase in fleet sales, leaving overall sales flat.

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112 Comments on “July Fleet Sales: Detroit Down, Asians Up...”


  • avatar
    DenverMike

    An OEM or dealer can restrict fleet sales and sets its own rules as who qualifies as a “fleet customer”. If you don’t already own 15 vehicles or buy 5 new vehicles a year, you may not be a qualified “fleet customer”.

    But at the same time, they can not stop a fleet (type) buyer from buying stripper, base vehicles with rebates and other discounts to add to their fleet. Of course if the fleet buyer is buying multiple cars, the dealer wants to make those sales and will drastically reduce prices to sell multiple cars in one transaction. And sales still get recorded as “retail”.

    Then there’s “Fleetail”. Fleet pricing, but still technically “retail” and record as such.

    http://www.tundraheadquarters.com/blog/2011/01/19/fleet-sales-versus-retail-sales-trucks/

    • 0 avatar
      kenzter

      Agreed.
      Something is odd with Honda’s numbers. Folks love repeating that Honda doesn’t do fleet. Then where does Enterprise and Hertz get all those used Honda’s?
      A quick check of listings in SoCal shows they have roughly the same number of Honda’s as they do Kia’s.
      I don’t know the breakdown of Hyundai-Kia, but even if it were only 10% Kia (unlikely), thats still nearly 10k cars….vs 2800 for Honda. Yet Enterprise and Hertz have similar inventories? Weird.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        I was told that many of those Honda cars and others are bought at auction at the end of a model year from combined unsold stock.

        A friend of mine who works for America’s largest Federal Prime Contractor buys all his fleet vehicles that way for the Motor Pool of the corporation he works for.

        • 0 avatar
          bd2

          While Honda does not have a fleet purchase program, they do do fleet sales via sales thru dealerships and sold a good no. of the pre-refresh Civic to fleet.

          Also, keep in mind that fleet sales is made up of govt., commercial and rental fleet.

          Over 40% of Fusion fleet sales is to govt. and commercial while over 90% of Camry fleet sales is to rental.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Yeah, I know about the Camry rentals. Had plenty of them during some of my travels. But I was impressed with the Sonata I got on a lark.

            The girl at the counter must have thought I needed a boost in my day, and that Sonata was a blast to drive.

            I even got stopped by a CHP on I-8 and was let off with a written warning for overtaking traffic while in the left lane.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch1011

        Enterprise and Hertz get their Hondas at the same place that you would — at a dealership.

        Honda corporate doesn’t have a fleet department. That doesn’t mean that Honda has zero fleet sales, but its fleet volumes are very low.

  • avatar
    TheEndlessEnigma

    Leave it to intrepid TTAC readers to find fault with any article casting a positive light on domestic auto makers.

  • avatar
    Monty

    Fleet sales are not neccessarily bad, unlike rental sales. I bet Toyota would love them some fleet sales of the Tundra.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      “Toyota would love them some fleet sales of the Tundra.”

      I don’t think that will ever happen because even the lowest Tundra Grade model is waaaaay more expensive than a comparable half-ton Detroit equivalent.

      Tundra and Titan are aimed at buyers like me, guys who have owned Silverado, F150 and RAM before and don’t want to go back there again. The fans of Detroit trucks should be ecstatic since that leaves more for them to choose from.

      Granted, neither Tundra nor Titan sell many of their trucks but at least they are available for those who want to spend the extra money and get something other than a half-ton Silverado, F150 or RAM. And every Tundra or Titan sold is one less sale for Ford, GM or RAM.

      Besides, Toyota sells as many Tundras as they can but cannot even satisfy the demand for the Tacoma. That’s why Tacoma is also waaaaaaay overpriced.

      And with GM, Ford and Chrysler having abandoned that mid-size/compact truck market for the time being, Tacoma has no competition since the Frontier is a niche truck only for loyal Nissan fans.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        “Besides, Toyota sells as many Tundras as they can” – really? They built a factory to make 200,000 and they sell less than half that. Only in 2007 did they sell close to 200,000.
        Are you suggesting they are happy with that situation?

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          Yeah, really! That’s all the market there is for Tundra.

          The capacity of their factory is not going to waste.

          Isn’t it better to overbuild a facility for greater capacity, or would you rather Toyota followed Hyundai’s suit and built their facility too small, like Hyundai did.

          Look at all the overcapacity of your much-loved domestic brands. I have not seen any waste on such a grand scale with anything Toyota has attempted here, or abroad.

          • 0 avatar
            mike978

            Much loved domestic brands? What, I have a Toyota and a Subaru and will either by a Mazda 6 or a Honda Accord next, some domestic lover I am! Just because I don`t but into the black and white world of you.

            You really say with a straight face that Toyota purposely built their factory too large and set sales goals 100% larger than they sell 9200K vs actual 100K)? That is some spin.

            Of course they can use the capacity for some other model but it is a lie to say they set out on purpose to build a factory in TX for the Tundra and planned from day 1 to build something else there too.

          • 0 avatar

            I could be mistaken but I believe that the domestic car companies’ North American operations are operating at capacity or even over it. Last week we ran a news item about Ford looking to increase line speed by just one or two cars per hour to increase the supply of Escapes from the Louisville plant. At the end of last year, Ford’s North American operations were running at 114% of their rated capacity. Remember, a lot of factories were shut down from 2007-2009.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            @Mike978
            “for some other model but it is a lie to say they set out on purpose to build a factory in TX for the Tundra and planned from day 1 to build something else there too.”

            Seeing Toyota is moving there as a result of the closure of the NUMMI plant, I would expect it would be building something else.

          • 0 avatar
            APaGttH

            No – it’s not better to build a factory for overcapacity. Following LEAN manufacturing a factory is most efficient at 100% capacity and efficiency and costs go up as utilization goes down.

            Building factories and using them to 100% capacity (or mathematically speaking over 100% capacity) is one of the biggest keys to Toyota’s success. Over capacity is dead weight to any manufacturer.

          • 0 avatar
            mike978

            RR – The San Antonio factory opened in 2006 and NUMMI closed in 2010. Toyota built the SA plant for full Tundra production of 200K units a year. They said so. They didn`t know NUMMI was going to fall apart 4 years later.
            It was lucky for them it did so they could fill the hole caused by under expectation sales of the Tundra. As has been said by others lean manufacturing, of which Toyota is the leading exponent, calls for 100% utilisation. Not 50% by design!

          • 0 avatar
            Carlson Fan

            Yep, hacing owned 2 Toyotas I can tell you their strength has never beeen in designing and engineering great cars, It’s that they manufacture better than anyone else.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            Hyundai/Kia didn’t build their plants “too small” – since they are capable of producing 320k units a year (granted, with 3 shifts running).

            What they need is another plant in NA.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            bd2, since Hyundai products started selling well in the US, they do need more capacity.

            Unless things have changed since the time I visited their plant several years back, they have enough property to add another assembly line or two. Hiring enough people may be more difficult unless they want to relocate to that area.

            Until just recently, the much-loved domestic brands also suffered from underutilized capacity. In fact there were some plant closing scheduled — I had no interest so I did not keep up with that.

            Now things have changed because Americans are a bit more optimistic about the future and today, those who can, are buying cars again. So production has to be increased, even for the much-cherished domestics, even if they’re built in Canada and Mexico, ya?

            I do not believe that Toyota built their factory too large. I believe they built it with contingencies in mind and will be utilizing capacity more effectively.

            Overcapacity is usually the result of loss of sales or decreased demand. In the case of the Tundra, as great as that truck is, I cannot ever envision it even coming near the sales numbers of the domestic trucks.

            The Tundra and the Titan are niche vehicles built for people who do not want to buy a Ford, GM or RAM truck. Simple as that.

            What irks the domestic truck manufacturers is that every sale of a Tundra or Titan is one less for them, and they do keep selling them. Maybe not in large numbers, but they still have takers.

      • 0 avatar
        kenzter

        The only Tundra I have driven was from the National counter at LAS. They were out of compacts, and offered my the Tundra or an Altima.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          Hah, another fellow, like myself, who doesn’t care about the price of gas.

          Truth be told, faced with that same choice, I would also have chosen the Tundra.

          I was faced with a similar choice once, a brand new F150 4-door 4X4 or a Sentra. We chose the F150 and the gas for the trip cost us more than the week-long rental of the F150. Seriously!

    • 0 avatar
      mmmach1

      That’s funny Fleet sales are rental sales but now that its the Imports fleets sales are A-OK

  • avatar
    J.Emerson

    It is somewhat surprising to me that Toyota’s overall fleet sales are in decline. But I still stand behind the premise of my previous article about the Camry, for several reasons. The available evidence indicates that the Camry and Corolla make up the vast majority of Toyota’s fleet sales. Too-high Camry inventory will put Toyota in a bind as the new model year cars start to hit dealers. The only real solution will be more discounts and a hunt for places to put those cars.

    And as long as the domestics have the market basically cornered on pickups and full-size SUV’s, their fleet percentage will be higher.

    • 0 avatar
      gmichaelj

      I applaud TTAC’s publishing of these statistics: helps in understanding the overall picture. It would be great to see this consistently from month to month.

      It would also be terrific if these amounts could be broken down by model. As others have stated, high Camry/Fusion fleet sales and high Tundra/F-series fleet sales could have different interpretations.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      J.Emerson,

      Where are you getting your data?

      • 0 avatar
        J.Emerson

        What data point are you referring to?

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          Fleet percentages for any specific model. Your comment implies some knowledge of fleet sales by model.

          • 0 avatar
            J.Emerson

            I don’t have that specific data point, sorry. I can only go with anecdotal evidence based on what I see go through the remarketing auctions, the composition of rental fleets, etc. It’s not scientific by any means but it does at least give a general sense of Toyota’s fleet mix.

            If you have more specific data, I would love to see it.

          • 0 avatar
            goldtownpe

            So your hit piece the other day about the Camry was not based on scientific facts but just anecdotal evidence. You do know that anecdotal evidence is considered dubious support of a claim.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      Unless I have read the text and tables wrong, isn`t it a typo in the text to say fleet declined 6% for Toyota. The numbers go from 6500 in 2012 to 8800 in 2013 (YTD in both cases). That is a 35% increase.

      I am surprised following other articles and comments on here that their fleet sales are “only” 5%.
      I am also amazed at the Chrysler data given the reputation for the Avenger and 200.

      • 0 avatar

        It looks to me that the chart is for July sales only, not Year To Date. The 6% figure is for Jan-July.

      • 0 avatar
        goldtownpe

        It’s up for the month of July but down 6% YTD. Those numbers in the table are just for the month of July not YTD.

        I believe the “enthusiast” have greatly exaggerated Toyota’s death spiral into fleet sales. If 15% fleet sales make the Camry a failure what does 30% fleet sales say about the much loved Fusion?

        http://www.autoblog.com/2013/07/01/toyota-camry-incentives-and-fleet-sales-cranked-to-keep-sales-cr/

        • 0 avatar
          mike978

          Thanks Ronnie and goldtownpe – my mistake thinking it was Jan-Jul.

        • 0 avatar
          bd2

          Again, over 40% of Fusion fleet sales is to govt. and commercial while most of the Camry’s fleet sales is to rental.

          • 0 avatar
            goldtownpe

            Fusion still have a higher percentage that lands on rental lots than Camry.

            2011 CY
            Fusion = 20.5% daily rental
            Camry = 13.5 % daily rental

            http://www.automotive-fleet.com/statistics/statsviewer.aspx?file=http%3a%2f%2fwww.automotive-fleet.com%2ffc_resources%2fstats%2faffb12-20-car-reg.pdf&channel=

            2011 CY is the latest data available from automotive-fleet.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            I’m well aware of Automotive Fleet’s data, but that was for 2011 – the year of the tsunami (when Toyota stated it had supply issues) and the year when the new Camry launched.

            Things are much different in 2013 – esp. now that the new Fusion is much more compelling than the old one.

            And even in the year of the tsunami and the supply crunch, Toyota still sent 45,900 Corollas (19.4%) and 17,200 of the Yaris to fleet (a mind-blowing 52.2% to fleet).

            And still 43,500 of the Camry (14.8%) went to fleet (which was down from the 56,800 (17.3%) in 2010 due to the tsunami and the launch of the new Camry – but still pretty high considering the factors.

          • 0 avatar
            goldtownpe

            So do you have 2013 YTD data to show that this year is much different than 2011 or are you just basing your claim on anecdotal evidence?

            What’s the Fusion rental %? What’s the Camry rental %? For 2013 YTD.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            It’s due to articles like this (from Auto News) which states:

            For now, the directive is to do whatever it takes. The Camry is less than two years into its model cycle, and already Toyota is piling on incentives and cutting fleet deals to stay ahead in the race.

            “We will do what is necessary to get the vehicle into the hands of new and loyal customers,” Toyota Division General Manager Bill Fay wrote in an e-mail. “Incentives on Camry will remain as competitive as they need to be.”

            The Camry is the only one of the four top-selling mid-sized sedans to receive increased incentive spending this year, although the other three were in sell-down mode at this time last year. Except for February, Toyota has dialed up incentive spending per unit on the Camry each month this year, up from $2,300 in January to $2,750 in May, according to TrueCar.

            Meanwhile, Toyota’s fleet deals are running ahead of the pace set last year, when Toyota made massive “make good” sales to fleet customers who had to wait out 2011′s tsunami-related shortages.

          • 0 avatar
            goldtownpe

            So…What’s the Fusion 2013 rental %? What’s the Camry 2013 rental %? Show me data that this year is any different than any other year. According to that Automotive News article, the Camry is expected to finished the year with no more than 15% fleet. That’s the same as 2011 and probably the same as 2012.

            Do you have the incentive spending data for June and July?

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      Really need to take a year’s data on fleet sales (Toyota tends to do most of its fleet sales in the 1st half of the year) and for specific models (since certain Toyota models are fleet heavy while others are not).

      In addition, one has to take into account the actual no. of a particular model going into fleet (since some brands sell a lot more than others).

      In TTAC’s article on the best selling sedans for 2010 and fleet sales -

      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/01/the-truth-about-the-ten-best-selling-sedans-of-2010/

      despite the Fusion and Impala having a higher fleet sales % than the Camry, the actual no. of cars which landed on fleet lots did not differ so much (since the Camry sold a lot more).

      Total no. to fleet – %

      Fusion – 68,364 – 31.20%
      Impala – 63,935 – 32.20%
      Camry – 56,799 – 17.30%

  • avatar
    Blackcloud_9

    Aren’t sales to rental companies regarded as fleet sales or are they tabulated separately? If Hertz buys 43 Sentras, (seems like the only car I ever get if I rent) isn’t that a fleet sale?

  • avatar
    Type57SC

    Hyundai is surprising, even with the strikes they are howling about being out of capacity to build. If so, why put so much into fleet?

    • 0 avatar
      carguy

      They are probably not pushing Elantra’s to fleet but their older and less popular models.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        Isn`t the Sonata also meant to be production constrained. Given that Elantra and Sonata are two of their biggest sellers what older cars do you think are going to fleets?

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          I believe that the name of the game for Hyundai is to put as many of their products before the public as they have capacity for.

          One way to do that is to stuff the fleet channel. People who end up getting one as a rental may like it well enough to choose to buy one for themselves the next time they go car buying.

          I was enormously impressed with the Sonatas I got as rentals, but I’m not in the market for a sedan.

          OTOH, I did help buy a brand new 2011 Elantra for my grand daughter because her choice coincided with MY approval of the Elantra because it offered so much more for the money than the competition did.

          • 0 avatar
            mike978

            HDC – I can see that as a business justification and it makes sense. However when reports come out (maybe in error) that they are selling all they can and are capacity constrained. Hence the reason their YTD sales lag the overall market, you have to question why they don`t cut back on fleet and increase on retail which is presumably more profitable. From this data it indicates that they cannot grow the retail business. 0% change in retail but >30% for fleet.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            mike978, I agree with your analysis completely. However, all manufacturers have to adapt to the constraints of the real world.

            But if a manufacturer cannot increase retail sales, isn’t the fleet alternative a viable one? It keeps the machinery going and the people productive.

            It’s exactly what the Detroit 3 did long before the foreigners and transplants became equally adapt at their game, and beat them on their own turf.

            As far as I know, Hyundai and the other transplants do not have Job Banks with idle workers to feed.

            Much of fleet sales will actually resurface in the form of used cars in the secondary market, thus creating an aftermarket for spare parts and service.

            I remember the hot secondary markets for Towncars, Caddies and other luxo-barges. There was a waiting line to buy those cheap. Ditto with all fleet trucks.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch1011

      “Hyundai is surprising, even with the strikes they are howling about being out of capacity to build.”

      Hyundai’s rhetoric doesn’t match the numbers. When there is a contradiction between rhetoric and data, then the problem is usually with the rhetoric.

      (In other words, Hyundai doesn’t want to admit that the company is losing ground this year, particularly with the Kia brand.)

    • 0 avatar
      Prado

      The hot new Sonata and Elantra from just a couple years ago is now just luke warm with plenty of inventory. The competition has caught up and passed them in many ways.

      • 0 avatar
        bd2

        Keep in mind that the Sonata is now the oldest sedan in the segment (minus the Chrysler 200).

        Here are the fleet sales % for July 2012

        68.0% – Mazda6
        58.7% – Dodge Avenger
        41.6% – Chrysler 200
        39.9% – Chevrolet Malibu
        37.9% – Ford Fusion
        33.0% – Nissan Altima
        23.2% – Toyota Camry
        20.4% – Volkswagen Passat
        10.8% – Hyundai Sonata
        -9.1% – Kia Optima
        -2.6% – Honda Accord

        Yes, fleet sales for the Sonata has gone up but that’s expected for an older model.

        And things will change as an all-new Sonata is due out sometime next year (restarting the cycle for Hyundai).

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          Nice work.

        • 0 avatar
          J.Emerson

          Bd, where do you get this stuff?

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            From various sites, but Automotive Fleet did a spreadsheet of fleet registrations for 2011.

            http://www.automotive-fleet.com/statistics/statsviewer.aspx?file=http%3a%2f%2fwww.automotive-fleet.com%2ffc_resources%2fstats%2fAFFB12-20-car-reg.pdf&channel=

        • 0 avatar
          84Cressida

          Oh okay, so its acceptable for Hyundai because the Sonata is old. But when Toyota’s were higher when the 2010 and 2011 Camry were still sold, it was clearly because the Camry was a huge steaming pile of cow dung and that Toyota is going down the tubes, right?

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            Well, Honda didn’t have to dump the previous Accord into rental fleet and the Accord was even older than the Camry at the time.

            That’s the thing – previously, Toyota was in the same boat as Honda, but now, with the Yaris, Corolla and Camry, Toyota is in the same boat as all the others (if not more so) – and in certain aspects (such as ATP), worse.

          • 0 avatar
            84Cressida

            Except they are not in the same boat as others, since their fleet sales still significantly trail those of the domestics, and Nissan. The Malibu and Fusion still have higher fleet sales and incentives of the Malibu are significantly higher and the so-called game changer Fusion is at the identical amount of incentives as the so called Soviet trailer Camry.

            The Cruze and Focus also still outrank the Corolla in fleet sales and the Corolla is freaking ancient compared to those two. GM even expects the new Impala to have 30% fleet sales. Toyota has a few months where the Camry fleet is 20% and all of a sudden there are articles labeling it a failure. Meanwhile, the new Impala has targets of 30% fleet and get applauded. Hil-Air-ee-us.

            As for Honda, they can lie all they want and say they don’t do fleet. I’ve driven rental car Accords and Civics. They aren’t mythical like unicorns.

        • 0 avatar
          goldtownpe

          How do you get negative percentage? Did some of the fleet sell some cars back to the manufacturers?

          Nice data set though. Do you have the YTD fleet numbers?

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            Don’t think those are negative percentages, but merely a place-holder.

            Don’t have the full 2012 nos. and have been looking for those myself.

    • 0 avatar
      84Cressida

      The Elantra is one of the biggest fleet queens of all this year, so is the Sonata and now the Sonata Hybrids are starting to become common place over at Enterprise. I should’ve taken a picture of all the Elantras lined up in a row at my local office a few weeks ago. bd2′s head would’ve gone awry.

      • 0 avatar
        bd2

        Maybe so, but still wouldn’t touch the Corolla when it comes to rental fleet sales (and besides, while fleet sales of the Elantra have increased, likely not as bad as you are making it out to be).

        Edmunds is reporting that the Corolla fleet sales % is running at 23% for the year.

  • avatar

    Here in Phoenix, I’m seeing a sudden rush of VW product as rentals…Jettas and Beetles.

  • avatar
    EspritdeFacelVega

    Fleet sales are primarily to rental fleets. Here in south FL you can see the changing mix away -slightly- from Detroit brands, although they remain well represented, esp. old-gen Impala, new Fusion (hmm…), Focus, omnipresent Avenger/200s and 300s. For the Asians, Altima, Sonata, Elantra and especially the decrepit Corolla dominate the charts.

    Not sure this is any real departure, though, from the past. For the Asian brands the fleets have been a good marketing tool (well, current Corolla aside). I bought a new 1994 Altima because I was so impressed with one I had as a rental in Vancouver in the summer of 93. I think Hyundai and Kia have won many converts from rentals, especially from those who might have had lingering doubts from the old days.

    Having said that, I think the Big 3 will benefit from paring down the fleet sales, esp. Chrysler and GM. Keeping the new Impala away from Hertz and Enterprise seems very wise.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      ‘Fleet sales are primarily to rental fleets’

      This is not correct. Ford, for example, breaks their fleet into daily rental/commercial/government. YTD Ford is 31% fleet overall.

      13% Daily Rental
      13% Commercial
      4% Government

      So, in Ford’s case, less than half of their fleet is Daily Rental.

      http://seekingalpha.com/article/1601662-ford-motor-companys-management-hosts-july-2013-u-s-sales-call-transcript?part=single

      • 0 avatar
        Truckducken

        No snark intended, but do you have comparable data for GM? This is interesting.

        • 0 avatar
          sunridge place

          About the only place I’ve seen it is in the monthly sales call transcripts and I don’t have time to dig through them all for a recent #.

          For 2012CY, GM was 25.9% fleet:
          16.6% daily rental
          6.3% commercial
          3% govt

          http://seekingalpha.com/article/1093681-general-motors-company-management-discusses-december-2012-u-s-vehicle-sales-transcript

      • 0 avatar
        Pch1011

        Fleet sales on the whole are dominated by rental. Per Automotive Fleet:

        CY 2011: 69% rental, 24% commercial, 7% government
        MY 2010: 68% rental, 23% commercial, 8% government
        MY 2009: 62% rental, 26% commercial, 12% government
        MY 2008: 65% rental, 27% commercial, 9% government

        During 2011, the Ford brand had 38% fleet sales; 53% of the fleet sales were rental. The Lincoln brand had 19% fleet sales; 78% of the fleet sales were rental.

        (My comments don’t appear to be showing up, so please fix this.)

        • 0 avatar
          Pch1011

          To append to the above, the Ford/Lincoln figures above are for passenger cars only (not light trucks, SUVs, etc.)

          Cars and trucks combined, Ford and Lincoln’s 2011 fleet sales were 48% rental, 39% commercial, 13% government. Fleet sales of large pickups tend to skew more heavily toward commercial, for obvious reasons.

        • 0 avatar
          sunridge place

          Two things:

          1. I didn’t write my original point very well. I meant to more clearly state that not every OEM runs that heavy into daily rental.

          2. Automotive Fleet apparently uses registration data. The OEMs are generally reporting by delivery type. In other words, a sale of a Honda at a Honda dealership to a rental company is probably considered retail by Honda but fleet by Automotive Fleet due to the registration. I also wonder what Automotive Fleet uses to determine a ‘commercial’ registration.

  • avatar
    Speed3

    Wow the most amazing statistic that jumps out is that 90% of Chrysler’s sales are retail. This is higher than and Hyundai-Kia! If I recall, wasn’t it pre-crisis/bankruptcy that for some models nearly 50% were fleet? That is an amazing turn-around.

    Considering that a year ago they were 82% retail, its hard to dismiss Chrysler’s improvement to fleet sales.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      Chrysler is 23% fleet YTD…an improvement for sure but this one month view is a bit skewed.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      Chrysler’s come a long way since 2009. The influence of Daimler’s design/engineering input and the prudent management of Sergio and the Fiat BoD are largely responsible for propelling Chrysler back from the dead.

      No doubt the UAW will seek recognition for Chrysler’s recent success and demand their pound of flesh for each unit sold.

  • avatar
    nine11c2

    Not a very fair report. “Meanwhile, sales to fleets were up 34% at Toyota, up 43% at Hyundai-Kia Automotive and a whopping 87 percent at Nissan’s North American operations.” Toyota had only 6,500 fleet sales in January 2012. its 34% jump was an increase of only 2,300 cars. It is still selling 20% of what Ford and GM are selling to Fleets..

  • avatar
    canddmeyer

    I can’t blame those buying non-Detroit fleet vehicles. Who wants a vehicle that has more down time?

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      Often, buying non-Detroit fleet vehicles costs a lot less than buying a GM, Ford or Chrysler fleet vehicle.

      The US government is forced to “Buy American” even if the units are made in Canada, Mexico or Turkey.

      Since the oproar of the Army buying Nissan products, I haven’t seen any foreign brand vehicles as part of the military or GSA fleet vehicles.

      But car rental agencies and other non-government fleet operators are free to choose whatever buys them the most for their money.

      • 0 avatar
        jpolicke

        I have seen quite a few Elantras with GSA tags.

        • 0 avatar

          Saw my first US Govt. Elantra last week.

          • 0 avatar
            jpolicke

            Looked weird seeing it for the first tie, didn’t it? Odd that, given the domestics are finally starting to put out some decent competitive product, now of all times they start buying foreign brands. When I think back on some of the crap they put into the fleet..stripped Celebrities with seats like picnic table benches, Corsicas, etc, I would have welcomed a first gen Sonata or Elantra.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Hey, if you guys can find out what the GSA Catalog number for those Elantras is, I will pass it along to a couple of friends of mine who can issue purchase orders for them.

            What we have here with GSA tags are a few Ford Transits, made in Turkey, and the rest is overwhelmingly Ford E-vans, some GM vans, lots of pickup trucks for the Missile Range, and oodles and oodles of Malibus.

          • 0 avatar
            jpolicke

            Here’s the latest list of what’s available: https://apps.fas.gsa.gov/vehicles/roads/autochoice/closeoutdate.cfm Unfortunately no catalog numbers. You might need an account and be logged into the ordering app to see that.

            I guess all the available Hyundai’s have been taken. Interesting that Fiat 500 made the list. And the Volt – nothing like being fashionable at taxpayer expense.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      It’s a dangerous game letting the Japanese have fleet volume. Once fleet operators get a taste for cars that shrug off abuse, they won’t want to give them up.

  • avatar
    200k-min

    If I own a small business and the business buys a vehicle is that considered a “fleet” sale? I know many people that don’t own a vehicle, their company does, but I’d hardly call it a fleet sale.

    To me a fleet sale is the plumbing co. that has 20 of the same van/truck all painted the same, optioned the same, etc. Rental car strippers eventually make their way into private ownership. Commercial vehicles, not so much.

    • 0 avatar
      Type57SC

      Generally 5 vehicles or more is called a fleet sale.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Depends on the manufacturer and dealer. With Ford if you have a business license you can go to the fleet dept and get their business direct pricing. It doesn’t matter if you are buying a Mustang or a F350 or if you want 1 or 100.

      Also at many dealers if you use programs such as the Costco auto program that is considered a “fleet” sale because it is handled by the fleet dept.

  • avatar
    romismak

    Those numbers are logical, i mean if US automakers are reducing their share of fleet sales, than those businnesses and rental companies would go after Toyota, Honda, Nissan and HK – biggest automakers out ther with every car they could possibly need, but why is HK so big in fleet sales? i don´t think they have big share in goverment purchases and can´t see them beeing much better in commercial companies purchases than japanese, so are they selling big numbers to rental companies? if so then why if they are already at full capacity and individual customers must wait – normal people.

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    I’m not trying to be negative here, but are we sure this is a good sign for the domestic brands? Or are they just losing out to the Asian makes that are able to offer more aggressive discounts to the fleet buyer?

  • avatar
    Joss

    Yeah but there’s a change in RENTAL fleet isn’t there? A move away from Avis/Hertz etc daily’s towards hourly Autoshare/Zipcar. And you know their hip customers aren’t into brand loyalty they want gadget assimilation. Wheels reserved by smart phone.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    I would love to see fleet data on the Prius – I see them as taxis in almost every city I go to now.

  • avatar
    billfrombuckhead

    There’s going to be more cars built just for rental/fleet use like the Chevy Captiva and old body style Impala. The Avenger will probably go that way as they wind that down in a year or two. This isn’t new Mazda did this the 80′s with the GLC, a truly nasty little rental car.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    Bah. Give me whatever when it’s on the company dime, a fast convertible for another beach vacation, and a pick up for going back to the family farm. Do the numbers mater? Not really; they get sold after X amount months/miles.

  • avatar

    Wonder if it’s a tax/accounting result.
    I seem to remember in the article on vans mentioning van sales were cratering this yr compared to last.
    If there was some tax incentive to unload inventory in 2012 that would have a marked impact on the US Big 3.
    (I know many folks were trying to get income crammed into 2012 to avoid what were thought to be the forthcoming Bush tax-cut rollbacks.) Perhaps the same applied to larger companies,renew their fleets when they had the cash in 2012 and possibly earn depreciation and/or investment credits since they anticipated higher taxes in 2013,leaving less cash for purchasing?
    Note,I’m obviously not a tax specialist,so those who are may either correct me,agree or point out I’m almost correct,but not really :)


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