Passenger car sales in the United States are up just 1% as the overall industry has grown more than 5% through the first eleven months of 2014. America’s two best-selling premium brands, however, are enjoying more encouraging passenger car numbers in 2014. Quickly decreasing fuel prices are not, as of yet, slowing car volume at BMW in the least. (Read More…)
Is your wallet feeling heavier these days, despite all of the blackened Thanksgivings and cybernetic Mondays meant to liberate you from your money? It’s about to become more so, thanks to an early Christmas present from OPEC.
As Venezuela faces an economic crisis that is depleting government coffers, President Nicolas Maduro is threatening to end something many citizens of that oil producing country consider to be their patrimony, incredibly cheap gasoline, the equivalent of 5 U.S. cents per gallon. That price hasn’t changed in almost two decades. In 1989 the price of gasoline was raised, prompting deadly rioting that went on for days and killed over 300 people. To keep the retail price that low, the government subsidizes gasoline to the tune of more than $12.5 billion a year. The result is that Venezuelans aren’t interested in small, clean, fuel efficient cars. Big old sedans, 1970s era trucks and newer SUVs dominate Venuzuelan roads, compounding both the amount of subsidies needed and the smog over Caracas. (Read More…)
Rising prices at the pump make people do dumb things. Some buy a new car to save at all costs. Not only will they never recoup the cost of the new car, the tsunami in Japan turned fuel efficient Japanese cars into everything else than a bargain. Others do something particularly stupid: They drive their car until it runs out of gas. (Read More…)
We love us some data here at TTAC, and since we’re already looking at a grip of sales data today, we thought we’d add this excellent infographic that appeared in Sunday’s New York Times to the mix. It depicts America’s per-capita miles driven on the x-axis, and the price of gasoline on the y-axis, and shows that the two aren’t as inextricably linked as some might have thought. As we try to make sense of monthly sales data and look for “the new normal,” this kind of data provides a crucial context for month-by-month trends. We hope you find it as enjoyable and illuminating as we did.