Ford Sales Drop 32 Percent In December
Or, as the FoMoCo PR types put it, “F-Series Drives Ford To Higher Market Share For Third Straight Month.” And, to be fair, this is the first time since 2001 that the company’s Fourth Quarter market share was higher than a year ago. As usual though, the real story comes in the final sentence of Ford’s press release, which reveals that “for the full year of 2008, Ford, Lincoln and Mercury’s market share is estimated at 14.2 percent, down 0.4 points versus a year ago.” On the bright side though, “this marks the company’s smallest decline in market share this decade.” Party!
By brand, Volvo is down the most, posting a 47 percent drop, with Ford and Mercury posting drops in the 30 percent range and Lincoln finishing strong with only a ten percent drop. SUVs are down over 50 percent for the Ford, Mercury and Lincoln brands, with other vehicle categories down about 30 percent.
Individual model sales reveal a few interesting points. The Taurus sold only 453 more units than did the venerable Crown Victoria. Mustang was down over 50 percent this December, selling only 4,027 units. Edge (5,937) is down 56.7 percent, selling at nearly half the rate of the Escape (10,967) and twice that of the Flex (2,685). Taurus X dove over 79 percent, moving only 971 vehicles. Fusion and Focus fell more softly, selling 10,274 and 11,671 units respectively. Expedition and Explorer sales were cut in half compared to last December, although Ford did sell 41,580 F-series trucks, down only 24.5 percent from last year.
Lincoln’s numbers are more than a bit misleading. Navigator and Mark LT lead the losses with roughly 50 percent losses, while MKX dropped 45.2 percent and MKZ dropped 34.2 percent. But Lincoln’s “only” ten percent drop as a brand since last year is the result of the new MKS, and a mysterious 605 percent increase in Town Car sales. Ford doesn’t even tout this Lazarus act in its PR copy, only noting that “fleet sales were down 42 percent (including a 57 percent decline in daily rental sales), consistent with Ford’s plans.”
On planet Mercury, the Mariner is up 41 percent, but overall sales are down 29.8 percent. Can you even name all the Mercury models which dragged that number down? We doubt it.
Volvo’s S80 is up 30 percent and C30 is down only ten percent, but S60 (-81.9 percent), S40 (-62.7 percent) and XC90 (-50.9 percent) drag overall Volvo sales to under 5k units, a 47 percent loss. That can’t go on for much longer.
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