Chart Of The Day: Trucks Are Back, Baby

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer
chart of the day trucks are back baby

Earlier this year we took a look at our rolling 12-month sales totals chart, and found that cars had pulled away from “light trucks” (a category that includes trucks, SUVs, minivans and crossovers), prompting us to proclaim The Great American Downsizing. Well, it turns out we opined too soon. Trucks closed out the Summer strong and went on a tear during the Autumn months, to pull back to parity with their car cousins. And because light trucks are trending upwards faster than cars, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them finish the year as the better-selling segment. Of course, these numbers aren’t being driven strictly by the old-school utes of yore, although old standbys like the full-sized pickups, the Yukon XL and Ford Expedition are all up by healthy margins. Between old-school utes and the large crossovers that are replacing them, the cars just don’t stand a chance. Hit the jump for car-versus-light truck sales by manufacturer.

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  • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Dec 08, 2010

    Depends on how wealthy your zip code is. Around here (down south) some people are on the financial edge already and $3 gasoline looks pretty tough. People choosing to drive their more efficient car to the store or to work. My coworker making $25K a year is leaving his big truck at home and driving the family Escort instead (despite the beating his ego takes). Lasting $3.50+ would likely drive these folks backwards to four cylinder Rangers from V-8 half-ton trucks.

  • D002 D002 on Dec 09, 2010

    But what proportion is 4 cylinder "trucks" ? Once the world economy stops crashing, the oil price will head back up to $100 a barrel - and the US dollar will fall as the markets look for better, riskier returns. So the US automakers could m,ake the same mistake again.

  • Slance66 Slance66 on Dec 09, 2010

    I kicked myself back in 2008. Beautiful Volvo XC90 V8, low miles, loaded, for some $20k. 6-9 months later the same car was going for $29k. Should have ignored the gas prices and bought it. I ended up paying full freight for an RX350 later. The Volvo V8s were going for less than the turbo 5s. That said, gas prices are up again. Oil is close to $90 a barrel again. So much of the prior increase was driven by exchange rate issues, that may be occurring again. Internationally, Oil is priced in dollars. So the current weak dollar monetary policy, designed to encourage exports, has driven up US oil prices. So I don't think this uptick will last as long as in 07-08. This isn't supply driven, and this monetary policy is receiving strong criticism.

  • IGB IGB on Dec 09, 2010

    Truck sales are 1994 levels. Wow! Car sales are still nowhere. Who are buying trucks? I'm pretty sure it's not the homebuilders.