By on July 26, 2012

Countering talk of an impending end to the new car party, augurs predict that July will be seasonally hot. TrueCar says that this July could be the best since the heydays of 2007. TrueCar, which bases its projections on real time transactions from its associated dealers, thinks that July sales could reach 1.17 million, up 10.6 percent from July 2011. Edmunds also sees 1.17 million new cars in its crystal ball.  Kelley Blue Book basically agrees with 1.16 million on its tip sheet.

TrueCar Forecast Edmunds Forecast Kelley Forecast Consensus Forecast
Manufacturer July ’12 YoY July ’12 YoY July ’12 YoY July ’12 YoY
Chrysler 131,668 17.5% 131,668 9.2% 129,900 16.0% 131,079 14.2%
Ford 178,345 -1.1% 175,791 -2.5% 179,800 -0.3% 177,979 -1.3%
GM 215,520 0.3% 214,315 -0.3% 218,100 1.5% 215,978 0.5%
Honda 116,470 44.7% 123,668 53.6% 111,350 38.3% 117,163 45.5%
Hyundai/Kia 111,159 5.8% n/a n/a 106,700 1.6% 108,930 3.7%
Nissan 95,187 12.5% 98,216 16.1% 93,950 11.1% 95,784 13.2%
Toyota 159,174 21.7% 169,617 29.7% 168,200 28.6% 165,664 26.7%
Volkswagen 49,831 30.4% n/a n/a 46,400 21.0% 48,116 25.7%
Industry 1,171,201 10.6% 1,166,665 10.2% 1,160,000 9.5% 1,165,955 10.1%

TrueCar thinks the Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Rate (“SAAR”) will be around 14.1 million new car sales, up from 12.2 million in July 2011. That’s the good news.

The bad news are that retail sales are expected to be up an anemic 3 percent only. Most of the growth is expected in Fleet sales which are thought to account for 21 percent of total industry sales in July 2012.

More not quite good news could be in stock for Ford and GM. The big July bonanza will pass them by, TrueCar expects. Says  Jesse Toprak, Vice President of Market Intelligence for

“The Japanese Big 3, as well as Chrysler, will all be posting double-digit gains while Ford and GM will essentially be flat. One look at the Toyota and Honda sales today will make you think as if nothing ever happened last year.”

Edmunds even has slight decreases in the boxes of Ford and GM. But then, fleet sales could change that.


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42 Comments on “Sales Oracles Think July Will Be Hot...”

  • avatar

    Not surprised Toyota and Honda continue to post large gains based upon their low sales last year due to the natural disasters. Just as Ford and GM gained some “extra” sales this time last year due to hose disasters and are basically just hanging onto them. We aren`t going to get to some equilibrium period until later this year when we can truly tell what is happening YoY.

  • avatar

    can someone please tell me what is driving chrysler sales? is the 500 really creating double digit increases in volume?

    • 0 avatar

      The 500 is relatively low volume with 4-5K a month (compared to Jeep alone which is around 40K units). The new Dart is available and should have outsold the Caliber from last year so adding volume. They may have also increased fleet sales. Their incentives on the 200 are eye-popping ($3000 off, plus down to invoice pricing means you can get one for <$20K)

    • 0 avatar

      People want Jeeps. Lots of them. It would be impossible to overstate how hot the Grand Cherokee continues to be, and the Wrangler is stronger than ever.

      • 0 avatar

        I know three other people besides myself who bought a version of the 2012 Grand Cherokee. Each one is a different version from the others but they all share one commonality – they’re the best Grand Cherokee Jeep has ever made.

        And I was not the first one to buy a 2012 Grand Cherokee here. That distinction goes to my old retired-Air Force buddy in a nearby town. My wife fell in love with that Grand Cherokee and had to have one too.

        It may be a chic car but men can appreciate the 5.7 and 6.4-liter versions. They haul!!!

        And the Wrangler with the Pentastar V6 is just as hot a seller. Bought one for my grandson in the Air Force last month. Off-road lust! And then some.

      • 0 avatar

        I like the looks of the Jeep Grand Cheorkee. On the east coast, it seems to be one of the few decent sellers from Detroit. I hope Jeep is able to get the moose problem fixed.

      • 0 avatar

        Jimmyy, yeah, the Moose test is a bad thing for the GC and mouthing back at the testers is a whack thing to do. That’s like @!#$%^&*! off Bertel, for Pete’s sake, and getting banned from ttac.

        And quite frankly, I have driven my wife GC and I have turned off the stability control at 40mph on US54. And it gets scary just changing lanes rapidly!!! At 65 it gets dicey, so I didn’t try it at 75mph.

        I didn’t lift any wheels but that’s only because I didn’t push all that weight outside of the normal handling envelope governed by the laws of physics in regards to that much top heavy bloat of the GC.

        An SRT8 it’s not. I urge Fiat to get with the program and rewrite the software to kick the brakes in sooner to avoid shifting that much weight to cause a tire to blow.

        It’s got to be the stability control that is too slow to react in relation to the suspension components on every version, save the SRT8.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    If 2007 was a boom year, shouldn’t there be a boom 5-6 years later? Car paid off, it’s getting kinda old, I think that new shiny thing is pretty cool boom?
    Yes, I know a lot on here would say: I didn’t trade her in until I had to go to the dealer to buy new planetary gears.
    I don’t have the location, time, or knowledge to do serious repairs on my car. It has to start and run everyday.

    • 0 avatar

      “I don’t have the location, time, or knowledge to do serious repairs on my car. It has to start and run everyday.”

      In 30 years, I have had a car in a shop for 2 days twice and those days were back in the 80s. I don’t count auto body repair.

      If I have to have a tune-up, starter, shocks, bushings, whatever… leave it in the morning, pick it up at 5. I can live with 2 – 2 day repairs in 30 years and 620,000 miles.

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        Congrats on your good luck. Lemme see, CV joints, water pumps, clutch cables, alternators, clutches themselves, and thermostats. I even had a starter catch on fire on a Prelude. The new starter had to be shipped from Japan.

  • avatar
    Felix Hoenikker

    Ignoring the depressed Japanese car sales due to the natural disasters last year, what does the five year averaged sales rates tell us?
    I would guess that the high yen combined with the rapacious business practices of the Japanese dealers would show a slow but inexorable rise in the volume of the big 2 1/2 even though I have no love for them.
    For now, they seem to be the lesser of two evils.

    • 0 avatar

      I am confused – who are Japanese dealers? You mean American dealers selling Toyota/Honda, etc?

      In that case, what you are seeing is that Ford/GM are losing sales they gained through natural disasters last year. If they are flat at 0%, and market is up 3%, they are losing share.

      And thats with new Corolla, Rav4 and Accord coming. 2013 will be a tough year for Big 2.

      • 0 avatar

        spw – I agree with you that they are losing share from 2011. They artificially gained share as Toyota went from something like 15% down to 10% and is now getting back to 15%. So GM, Ford and it looks like maybe Hyundai/Kia are giving up some/most of that gain. So compare to 2010 and they are flat.
        You are right that 2013 sees new Japanese product but it also sees a new Silverado, CTS, Tahoe so new product is not one sided. All good for the customer.

      • 0 avatar

        Yeah, but difference is that Tahoe and Silverado never lost market share to Japanese, so they are fighting Ford/Chrysler products, while Corolla/Rav4/Accord are going directly after Big 2 competition, which will then lead to tougher year for Ford/GM/Chrysler.

        In the end, it is all the best for the customers.

  • avatar

    The current level of car sales is a recession number. 14M is low. 17M to 18M sales are considered good times. In my opinion, the left wing media tries to overstate the strength of Detroit auto companies because they are trying to justify the many 10s of billions of dollars that have been dumped into the GM, Ford, Chrysler, and the suppliers. The left wing media does this as a favor to the Obama campaign. If America only knew about the many billions that went into UAW funds …

    And, once again, Detroit is losing market share to foreign nameplates.

    Detroit is fortunate that:

    1) Large fleet sales to government organizations at inflated prices help the top and bottom line.
    2) Old people are brand loyal to Detroit. Old people will continue to buy GM, Ford, and Chrysler even though they score well below Toyota an Honda in reliability … see Consumer Reports and J. D. Powers.

    Wall Street has in issue with Ford. Ford closed down today, even in a strongly up market. Furthermore, TM and HMC stocks have outperformed GM and F over the last year. Clearly, Wall Street analysts know that TM and HMC are in a better place than GM and F.

    • 0 avatar

      Amen to that Jimmyy!

      But brace yourself for attacks from the Buy American fan club.

      One exception. I’m one of the old people you refer to and I did buy a UAW-built 2012 Grand Cherokee imported from Detroit last November, but only after comparing the others in that class; not because of some misplaced loyalty to the Big 3.

      I always found that Chrysler of the past made crap cars and even crappier trucks. Okay, so what changed?

      Whatever changed proved me wrong and that Grand Cherokee I bought for my wife is the best one we’ve ever owned. I hope it will be as good as her 2008 Highlander still is after 85K+ trouble-free miles.

    • 0 avatar

      “Old people will continue to buy GM, Ford, and Chrysler”

      FWIW, most Baby Boomers are over 50, and are not the previous “Rolling Lazy Boy/column shift/ bench seat” car buyers. What year do you think this is, 1989? Go to Sun City AZ and count all the Camrys, Avalons, Accords, Sonatas,…

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        I love the 4th of every month, Social Security Check Day, when the geezers of the low n slow Toyota squadron go on patrol. I see lots of elderly people in Toyota products.

      • 0 avatar

        el scotto, the Social Security Administration has found a way to save money: stop mailing checks and force retirees to accept direct deposit. They apparently stagger them too – my aunt gets hers deposited around the 20th of the month to her checking account.

      • 0 avatar

        Lorenzo, the SSA has even fine-tuned that system of direct deposit. I get my soc sec check on the third Wednesday of each month, and my wife gets hers on the second Wednesday of each month, and it is usually there a day early, like by 3pm Tuesday.

        Oh, and Chicagoland is right, but you don’t have to go to Sun City to see old people driving “the Camrys, Avalons, Accords, Sonatas,…” Just about any retirement community in any state has an overwhelming number of foreign brands displacing the domestic luxury brands.

        And for the well-heeled retired folks, the Lexus, M-B, Jaguar, Land Rover and larger BMWs seem to have displaced the Cadillacs and Lincolns.

        I saw an ad today for a lease on a 2012 MKZ for 0-0-0 and $379 per month. That is dirt cheap! I wonder how many people will bite.

    • 0 avatar

      “17M to 18M sales are considered good times.”

      In the history of the United States, the SAAR has exceeded 17 million only twice (2000 and 2001), and has never been as high as 18 million.

      I know that some of you guys just like to make stuff up, but still…

      • 0 avatar

        So you’re saying he’s right?

        17-18 million vehicle sales in a year is considered “good times”.

        It doesn’t sound like he’s making anything up to me, sounds you just like to be “that guy” that gets a kick out of of pouncing on trivial details so you can correct them.

      • 0 avatar

        “So you’re saying he’s right?”

        This is meant to be a joke, right?

      • 0 avatar

        If one takes out the effects of purchasing beyond one’s means with borrowed $$, the SAAR should be lower than 17/18M/yr and isn’t that what we should all want to not make the same mistakes of the past?

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      The GSA buys vehicles at discounted prices, not inflated ones. As base models improved so did GSA vehicles. In days of yore GSA vehicles were a reverse Top Gun; the worst of the worst.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      Jimmy…please explain this:

      1 year difference between Chevy/Toyota/Honda. Chevy equal to Hyundai.

      Buick going down while the industry going up.

      Cadillac…well…still Cadillac…but I’ll bet the ATS brings that number down some.

  • avatar

    Whomever decided to use the picture of Explorers must not know that they are the older style. The pic could be from 2006. How about a picture of new 2012 cars?

  • avatar

    @highdesertcat…Great choice, with the Grand Cherokee. The Jeep is the only true “smaller” SUV on the market today.

    @ jimmyy, or whatever your going by now. The only thing your beloved “Honda” did right,was not playing the truck game like Toyota did.

    Hows them “Tundra” sales doing these days?

    • 0 avatar
      01 ZX3

      Tundra sales have always been bad as have the sales of the lame, craptastic Ridgeline.

    • 0 avatar

      mikey, I was never a fan of Chrysler products. Got my start on them rebuilding my dad’s Mopar (Plymouth and Dodge) dragsters and 426 Hemis way back in the 60’s when I was a kid.

      I owned a number of Jeep products, including the worst from AMC, but this new Grand Cherokee really cuts the cake. My wife is tickled pink with hers. It’s luxurious and rides well.

      Dare I say it? It is as good as, if not better than, her 2008 Highlander. But I do remind her of the Moose lurking out there almost daily.

      A few weeks ago, before the TV Moose test was released, she told me that she went around a curve where US70 accesses the I-25 South and she got a wake up call when her GC became unstable. I reminded her the speed limit in that curve was 35 not 45. I’m sure she white-knuckled it that time.

      I’m equally sure she will now slow down for curves. I don’t know what happened but I surmise that the Stabilitrac started activating the four calipers at the corners, and it must have felt really weird.

      I tried to duplicate it on US54 by rapidly switching lanes at 40mph with the stability control turned off, and that buggy felt as loose as a long-necked goose.

      All that rocking and rolling would make me seasick. Once you turn on the stability control everything is civilized again. So, yeah, Fiat needs to tweak the stability control to keep the thing from tipping.

    • 0 avatar

      Toyota’s problem trying to play the truck game is the same as Nissan’s – they both released competent products, and then let them rot on the vine.

      The Tundra hasn’t had a significant update since its ’07 release, and the Titan hasn’t had a significant update since it was introduced in ’04.

      For 2011 –
      F-Series: 584,917
      Combined Silverado/Sierra: 564,300
      Dodge Ram: 244,763
      Toyota Tundra: 82,908
      Nissan Titan: 21,994

      Toyota sold nearly 200,000 Tundras in ’07. Corolla buyers apparently don’t seem to care that the vehicle is extremely outdated, truck buyers, not so much.

      • 0 avatar

        Nullo, you’re probably right in your premise and assumption, but maybe Toyota and Nissan wanted to have a truck available for those individuals who chose not to buy a domestic. It happens.

        I know several people, some even working men who use their trucks for their work, who have chosen to buy a Tundra. Others bought a Titan, mostly older guys who wanted something unique.

        One of my neighbors traded TWO RAM trucks in on a 2010 Tundra. I sold both my ’88 Silverado and 2006 F150 after buying my 2011 Tundra.

        Is it outdated when compared to the current F150? Yeah, maybe. But I wouldn’t trade if off unless there was something better out there.

        I’m not into EcoBoost or V6s, so that’s no sale there. But when I trade off my 2011 Tundra in 2016, I’ll look around at what’s out there. And if there is something better than my current Tundra, I’ll buy it, regardless of brand or who makes it.

      • 0 avatar

        HDC – I agree some people want a “foreign” truck, I was just struck by 1.3 million “US” trucks and only 100,000 “Japanese” trucks. 13:1 is some ratio.

        I am surprised Toyota hasn`t worked harder on the Tundra if it is true not much has changed since 2007 (though the Silverado hasn`t changed much either has it in that time). I recall Toyota setting the goal to sell, routinely, 200,000 Tundra’s and fully utilize their new Texas facility. Looks like they failed in that. Should someone write an article complaining about them missing their sales targets repeatedly?

      • 0 avatar

        Large trucks yes… Midsize is ruled by Toyota Tacoma.

      • 0 avatar

        Mike978, there are probably several reasons why Tundras don’t sell well except to their own fan boys.

        IMO, the biggest reason is that any Tundra is so damn expensive! I paid over $5K more for my 2011 5.7 than I could get a Silverado or an F150 for, similarly equipped, at that time. And my Tundra has hardly anything on it except for the SR5 package.

        But when it comes to the compact trucks, it is like spw stated, the Tacoma is the undisputed champion of the sales world in North America.

        And Toyota hasn’t done much to either of their trucks to upgrade them or make them slicker. My guess would be that their philosophy is that they don’t mess with a good thing as long as people keep on buying them.

        There are no threats, real or perceived, for the Tacoma. And the people who buy Tundra know what they want, and are willing to pay extra for the privilege of buying one. What other reasons can motivate a buyer when it comes to buying a Toyota truck?

        Maybe Toyota just wants to take a portion of the sales that would normally have gone to Ford, GM or Dodge. No matter how few sold, each Tundra or Titan sale is one less for the domestics.

        And as long as the current owners of those Tundras and Titans are happy campers, it is unlikely that they will leave the fold and migrate back to the domestic brands.

        I’m certainly not going back unless a domestic manufacturer can improve on what I own now. When it comes time to trade in 2016, I’ll check them all out.

        But I won’t buy an aluminum-bodied F150, for instance. I prefer steel and I don’t care about the cost of gasoline or mpg. To me gasoline is a bargain at any price because it beats walking.

    • 0 avatar

      “I paid over $5K more for my 2011 5.7 than I could get a Silverado or an F150 for, similarly equipped, at that time. And my Tundra has hardly anything on it except for the SR5 package.”

      You just described every Toyota buyer out there.

      • 0 avatar

        alluster, that is true. And while each buyer has their own reason(s) for doing so, the bottom line is that they did it, still do it today and will continue to do it as long as Tundras are available.

        Every one of those sales of a Tundra (or a Titan) means one less sale for the domestic brands.

        Yeah, the numbers of Tundra and Titan sold are pitifully small, but over time they do add up. Had Tundra and Titan not been available, those same sales would have gone to the domestic manufacturers like they did before Tundra and Titan existed.

  • avatar

    Here is an interesting article from AutoMD which states that the vast majority of car owners are not planning on replacing their cars anytime too soon. Bodes well for parts companies but not the car manufacturers.

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