Midsize Pickup Trucks Jump 29% In July 2016 As Full-Size Pickup Sales Level Off

Timothy Cain
by Timothy Cain

Midsize pickup truck sales shot up 29 percent in the United States in July 2016, enough to drive the sub-sector’s share of the overall pickup category up three points to 17 percent.

Indeed, without the gains produced by the midsize truck sector, overall U.S. pickup truck volume would have flatlined in July on declining sales of the two top-selling truck lines, Ford’s F-Series and the Chevrolet Silverado. Moreover, without the midsize truck sector’s additional 8,973 July sales, total U.S. new vehicle sales volume would have risen by less than one-tenth of one percent.

Instead, because of a dramatic increase in sales of the second-generation Honda Ridgeline in its first month of availability, another huge uptick in Nissan Frontier sales, and continued growth from GM’s Colorado/Canyon duo, pickup truck sales grew four percent and the American auto industry reported nearly 10,000 extra sales in July 2016, year-over-year.

In June, Honda reported the best month of Ridgeline sales in America since August 2008. Still suffering from limited availability in July, Ridgeline volume nevertheless grew 42 percent (compared with June; 58,533 percent compared with July 2015) to 3,518 units, the best month of Ridgeline sales since April 2008.

The Ridgeline’s July 2016 total was only 14 units shy of the GMC Canyon’s total in the second-generation Canyon’s best month since the nameplate returned in the fourth-quarter of 2014. For the Canyon’s Chevrolet Colorado twin, July marked the fifth consecutive month with more than 9,000 sales. GM is on track to sell approximately 140,000 midsize pickups in the United States in 2016.

Nissan, which is on track for its best year of Frontier sales since 2001, reported 7,244 sales of its midsize pickup truck in July, a sharp 3,050-unit year-over-year improvement.

Toyota, despite a three percent year-over-year downturn, still earned top honors in the category and claimed 41 percent market share.

Through the first seven months of 2016, total U.S. midsize pickup volume is up 19 percent, with the Toyota claiming 44 percent of the 251,178 sales produced by five nameplates.

Midsize pickups are back. Mostly. Sort of.

Rewind to the first seven months of 2006, and with a bundle of other contenders, Americans had acquired 368,000 small/midsize pickups, a 13-percent year-over-year drop. The Toyota Tacoma, with fewer sales in that seven-month stretch than this year, owned 28 percent of the segment.

Timothy Cain is the founder of GoodCarBadCar.net, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.

Timothy Cain
Timothy Cain

More by Timothy Cain

Join the conversation
2 of 79 comments
  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Aug 08, 2016

    I'd love to see an aluminum Ranger for the USA......... If for no other reason than to watch someone's head explode.

  • Jeff S Jeff S on Aug 08, 2016

    You might get your wish, but I think that the Ranger will start out similar to the Global Ranger and if not eventually all aluminum it could use aluminum, plastics, and carbon fiber along with light weight high tensile steel. Most vehicles will be subject to the higher fuel standards which means reducing weight. A Global Ranger would be a good addition to the North American market. Lou, I don't know if you have it in Canada, but there is a new series on TV for the Summer called Brain Dead where bugs from outer space crawl up in people's ears and destroy their brains. Eventually the infected have their heads explode. It takes place in Washington DC and it is a satire. Makes you wonder if something like that is in the brains of many of our politicians. Maybe Donald Trump's brain has been infected with these bugs.

  • Michael S6 Took my car for oil change on Friday and dealership was working on paper. Recently one of the major health care system in our area was hacked and they had to use paper backup for three weeks. What a nightmare.
  • 3SpeedAutomatic Once e-mail was adopted by my former employer, we were coached about malice software as early as the 90's. We called it "worms" back then.They were separating the computers that ran the power plants from the rest of the system in the early 00's. One plant supervisor loaded vacation pictures from a thumb drive on his work PC. His PC was immediately isolated and the supervisor in question was made an example of via a disciplinary notice. Word spread quickly!!Last I heard, they still had their own data center!! Cloud Computing, what's that?!?! 🚗🚗🚗
  • 3SpeedAutomatic At this time, GM had a "Me Too" attitude towards engine development:[list][*]the Euro luxury brands have diesels, so can we via an Olds V8[/*][*]variable value timing, welcome to the brave new world of Cadillac V8-6-4[/*][*]an aluminum block V8 engine via the HT4100, the go-go 80's[/*][*]double overhead cams, 4 valves per cylinder, no sweat, just like the Asian brands via NorthStar. [/*][/list]When you mindset is iron block and cast iron heads, life if easy. However, each time, GM failed to understand the nuances; intricate differences; and technical difficulty in each new engine program. Each time, GM came away with egg on its face and its reputation in ruin.If you look today, the engines in most Cadillacs are the same as in many Chevrolets. 🚗🚗🚗
  • 3-On-The-Tree I don’t think Toyotas going down.
  • ToolGuy Random thoughts (bulleted list because it should work on this page):• Carlos Tavares is a very smart individual.• I get the sense that the western hemisphere portion of Stellantis was even more messed up than he originally believed (I have no data), which is why the plan (old plan, original plan) has taken longer than expected (longer than I expected).• All the OEMs who have taken a serious look at what is happening with EVs in China have had to take a step back and reassess (oversimplification: they were thinking mostly business-as-usual with some tweaks here and there, and now realize they have bigger issues, much bigger, really big).• You (dear TTAC reader) aren't ready to hear this yet, but the EV thing is a tsunami (the thing has already done the thing, just hasn't reached you yet). I hesitate to even tell you, but it is the truth.