By on September 23, 2015

Der neue Volkswagen Passat (USA Version)

The year was 2012, and everything was going according to plan at Volkswagen of America.

After years of languishing as an also-ran in the midsize car category, U.S. sales of the Volkswagen Passat rose to their highest level ever. After generating just 8 percent of VW USA’s volume between 2008 and 2011, the Passat was responsible for more than one quarter of Volkswagen’s volume in 2012. (Read More…)

By on September 17, 2015

USA subcompact SUV sales chart August 2015

Led by the Subaru XV Crosstrek and Jeep Renegade, U.S. sales of subcompact crossovers jumped 104 percent to nearly 43,000 units in August 2015, a year-over-year gain of 22,000 sales. August marked the second consecutive month in which segment-wide sales more than doubled.

The addition of new candidates certainly provides a massive boost to the nascent category, but most established players produced gains last month, as well. The subcompact CUVs which were on sale a year ago combined for a 7-percent increase in August and a 7-percent increase through the first eight months of 2015.

But five new competitors, including three of the segment’s five top sellers in August, produced 48 percent of all subcompact crossover sales in the United States last month. (Read More…)

By on September 15, 2015

2015 Dodge Charger V6

Only weeks after TTAC’s managing editor publicly declared his yearning for a V8-powered Dodge Charger, I was driving the same V6-powered Charger that got Mr. Stevenson’s motor running.

His response, the response of a young man whose lifestyle necessitates no firm requirements from his transportation device: I want this car.

My response, the response of a slightly more aged man whose lifestyle necessitates the frequent carriage of strollers, the frequent installation of a Diono Radian RXT, and the frequent responsibility of ferrying lanky individuals in the rear seat: Big family cars ain’t what they used to be. (Read More…)

By on September 14, 2015

porsche scion

Only seven years removed from selling more than 100,000 cars in the United States, Scion’s current woes are more easily understood by looking at the brands which now outsell Toyota’s “youth” brand.

One such Scion-besting automaker: Porsche.

Rewind just one year and Scion, through the first eight months of 2014, was outselling Porsche by 10,000 units. Yet in the first eight months of 2015, Scion only outsold Porsche three times — in February, March, and May — and trails Porsche by nearly 2,200 sales heading into September.

Porsche is certainly not a Scion rival. Even the FR-S, Scion’s most costly car, costs only half as much as Porsche’s least expensive car, a basic, un-optioned Boxster. (Is there even such a thing?)

But the change in order speaks volumes about Porsche’s steady climb to record highs and the fall of Scion, the latter of which saw its share of the U.S. market fall by 73 percent, from 1.04 percent in 2006 to 0.28 percent in 2015. (Read More…)

By on September 8, 2015

2016 Cadillac ELR red

As the U.S. auto industry technically lost a small amount of new vehicle sales volume in August 2015, sales of the unappealing Cadillac ELR plunged 77 percent to the car’s lowest monthly total yet.

In fact, August 2015’s collapse of the Volt-based ELR’s sales comes precisely one year after the ELR reached its best-ever monthly volume.

196 ELRs were sold in America in August 2014, a figure which decreased by 85 units the very next month and by 151 units a year later. (Read More…)

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