By on January 8, 2015

2014-Lada-Granta-672x410

Since the first Ladas left the assembly line in the 1970s, the automaker has always held the top spot on the sales podium, month after month, year after year. Until November 2014, that is.

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By on January 5, 2015

BMW i8

With fuel prices continuing their downward spiral, one would think EVs and hybrids would become the new Hummers and Escalades to be left to rust in the backlot of the dealership. Not quite.

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By on December 30, 2014

ford explorer police interceptor utilityAs the Explorer goes, so goes the Ford Police Interceptor Utility. Unfortunately for Ford, as the Taurus goes, so too goes the Police Interceptor Sedan.

Sales of civilian Explorers in the United States are up 6% through the first eleven months of 2014. Ford sold 14,949 Explorers in November, a 13% improvement. In addition to those Explorers, Ford sold 18,823 Explorer-based Police Interceptor Utilities between January and November of this year, a 47% increase compared with 2013’s first eleven months. The Police Interceptor Utility went on sale in March 2012. Its best month so far was May of this year, when 2277 were sold, a 98% jump from May 2013 and a 196% improvement compared with May 2012. (Read More…)

By on December 28, 2014

2016 audi q7Sales of the Audi Q7 in 2014 rose to a seven-year high in the United States. That’s a meaningful bit of information right there, given that the Q7 at your local Audi dealer now is basically the Q7 that first arrived at your local Audi dealer in 2006.

North of the border, Canadians registered more new Q7s in the first eleven months of 2014 than in any previous full calendar year. Q7 sales in both Canada and the United States have increased in each of the last five years.

It’s by no means the highest-volume player in the luxury SUV world, not in 2007 when U.S. Q7 volume peaked at 20,695 units; not in 2014 when the Q7 is outsold by low-volume premium brand utility vehicles like the BMW X1, Lexus GX460, and Volvo XC60. (Would the Q7 sell more often if Audi added the letter X to its badge? Probably not. Maybe. Definitely.) (Read More…)

By on December 27, 2014

nissan titan u.s. full-size trucksNissan USA announced on December 16, 2014, that the next Titan, the second Titan, the first all-new Titan since 2003, will be introduced at 2015’s NAIAS in Detroit on January 12, 2015.

Hardly altered since the production truck arrived for the 2004 model year, the Titan is now somewhat embarrassing. Yet while the truck never had the potential to tackle full-size pickup trucks from Ford, General Motors, and Ram – Toyota can’t either – in the same way Nissan’s Altima can outsell their midsize sedans and Nissan’s Versa their subcompacts, initial U.S. volume was respectable. (Read More…)

By on December 24, 2014

TTAC Chart Canada recapCanadians registered more new vehicles in 2013 than any year in the country’s auto-buying age. Yet in 2014, that record was very nearly broken in the first eleven months of the year.

Auto sales in Canada through November 2014 rose 5.5%, a gain of 89,000 units compared with the first eleven months of 2013.

Despite a sharp 3.4% decline in the number of passenger cars sold in November, the Canadian auto industry was up 3.6% last month thanks to strong pickup truck volume (up 15% to 25,811 units) and continued improvement in the SUV/crossover category. (Read More…)

By on December 23, 2014

2013 Subaru TribecaTry to conjure up in your memory the Subaru B9 Tribeca’s early days. No, we’re not talking about those TTAC-oriented Tribeca memories – I’m far too new at TTAC to delve into the site’s ancient history. No, think back to when the biggest Subaru crossover was downright common.

Yes, “common” might be a bit of a stretch. But Subaru sold more than 18,000 of these beasts in 2006, the Tribeca’s first full year on the market. (Subaru sold nearly 15,000 Tribecas in the final eight months of 2005, an even healthier sales rate. So yes, the decline began early on.) The B9 Tribeca was America’s 167th-best-selling vehicle in 2006, which doesn’t sound very high, but isn’t very low, either. 134 different nameplates generated fewer sales. (Read More…)

By on December 22, 2014

2014 Mazda 5GM Canada sold only 32 copies of its Chevrolet Orlando in November 2014, the worst month yet for the rapidly declining Mazda 5 alternative.

Although the Orlando set an impressive sales pace in its first 18 months in Canada – 2612 were sold during 2012’s fourth-quarter – it’s been in free fall ever since. Sales have declined in 19 of the last 22 months. 2013 volume was down 68%. Through eleven months, Orlando volume in 2014 is off by 43%. (Read More…)

By on December 21, 2014

2015 Volvo S60We’re still a few months away from seeing the first new XC90s at Volvo dealers in North America and many more months away from discovering whether it can rescue the brand’s fortunes on this side of the Atlantic.

Like an overdue baby who doesn’t want to leave his mother’s womb for this cruel, cold, callous world, the XC90 must be planning to dig in its heels (or wheels?) as stevedores attempt to drive it off Swedish docks onto North America-bound ships. Surely Volvo’s newest three-row crossover can’t be looking forward to joining a family of progressively more disappointing vehicles.

Setting aside the fact that Volvo Canada didn’t sell a single S80 in November 2014 – that’s just plain embarrassing – the U.S. situation last month was especially poor. See, it’s not just the age of the outgoing XC90 that’s been bringing down Volvo sales. The brand’s other models, almost without exception, are selling at a far slower rate this year than last year even as the U.S. auto industry expands at a healthy 5.5% clip. (Read More…)

By on December 20, 2014

Acura sales chart TLXEven in the Acura TLX’s best sales month, the brand’s MDX and RDX crossovers still accounted for 55% of Acura sales in the United States.

With the TLX now consistently generating around three out of every ten Acura sales in America, it’s safe to say that Acura’s passenger car division is, for the moment, in safer hands than it was with the TL and TSX last year. Together, they generated 25% of Acura’s total volume in calendar year 2013, down from 40% in 2012 and 50% in 2011.  (Read More…)

By on December 19, 2014

2015 Kia SedonaDespite massive year-over-year improvements, the Kia Sedona continues to be a relatively low-volume player in America’s minivan segment. But are the gains made by the Kia significant enough to make life difficult for the top four?

Compared with November 2013, Sedona volume jumped 578% last month as a follow-up to October’s 251% gain. Through the first three-quarters of 2014, Kia USA had been selling fewer than 630 Sedonas per month. 2376 were sold in October; 3538 in November. The van’s market share through nine months was a paltry 1.3% as even the Mazda 5 and Nissan Quest were easily outselling the Kia. But in November 2014, the Kia Sedona grabbed 9.1% of America’s minivan market. (Read More…)

By on December 18, 2014

Lincoln MKCAfter increasing sales of the brand’s new Escape-related small crossover in five consecutive months, Lincoln MKC volume levelled off in November 2014 at 2152 units. This represents a 2% drop from the total achieved by the MKC in its best month, October, when 2197 were sold. America’s new vehicle market was 2% larger in November than it was during the prior month.

Have we therefore reached the MKC’s maximum monthly volume? Dealers have plenty of copies to sell: there was a 116-day supply at the beginning of November. 2150 sales per month would put the MKC in the same territory as the much larger and more costly Mercedes-Benz GL-Class, ahead of the smaller BMW X1 and also-ex-PAG Volvo XC60, but well back of class leaders like the Acura RDX, Audi Q5, Mercedes-Benz GLK, and BMW X3. This year, the latter four are generating 3610, 3443, 3013, and 2820 average monthly sales, respectively. (Read More…)

By on December 17, 2014

2015 Ford TransitIn November 2014, for the first time in its six-month North American existence, the full-size Ford Transit was America’s best-selling commercial van.

A number of special circumstances made the Transit’s sudden rise to the top of the leaderboard possible, besides an increase in the number of available Transits and, yes, increased demand for the Transit itself. (Read More…)

By on December 16, 2014

2015 Honda Civic American Honda’s Civic posted decreased sales volume in each of the last five months. After claiming the title of America’s best-selling small car in two consecutive years, it’s highly unlikely that the Civic will be able to catch the Toyota Corolla with just one month of sales reporting remaining in calendar year 2014.

U.S. Civic sales through the first six months of 2014 increased 5% compared with the same period one year earlier. While the Civic trailed the Corolla at the halfway point in 2014, that second-place status was actually in keeping with the results from 2013, a year in which Honda’s compact sedan and coupe ended 34,000 sales ahead of the venerable Toyota compact. (Note: Corolla sales reported by Toyota USA always include the Matrix.)

But from July 2014 onward, the Civic did not prove capable of matching 2013’s impressive second-half sales rate, a period which saw Honda generate 53% of its 2013 Civic volume, sufficient for Honda to post the highest level of Civic sales since 2008. (Read More…)

By on December 15, 2014

2015 ford mustang at factoryFord reported in November 2014 the largest number of Mustangs sold in any November since 2006. With 8278 sold last month, year-over-year Mustang volume jumped 62%.

It was also the best month for the Mustang since May of this year, when monthly U.S. Mustang volume jumped beyond 9000 units for just the third time in 23 months.

Yet, “best since 2006,” doesn’t sound nearly as good to the Mustang fan base as, “nearly twice as popular as Camaro,” does it? (Read More…)

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