2010 Closes with Highest Sales of the Year, Edmunds.com Forecasts

By Michelle Krebs December 22, 2010

calendar - 220.JPGThe year 2010 is closing on a relatively high note with December car and truck sales in the United States expected to be the highest of the year. That should push full-year sales to 11.5 million vehicles.

Edmunds.com forecasts December sales will total 1,127,000 units, the highest sales of the year and, in fact, the highest sales since Cash for Clunkers-fueled August 2009, when sales totaled 1,249,568 vehicles. As a result, the Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate of sales for December would come in at 12.34 million, also the highest sales rate since August 2009 when it was 14.15 million.

For the year, sales of 11.5 million vehicles would be about 11 percent higher than 2009's 10.4 million vehicles.

The positive close of 2010 sets the U.S. auto industry up for an improved 2011. Edmunds.com forecasts that 2011 sales will be about 12.9 million vehicles.

December's total 1,127,000 vehicles predicted to be sold represents a 30 percent increase from November, which traditionally is one of the lowest sales month of the year along with January, and a 10-percent increase from November 2009.

Of the total, retail sales are expected to be about 912,000 units, up from approximately 710,000 last month, demonstrating consumers are gradually returning to showrooms. SAAR for retail sales increases from last month at about 10.1 million. Sales in the early part of 2010 were buoyed by fleet sales, as rental car companies and corporations replaced their aging vehicles.

A plus for manufacturers was the fact that it didn't take all that much in the way of incentives to lure the consumer to the showroom. Though automakers clearly spent heavily on advertising year-end sales, the average automaker incentive edged up only $28 or 1.1 percent  to $2,492 per vehicle in December compared with November, Edmunds.com estimates. And incentives were down from a year ago December by $62 per vehicle, or 2.4 percent.

December Sales by Company

Toyota, which has endured one of its most difficult years in its U.S. history, continues to struggle to regain sales traction. Toyota is the only maker among the Big 6 expected to report a year-to-year sales decline, as it also did in November.

General Motors and Chrysler along with Nissan are forecasted to post double-digit sales increases from last December; Ford and Honda should show single-digit increases.

Toyota's decline and Ford's rise guarantees Ford the No. 2 sales spot for the month and the year.The combined monthly U.S. market share for Chrysler, Ford and GM for December is expected to be 45.6 percent in December 2010, down from 46.1 percent in December 2009 but up from 44.4 percent in November 2010.

Edmunds.com predicts the following sales performance by company in December:

GM UP.JPGGM will sell 230,100 vehicles, up 10.9 percent from December 2009 and up 36.4 percent from November, for a market share of 20.4 percent, up from 20.3 percent in December 2009 and up from 19.5 percent in November.



FORD UP.JPGFord will sell 187,300 vehicles, up 5.1 percent from December 2009 and up 32.0 percent from November, for a market share of 16.6 percent, down from 17.4 percent in December 2009 but up from 16.4 percent in November.



TOYOTA DOWN.JPGToyota will sell 164,900 vehicles, down 12.2 percent from December 2009 but up 27.5 percent from November, for a market share of 14.6 percent, down from 18.4 percent in December 2009 and down from 15.0 percent in November 2010.



HONDA UP.JPGHonda will sell 114,100 vehicles, up 6.5 percent from December 2009 and up 27.3 percent from November, for a market share of 10.1 percent, down from 10.5 percent in December 2009 and down from 10.4 percent in November.



CHRYSLER UP.JPGChrysler will sell 96,800 vehicles up 12.6 percent from December 2009 and up 32.1 percent from November, for a market share of 8.6 percent, up from 8.4 percent in December 2009 and up from 8.5 percent as in November.



NISSAN UP.JPGNissan will sell 92,300 vehicles, up 25.9 percent from December 2009 and up 29.3 percent from November, for a market share of 8.2 percent, up from 7.2 percent in December 2009 but down from 8.3 percent in November.



 

Change from December 2009 (Adjusted for fewer selling days)

Change from December 2009 (Unadjusted for fewer selling days)

Change from November 2010 (Unadjusted for more selling days)

Chrysler (Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram)

16.8%

12.6%

32.1%

Ford (Ford, Lincoln, Mercury)

9.0%

5.1%

32.0%

GM (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Hummer, Pontiac, Saturn)

15.0%

10.9%

36.4%

Honda (Acura, Honda)

10.5%

6.5%

27.3%

Nissan (Infiniti, Nissan)

30.6%

25.9%

29.3%

Toyota (Lexus, Scion, Toyota)

-9.0%

-12.2%

27.5%

Industry Total

14.2%

10.2%

30.4%


Source: Edmunds.com

December 2010 had 27 selling days, one fewer than last December 2009.

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LEAVE A COMMENT

1487 says: 5:42 AM, 12.24.10

looks good

carguy58 says: 1:31 PM, 12.26.10

Toyota just can't get off the shnide.

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