Auto Sales Continue to Soar in September Despite Volkswagen Crisis, Forecasts

Auto Sales Continue to Soar in September Despite Volkswagen Crisis, Forecasts

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — September 24, 2015 —, the premier destination for car shopping, forecasts that 1,415,436 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in September for an estimated Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) of 17.8 million. The projected sales will be a 10.1 percent decrease from August 2015, but a 13.9 percent increase from September 2014. This will make this month's sales volume the biggest September since 2004, and the sales rate will be the biggest September SAAR since 2000.

The month's impressive sales come as Volkswagen continues to deal with its highly-publicized crisis in which it admitted to using a "cheat device" to pass EPA emissions tests for many of its iconic diesel-powered vehicles. The crisis has had very little impact on consumer confidence in the overall industry, even as it proves to be a self-inflicted wound for the German automaker. In fact, Edmunds projects that Volkswagen/Audi will be the only major manufacturer to post year-over-year sales losses (-2.0 percent) in September.

"Volkswagen's deception is dominating headlines, but it is not keeping shoppers away from other brands' showrooms," says Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell. "It puts the crisis in a little bit of perspective, since these Volkswagen diesels don't constitute a very big share of sales. It's also a reminder that buyers won't disappear from the market just because they suddenly can't or don't want to buy these affected cars. They're willing to turn to other automakers that will meet their needs."

Sales Volume September 2015 Forecast September 2014 August 2015 Change from September 2014 Change from August 2015
GM 239,603 223,437 270,480 7.2% -11.4%
Ford 218,921 179,518 233,880 21.9% -6.4%
Toyota 194,515 167,279 224,381 16.3% -13.3%
FCA 194,423 169,890 201,672 14.4% -3.6%
Honda 134,155 118,223 155,491 13.5% -13.7%
Nissan 118,117 102,955 133,351 14.7% -11.4%
Hyundai/Kia 114,894 96,638 130,909 18.9% -12.2%
VW/Audi 40,110 40,913 51,126 -2.0% -21.5%
Industry 1,415,436 1,242,527 1,573,590 13.9% -10.1% estimates that retail SAAR will come in at 15.2 million vehicles in September, with fleet transactions accounting for 14.8 percent of total sales. An estimated 3.01 million used cars will be sold in September, for a SAAR of 37.5 million (compared to 3.21 million ? or a SAAR of 36.7 million ? used car sales in August).

Market Share September 2015 Forecast September 2014 August 2015 Change from September 2014 Change from August 2015
GM 16.9% 18.0% 17.2% -1.1% -0.3%
Ford 15.5% 14.4% 14.9% 1.0% 0.6%
Toyota 13.7% 13.5% 14.3% 0.3% -0.5%
FCA 13.7% 13.7% 12.8% 0.1% 0.9%
Honda 9.5% 9.5% 9.9% 0.0% -0.4%
Nissan 8.3% 8.3% 8.5% 0.1% -0.1%
Hyundai/Kia 8.1% 7.8% 8.3% 0.3% -0.2%
VW/Audi 2.8% 3.3% 3.2% -0.5% -0.4%

More insight into recent auto industry trends can be found in's Industry Center at

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