Memorial Day Sales Expected to Boost New Vehicle Sales in May, Forecasts Edmunds
Although May auto sales are expected to fall short year-over-year, analysts predict a SAAR of at least 17 million for the second time in 2019 thanks to automakers, dealers extending holiday incentives

SANTA MONICA, CA — May 29, 2019 — The car shopping experts at Edmunds forecast that 1,551,643 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in May for an estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 17.0 million. This reflects a 15.9% increase in sales from April 2019, but a 2.2% decrease from May 2018.

"Dealers piled on the incentives and rolled out the barbecue grills this Memorial Day weekend to lure in shoppers and it looks like it did the trick," said Jeremy Acevedo, Edmunds' manager of industry analysis. "Good deals have been tougher to come by this year due to higher interest rates and rising prices, so it makes sense that shoppers would pounce on the chance for a steal."

Edmunds analysts note that while the May sales rebound is a positive sign for the industry, it's likely not the start of an ongoing trend.

"It's going to be an up and down year," Acevedo noted. "Automakers are still figuring out how to balance supply with declining demand, but incentive budgets aren't big enough for dealers to offer deep discounts on a consistent basis. And when those bargains go away, so do the shoppers."

SALES VOLUME FORECAST, BY MANUFACTURER
Sales
Volume
May
2019 Forecast
May
2018
April
2019
Change from
May 2018
Change from
April 2019
GM* 259,666 265,030 231,000 -2.0% 12.4%
Ford* 230,946 240,679 194,000 -4.0% 19.0%
Toyota 214,637 215,321 183,866 -0.3% 16.7%
Fiat Chrysler 198,944 214,294 172,900 -7.2% 15.1%
Honda 148,355 153,069 125,775 -3.1% 18.0%
Hyundai/Kia 127,938 125,518 108,410 1.9% 18.0%
Nissan 122,829 131,832 95,698 -6.8% 28.4%
VW/Audi 49,408 50,526 46,333 -2.2% 6.6%
Tesla 13,570 - - - -
Industry 1,551,643 1,586,902 1,339,102 -2.2% 15.9%

*GM sales totals for May 2018 are estimated, GM & Ford sales totals for April 2019 are estimated

**NOTE: May 2019 had 26 selling days, May 2018 had 26 and April 2019 had 25.

Edmunds estimates that retail SAAR will come in at 13.8 million vehicles in May 2019, with fleet transactions accounting for 18.9% of total sales. An estimated 3.4 million used vehicles will be sold in May 2019, for a SAAR of 39.2 million (compared to 3.5 million — or a SAAR of 39.1 million — in April).

MARKET SHARE FORECAST, BY MANUFACTURER
Market
Share
May
2019 Forecast
May
2018
April
2019
Change from
May 2018
Change from
April 2019
GM* 16.7% 16.7% 17.3% 0.0% -0.6%
Ford* 14.9% 15.2% 14.6% -0.3% 0.3%
Toyota 13.8% 13.6% 13.7% 0.3% 0.1%
Fiat Chrysler 12.8% 13.5% 12.9% -0.7% -0.1%
Honda 9.6% 9.6% 9.4% -0.1% 0.2%
Hyundai/Kia 8.2% 7.9% 8.1% 0.3% 0.1%
Nissan 7.9% 8.3% 7.1% -0.4% 0.8%
VW/Audi 3.2% 3.2% 3.5% 0.0% -0.3%
Tesla 0.9% - - - -

More insight into recent auto industry trends can be found in the Edmunds Industry Center at https://www.edmunds.com/industry/insights.html.

About Edmunds
Edmunds guides car shoppers online from research to purchase. With in-depth reviews of every new vehicle, shopping tips from an in-house team of experts, plus a wealth of consumer and automotive market insights, Edmunds helps millions of shoppers each month select, price and buy a car with confidence. Regarded as one of America's best workplaces by Fortune and Great Place to Work, Edmunds is based in Santa Monica, California, and has a satellite office in Detroit, Michigan. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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