'Clunkers' Program Jump-starts August Sales
Personal opinions and long-term impact aside, the much ballyhooed CARS program did help some automotive OEMs see significant sales increases during the month of August:
- Toyota U.S.A. reported August vehicle sales of 225,088 vehicles, up 10.5 percent over one year ago. Passenger cars recorded an all-time, best-ever month with sales of 142,529 units, up 32.4 percent over the same period last year.
- Ford, Lincoln and Mercury retail sales increased 21 percent versus a year ago, with total sales coming in at 176,323, up 17 percent versus a year ago
- General Motors delivered 246,479 vehicles, the company’s highest monthly sales total of 2009, but still 20 percent less than one year ago. Retail sales were down 17 percent while fleet sales declined 29 percent. However, when comparing August with July, volume was up more than 57,000 vehicles, or 30 percent month-over-month.
- Chrysler Group reported total U.S. sales for August of 93,222 units, an increase of 5 percent compared with July and a decrease of 15 percent when compared with August 2008.
- Daimler reported a total of 18,734 cars sold by the U.S. Mercedes-Benz division for August, a decline of 10.5 percent from a year ago. SmartUSA recorded 1,622 sales, an increase of 14.3 percent over July – its second consecutive month-over-month sales increase.
- American Honda announced record August sales of 161,439 vehicles, up 14.2 percent from last month, although year-to-date sales remain down 24.8 percent.
- Total monthly sales for Acura reached 9,625 units, down 33.8 percent versus last August.
- BMW’s U.S. Group was down 21.3 percent with sales totals of 24,343 units. For the year, sales are down 26.5 percent from 8-month 2008 totals.
- Nissan saw sales of 97,580 units in August, a 0.2 percent increase from a year ago.
- Infiniti sales dipped 30.2 percent when compared to August 2008, down to 7,732 units.
- Volkswagen of America reported August 2009 sales of 24,823 units, representing an increase of 11.4 percent over August 2008.
- Audi sold 8,057 cars and SUVs last month, compared to 6,406 vehicles in August 2008.