In this section of the blog, you can find information and opinions about car sales in the United States. Stay up-to-date with which cars are selling the best and what we think future models will do.
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US sales: February 2017, models

After discussing the US auto brand sales ranking for February, let’s zoom in on the models.

It may only be February, but there is a clear picture emerging as to how the Top 10 will look like in 2017. As always, the top Top 3 is occupied by the domestic large pickups  – in February Ram Pickup stumbled a bit, registering an uncharacteristically low growth rate of 1.3%, while Chevrolet Silverado recovered from a poor performance to record a growth rate of 17.1%. Next follow the compact crossovers – in some months, such as in February, the Top 4-6 positions will be occupied exclusively by such models. Of those the Nissan Rogue is emerging as the top performer, once again gaining over 50% in sales compared to the year prior, and placing 4th for only the second time in its history. The new Honda CR-V is gaining sales nicely, as is the Ford Escape which was facelifted early in 2016; less so the Toyota RAV4, whose relative under-performance combined with continued sales decline for its Corolla and Camry stablemates results in Toyota being shut out of the Top 6 for the second month in a row. It is a similar story for the other top brands and their compact and mid-sized mainstream offerings – Nissan saw sales fall for both the Sentra and the Altima, as did Honda for the Civic and Accord, though the brand that should really despair is Ford, with both the Focus and Fusion losing over 30% in sales compared to Feb’16, or Chevrolet, whose Malibu lost over 40% in sales (though the Cruze did gain 18.2%).

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US sales: February 2017, brands

Car sales in 2017 so far look like they won’t be able to match the record set in 2016 – for the second month in a row the market recorded a slight decline in sales compared to last year, with February sales falling by 0.8% to 1,332,176 units. 

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Poll: how well will the Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid do in the US?

Yesterday Hyundai announced that the Ioniq Hybrid will cost around $23,000 when it goes on sale in the US, which makes it some $2,000 cheaper than its main competitor, Toyota Prius. In addition, the Hyundai can claim to be considerably more efficient than the Toyota, at least on paper, promising 58 mpg combined to the latter’s 52 mpg. So far things look promising for the Hyundai, but can it really succeed where the likes of Honda Insight failed?

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US sales: January 2017, models

After discussing the US auto brand sales ranking for January, let’s zoom in on the models.

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US sales 2016 Alternative Power segment

Sales of Alternative Power cars across all segments fell by 11.2 percent in 2016, making this the third year in a year of decline in a row. This means that, with 264,287 sales in 2016, the meta-segment is some 25 percent smaller than it was at its peak in 2013, though it is still more than twice as big as it was a decade ago. That said, prospects for cars with alternative power still look pretty bleak because cheap gas keeps luring people away from EVs, hybrids and more fuel-efficient cars in general into larger crossovers, SUVs and pick-up trucks. Not even the new Toyota Prius liftbackChevrolet Volt or Tesla Model X seem to be able to stop that.

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US sales 2016 Large Commercial Vans segment

US large van segment

Sales in the Large Commercial Vans segment rose by 15.4 percent in 2016 to 377,971 vehicles, the highest level they have been in the past decade. While 2017 is unlikely to bring any big changes to the segment lineup, sales are likely to continue rising at the clear expense of the Small Commercial Vans segment, as long as gas prices don’t rise too quickly.

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US sales 2016 Small Commercial Vans segment

US small van segment

Sales in the Small Commercial Vans segment fell by 10.4 percent in 2016 to 84,408 vehicles, the first time that annual sales in the segments have declined since  Ford Transit Connect kicked-off the segment as we know right now in 2009. Low fuel costs are holding back sales as American business generally prefer Large Commercial Vans or Pickup Trucks instead. With no likely new entrants in 2017, the segment’s fortune depends square on customers’ expectation of what gas prices will do in the near future.

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US sales: January 2017, brands

After 2016 set a new record for passenger car sales in the US, the new year got off to a slow start with sales falling 0.6 percent to 1,140,473 in January. 
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US sales 2016 Premium Mid-sized SUV segment

US premium mid-sized SUVSales in the Premium Mid-sized SUV segment rose by 14.9 percent in 2016, a slightly slower pace of growth than for the Premium Compact SUV segment, but faster than the Premium Large SUV segment. Moreover, with total sales of 434,412 it came to within 3,000 units to outselling the Premium Mid-sized segment – it has increased its sales almost seven-fold over the past decade, while its non-SUV cousin segment lost almost 20 percent of sales over the same period. 2017 promises to be yet another good year for this segment, with the arrival of the new Audi Q5BMW X3, as well as possibly the new Volvo XC60 and Infiniti QX50.… Continue Reading …

US sales 2016 Sports Large and Exotics segment

US large sports

Sales in the Sports Large and Exotics segment fell by 10.4 percent in 2016 to 54,994, about a third lower than they were a decade ago. The segment’s prospects for 2017 are rather bleak: not only right now it seems that there will be no big new debuts in this segment in the coming year, the early indication is that customers are not very keen on the new, turbocharged iteration of one of the mainstays of the segment: Porsche 911

Note: going forward, the segments Sports Large and Exotics have been merged, partly to align the US reporting with that for Europe, and partly because data for the old Exotic segment became very thin ever since sales estimates for the truly exotic brands (Aston Martin, Ferrari, Lamborghini) became unavailable. 

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