US car sales analysis August 2018 – brands [Updated: Tesla figures]

[Update: we have updated the figures with accurate Tesla sales estimates]

After see-sawing for most of the year, the market delivered a surprisingly stable performance in August, with sales up by 1.0%. However, because of the serious sales decline in July, the YTD growth is still just 1.4%, meaning that it’s far from guaranteed that 2018 will end up being a better year than 2017. Despite a lot of dynamism

coming from brands like Jeep and Tesla, the market’s fate will probably be driven more by whether General Motors and Ford can rekindle customers’ interest in their offerings.

Highlights:

  • Seven out of the Top 10 brands registered positive sales growth in August, up from four in July
  • From among these brands the two with the fastest growth rate were both FCA brands: Ram saw its sales grow by over 26%, as the new pickup sales finally came fully on-stream, while Jeep once again saw growth of almost 20%
  • Also doing very well was Hyundai, which registered double-digit growth and managed to push itself into the black YTD
  • The largest decline came courtesy of brands belonging to General Motors, whose almost 13% decline meant that its lead over the Ford brand shrank by half compared to 2017
Ram Pickup
  • Outside of the Top 10, only two mainstream mainstream brands eked out positive sales growth in August: Volkswagen and Mitsubishi, both growing considerably slower in the summer month than over the course of the year so far
  • The remaining mainstream brands all saw their sales fall, with the usual suspects all present and accounted for (DodgeMini , ChryslerFiat and Smart), with only Mazda truly disappointing by seeing its sales slide by the smallest amount (relative to an almost 10% YTD growth)
  • Among luxury brands, Tesla‘s sales took off remarkably thanks to the Model 3, with the brand quintupling (!) its sales since this time last year, allowing it to jump Audi for fourth in the luxury brand standings
Tesla Model 3
  • Audi continued its remarkable 100+ month sales rise wave, getting to within 3,000 units of its closest Top 3 Luxury competitor, BMW, all the while the leading luxury brands Lexus, and especially Mercedes-Benz, suffered sales declines
  • Acura was next from among the luxury brands, and did well to register growth of almost 15%, which brought it close to moving up from YTD sales decline to growth
  • Other than Tesla, the luxury brand that grew most was Alfa Romeo, sales for which practically doubled on August’17, with double-digit growth also coming from Volvo and Land Rover
  • By comparison, August was not a great month for the likes of Porsche and Maserati, both of which saw sales fall by 13%, or Jaguar, for which they fell by over 20%
  • Still, this is nothing compared to Genesis, which once again saw its sales fall by two-thirds relative to last year!
  • Among the exclusive brands Bentley was the only brand to register a sales decline (of over 22%), while McLaren once again posted impressive growth of over 40%
  • Brand ranking

    Monthly YTD
    # Model Aug’18 Aug’17 Δ # 2018 2017 Δ
    a1 General Motors* 240,236 275,552 -12.8% a1 1,933,655 1,916,101 0.9%
    a2 Ford 208,755 200,321 4.2% a2 1,615,045 1,628,824 -0.8%
    a3 Toyota 194,433 196,816 -1.2% a3 1,432,108 1,411,181 1.5%
    a4 Honda 132,831 132,883 0.0% a5 973,357 987,701 -1.5%
    a5 Nissan 101,580 97,340 4.4% a6 909,150 955,340 -4.8%
    a6 Jeep 87,502 73,191 19.6% a7 662,430 548,833 20.7%
    a7 Subaru 64,088 63,215 1.4% a8 (1) 446,374 423,728 5.3%
    a8 (1) Hyundai 56,929 51,223 11.1% a9 (1) 435,853 432,928 0.7%
    a9 (2) Ram 54,808 43,322 26.5% b11 360,214 367,007 -1.9%
    b10 (2) Kia 53,864 53,323 1.0% b10 400,539 405,462 -1.2%
    b11 (1) Dodge 35,575 43,608 -18.4% b12 (1) 317,627 335,852 -5.4%
    b12 Volkswagen 32,255 32,015 0.7% b14 (1) 235,673 220,343 7.0%
    b13 Lexus 28,622 30,801 -7.1% b18 189,019 193,560 -2.3%
    b14 (1) Mazda 25,816 25,846 -0.1% b16 (1) 213,865 194,559 9.9%
    b15 (1) Mercedes-Benz 24,084 28,954 -16.8% b15 (1) 222,797 235,381 -5.3%
    b16 BMW 23,789 23,553 1.0% b17 (1) 199,157 194,604 2.3%
    b17 (10) Tesla** 23,175 3,800 509.9% b25 (6) 84,562 27,045 212.7%
    b18 (1) Audi 20,907 19,811 5.5% b19 (1) 148,070 141,606 4.6%
    b19 (1) Acura 15,072 13,132 14.8% b22 100,972 101,180 -0.2%
    b20 (1) Chrysler 12,219 12,652 -3.4% b20 (1) 112,473 128,050 -12.2%
    b21 (1) Infiniti 10,796 10,986 -1.7% b23 92,713 100,969 -8.2%
    b22 (1) Volvo 8,970 7,993 12.2% b28 (1) 65,214 48,987 33.1%
    b23 (2) Lincoln 8,945 8,708 2.7% b27 (2) 67,112 73,920 -9.2%
    b24 (2) Mitsubishi 8,416 8,164 3.1% b24 (2) 85,693 70,765 21.1%
    b25 (1) Land Rover 7,179 6,320 13.6% b29 (1) 58,167 48,074 21.0%
    b26 (1) Porsche 4,083 4,709 -13.3% b30 (1) 37,524 36,178 3.7%
    b27 (1) Mini 3,800 4,448 -14.6% b31 (1) 30,732 31,048 -1.0%
    b28 Jaguar 2,469 3,101 -20.4% b32 19,136 26,932 -28.9%
    b29 (2) Alfa Romeo 2,240 1,140 96.5% b33 (3) 16,521 6,084 171.5%
    b30 (1) Fiat 1,374 2,120 -35.2% b34 (1) 10,899 19,046 -42.8%
    b31 (1) Maserati 950 1,089 -12.8% b36 (1) 7,463 8,872 -15.9%
    b32 (2) Genesis 613 1,803 -66.0% b35 (1) 8,490 13,366 -36.5%
    b33 (1) Bentley 165 213 -22.5% b37 (2) 1,312 1,516 -13.5%
    b34 (2) McLaren 125 89 40.4% b38 (4) 911 555 64.1%
    b35 (2) Smart 108 229 -52.8% b39 (2) 861 2,394 -64.0%
    b36 (1) Lamborghini 94 91 3.3% b40 752 728 3.3%
    b37 Rolls-Royce 90 86 4.7% b41 720 685 5.1%

    Note: * General Motors posts only consolidated figured in off-quarter months ** Estimates