February U.S. Sales: Strong Retail Finish and Major Rise in Leasing

A strong retail sales finish at the end of the month pushed up February total light-vehicle (retail and fleet) sales in the U.S. market by 8.1% (selling-day adjusted) to nearly 1.2  million units.

Robust February sales translated to a 15.34 million-unit seasonally adjusted annual sales rate (SAAR), according to analysis by our Power Information Network® (PIN) and strategic partner LMC Automotive. February was the fourth consecutive month with a SAAR of at least 15.2 million-units.

Retail new-vehicle sales rose 8.9% from a year ago to slightly more than 928,000 units, which translated to a 12.1 million SAAR that was the strongest start of a year since the beginning of 2008. In addition, although fleet sales accounted for a slightly lower portion of total sales than a year ago—22.1% vs. 22.6% in 2012—fleet deliveries were up 5.3% when adjusted for one less selling day this year. Continue reading ›

U.S. Light-Vehicle Sales in September Best Since 2008

Retail light-vehicle sales during the last week of September were much stronger than expected, pushing up the month’s retail seasonally adjusted sales pace, or SAAR, to 12.4 million units—the second highest average retail pace this year, according to analysis by J.D. Power’s Power Information Network® (PIN) and strategic partner LMC Automotive. Total sales were strong as well—highest since March 2008—and finished with a 14.9 million SAAR.

In September, retail car and light-truck deliveries climbed 16.8%* from last year to just under (2,700 units less) 1 million units At the same time, September retail totals slipped 1.5% from a strong retail performance in August, when adjusted on a selling-day basis. Yet, September’s retail SAAR was 1.9 million units stronger than in the same month of 2011.

Fleet sales declined 4.1% and accounted for only 16% of total sales in September, which was down from a 19% share of total sales a year ago. Nearly 190,000 fleet units were delivered. The fleet SAAR averaged 2.5 million units—up 600,000 units from last month, but down 100,000 units from September 2011. Continue reading ›