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Black Friday Boosting November Auto Sales

Dealers taking advantage of kickoff to holiday shopping.

by on Nov.26, 2014

Black Friday isn't just the about getting a deal on electronics. Automakers are using the day to kick off their holiday sales programs.

It’s not just too-good-to-be-true deals on computers, high-definition televisions and portable DVD players drawing people out on Black Friday, many shoppers salivating at the prospect of a great price on a new car will fill auto dealerships across the country boosting November auto sales.

Kelley Blue Book estimates November sales, aided by a strong weekend finish to the month, could climb 2.2% year-over-year to a total of 1.27 million units.

The Automotive Journal of Record!

“Car sales will remain elevated in November in large part because of Black Friday,” said Edmunds Senior Analyst Jessica Caldwell. “In recent years both car shoppers and car dealers have turned toward Black Friday as an opportunity to dive into the holiday shopping season. This is a good example of how the auto industry continues to evolve to become more like the rest of the retail market.”

Alec Gutierrez, senior analyst for Kelley Blue Book, said the Black Friday vehicle deals carmakers are advertising should have a large impact on sales and make the final weekend of the month a busy one for car buying.

“Shoppers continue to return to the dealership as economic conditions remain favorable, with the unemployment rate at its lowest in six years and with consumer confidence nearing pre-recession levels,” he said.

Jeff Bracken, general manager of Lexus, a leader in year-end sales promotions for more than a decade, noted this week that the year-end sales promotions seem to start earlier each year and virtually all manufacturers offer some kind of year-end deals right through the Christmas holidays.

KBB’s November prediction is better than the year-ago result, but down 0.6% from last month. The seasonally adjusted annual rate for November 2014 is estimated at 16.8 million is up from 16.2 million in November 2013, and up from 16.3 million in October 2014.

Retail sales are expected to account for 85% of volume in November 2014, down from 86% in November 2013.

As for most of 2014, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is set for the most growth of any major manufacturer, with an expected overall year-over-year increase of nearly 12%.

(Hyundai-Kia sales to hit record 8 million units. For more, Click Here.)

The top-performing brand, Jeep, as an impressive year-to-date growth of 46%, which may start to slow as year-over-year comparisons now include the new Cherokee. However, the upcoming launch of the Renegade will continue to push the brand’s volume even higher in 2015, Gutierrez said.

(Click Here for details on the four-year low gas prices this weekend.)

Gutierrez also said American Honda also is poised for a strong month in November, with an increase of nearly 4%. While this year hasn’t been the strongest for Honda with year-to-date sales up less than 1%, sales of its core products, including Accord, CR-V and Civic, remain healthy with all three models in the top two of their respective segments.

(To see more about Lexus trying to tie a big red bow on 2014 sales, Click Here.)

Growth in the small sport utility and crossover segment continues with no end in sight, he added.

“November should be another good month for full-size truck sales, as GM and Fiat Chrysler have one last opportunity to sell their models against the outgoing generation of the F-Series, with the new 2015 Ford F-150 scheduled to hit dealerships next month,” said Gutierrez.  “So far, these manufacturers have made the most of the opportunity, as all of their trucks posted double-digit growth in the last three months.”

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