Chrysler was one of the few makers to shake off the January freeze with products like this 2014 Ram 1500.
The record cold weather that has swept across much of the U.S. in recent weeks has apparently put car sales in the deep freeze – a situation analysts suggest was worsened by the slide in stock prices that has again raised concerns about the nation’s on-again/off-again economic recovery.
While a few manufacturers were able to buck the downward trend, key makers including General Motors and Volkswagen saw sales tumble last month. And the industry, on the whole, saw average transaction prices – the amount consumers actually paid after factoring in incentives and options – slide after months of reaching new records.
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“Given the difficult weather in our largest sales regions, we are fortunate to have held in at retail as well as we did,” said John Felice, vice president of marketing, sales and service for Ford, which experienced a 7% decline in sales during January.
“In areas where the weather was good, such as in the West, sales were up,” Felice added, noting, “The poor weather also had an impact on the timing of some of our fleet deliveries. A bright spot is Lincoln, which had its strongest sales in four years.”