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Toyota Sales Off 16% in January

Japanese maker, with quality and unintended acceleration problems, sees volume under 100,000 for first time since 1999.

by on Feb.02, 2010

One month does not a year make, but Camry dropped significantly.

Toyota Motor Sales said total January sales for all brands were 98,796 vehicles in total, a decrease of 9% compared with last January, on a daily selling rate basis.

It was the first time monthly sales were below 100,000 units since 1999.

On January 26, TMS suspended sales of the eight Toyota models involved in the accelerator pedal recall, impacting the Division’s January sales. The eight models represented more than 60% of Toyota inventory at the time.

In terms of volume cars, the Toyota Camry took the biggest hit – off about 5,000 units for the month.

This is the first month in our view where Toyota sales were clearly negatively affected by ongoing controversies over quality and unintended acceleration problems that attracted large media attention with the now infamous floor mat recall of  last fall.

Deadly floor mats were joined this January by the sticking pedal recall. Between both of them more than 5 million vehicles are involved in the U.S., and millions more are affected globally.  Repairs will take months, if not the balance of the year or longer,  to complete.

It is unclear if this is just a temporary decrease in Toyota sales or the beginning of longer trend. One month is too short a period in the current volatile environment. A better gauge will be quarterly data, which  will be available in early April.

Here are the absolute numbers at the current time. Chart follows.  (more…)

Ford Retail Sales Decline 5% in January 2010

Company boosts overall sales results by drastically increasing fleet units. Real gain or reversion to bad habits?

by on Feb.02, 2010

All of Ford Motor Companies brands in the United States posted sales increases for the January 2010 period because of significant boosts in fleet sales, which more than doubled versus last January’s depressed levels.

FMC fleet sales were up 154%, as the automaker showed large gains in every fleet segment – commercial, government and daily rental.

Ford claims that last January most fleet owners deferred vehicle purchases due to the credit crunch and uncertain business and economic conditions. At that time and during the ensuing months the company boasted that it was decreasing fleet sales in favor of more profitable retails ones in a depressed market.

On a retail basis, Ford brands declined 5% in total retail sales when compared with what was an admittedly bad January of 2009.

On a unit basis, however, Ford cars were up +43%, crossovers were up +20%, sport utilities were up +8%, and trucks and vans were up +14%. Among the brands, Ford sales were up +26%, Lincoln sales were up +16% and Mercury sales were up +6%.

In the rough and tumble world of automotive marketing and image building, Ford Motor Company has been separating itself the other two wounded companies that comprise the Detroit Three,  reorganized Chrysler and General Motors, by saying, accurately, that it did not accept taxpayer bailout money last year.

While true as stated, the Dearborn, Michigan, based company has accepted billions in government money to develop vehicles  and retool its U.S. assembly lines to get back in sync with existing and projected consumer tastes, after the U.S.’s largest truck maker stayed with gas-guzzling, body-on-frame pickup trucks and SUVs for far too long.


Analysis not Raw Numbers!

The question facing the family-controlled Ford and its stockholders and potential investors is whether the company can continue to increase share profitably as all of its competitors regroup.  One thing is clear, Ford made huge inrods in overall sales in January against a floundering Toyota.