Final sales figures for April aren’t due out until next week but expectations are building for another month of automotive market momentum.
Light vehicle sales in the U.S., including fleet, are expected to reach 1.2 million units for the month, up 3.4% from April 2011, according to a forecast from True Car.com, an online data information center. That would work out to another month in which the Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Rate or SAAR will exceed 14 million units – notably ahead of most forecasts going into 2012.
With other indicators providing mixed signals, analysts see the steady growth of the U.S. automotive market as a critical to the nation’s economic recovery.
While forecasts for April vary, TrueCar – which relies on data provided by a national network of dealers – expects the SAAR to reach 14.6 million for the month, up from 13.2 million in April 2011 and 14.4 million in March 2012. Fleet and rental sales are expected to make up 18% of total industry sales in April 2012, TrueCar estimated in its forecast.