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Posts Tagged ‘utility vehicle sales’

SUVs Could Soon Make Up Half U.S. New Vehicle Market

Prices also on rise as "customers choose more well-equipped vehicles."

by on Apr.11, 2017

Ford is pushing more luxury and tech features into the Explorer Platinum Edition for 2018.

Utility vehicles now account for 40% of the American market – and a disproportionate share of its profits – but demand is likely to keep growing and could soon reach 50% before leveling off, said a senior Ford Motor Co. executive ahead of this week’s New York International Auto Show, where a number of new SUVs and CUVs will make their debut.

Utes have become the hottest segment in the industry, in part because carmakers continue to find ways to surprise and delight customers with all manner of new designs and features, said Mark LaNeve, Ford’s head of sales, service and marketing. And where classic SUVs once required owners to “sacrifice” things like fuel economy and on-road comfort, today’s utes are nearly as efficient and comfortable as conventional sedans and coupes.

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As a result, “We don’t see (the SUV sales boom) stopping,” said LaNeve, as Ford revealed two new versions of its popular Explorer SUV and announced plans to update the long-neglected Expedition model for the 2018 model-year.

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Auto Market Likely to Maintain Near-Record Momentum

But shift to utes could accelerate, forecasts Toyota autos chief.

by on Dec.02, 2016

The Toyota RAV4 may soon be Toyota's best-seller.

After several tenuous months, U.S. new car sales slipped back on their record track in November, and while it’s likely the industry has hit the peak of the current economic cycle, demand is likely to remain strong for several more years, forecast the U.S. head of automotive operations for Toyota.

What consumers will be buying is another matter, according to Senior Vice President Bob Carter, who stressed that the shift from conventional passenger cars to utility vehicles and other light trucks “is going to continue to accelerate in the future.”

Barring a sudden slowdown of the American market, sales should just nip past last year’s all-time record of around 17.5 million, said Carter, during a meeting with journalists in Detroit. “By anyone’s estimation,” he said, “that’s fantastic.”

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GM Set to Add Array of New Utility Vehicles

Chevrolet to get new midsize CUV.

by on Dec.29, 2015

The Cadillac XT5 at its LA debut, along with Caddy Pres. Johan de Nysschen and GM global product development director Mark Reuss.

This year’s slide in fuel prices has led to a big surge in sales of utility vehicles, whether conventional sport-utes or the newer, car-based crossovers. And General Motors plans to take advantage of that shift away from conventional sedans and coupes by adding an assortment of new utes to its line-up.

They range from downsized models, such as the soon-to-debut Buick Envision, to the big Cadillac XT5. And GM’s four U.S. brands plan to fill in as much white space as possible with either all-new utility vehicles or variants such as the GMC Acadia Denali.

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“We keep expanding the plan.” Johan de Nysschen, the president of the Cadillac brand, told TheDetroitBureau.com following the official unveiling of the new XT5 at the Los Angeles Auto Show last month.

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Better Mileage, Road Manners Helping Utes Overtake Sedans

New generation of smaller utility vehicles help bolster sales.

by on Jul.14, 2015

Honda's CR-V is one reason why crossovers and sport-utiliies are outselling sedans for the first time ever.

For the first time ever, sales of crossovers and conventional sport-utility vehicles are outselling sedans, capping a nearly three decade-long transformation of the U.S. auto market.

When the first generation of sport-utility vehicles emerged in the post-War era they were largely aimed at professionals and outdoorsmen. By the 1980s, manufacturers began targeting more mainstream buyers. But it’s only in recent years that utility vehicles have become the products of choice for millions of American families.

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Industry analysts say several factors have hastened that transformation. For one thing, newer crossover-utility vehicles offer more car-like, on-road manners than traditional SUVs. A new study also points to another critical factor: the increasingly small gap in fuel economy between utes and sedans. (more…)

SUVs and Crossovers Now Outselling Sedans

“Trucks” now dominate American sales charts.

by on Jul.17, 2014

The shift to car-based crossovers -- such as the latest version of the Ford Explorer - has helped drive the ongoing boom of utility vehicles.

With the U.S. auto industry in full recovery mode, manufacturers are struggling to keep up with demand of some of their most popular sport-utility vehicles and crossovers which, for the first time, are now outselling conventional sedans, according to a new study.

Utility vehicles, whether traditional, truck-like SUVs, or more modern, car-like crossovers, accounted for 36.5% of the overall American market during the first five months of 2014, compared with 35.4% for sedans, long the dominant body style, according to an analysis of new vehicle registrations by IHS Automotive.  A year ago, sedans outsold “utes” 36.6% to 33.9%.

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“These vehicles offer the combination of appealing features associated with both cars and light trucks, including a higher seating position, higher ground clearance, softer ride, more interior space, optional four-wheel or all-wheel drive, and towing capacity, among others,” said HIS analyst Tom Libby.

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