Edmunds.com: Gov’t shutdown didn’t stall October auto sales

press release from edmunds.com

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — October 24, 2013 — Edmunds.com, the premier resource for car shopping and automotive information, forecasts that 1,229,860 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in October for an estimated Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) of 15.5 millionThe projected sales will be an 8.2 percent increase from September 2013, and a 12.7 percent increase from October 2012.

The overall sales projections suggest that the government shutdown earlier this month had minimal effect on auto sales. But, says Edmunds.com, a longer shutdown could have left an ugly mark on what has been otherwise a glowing year for the automotive industry.

“It looks like the government shutdown ended just in the nick of time,” says Edmunds.com Senior Analyst Jessica Caldwell. “The week-by-week data suggests that consumers started to get jittery by the middle of the month. But with the government back to work, most lost sales should be made up in the latter half of the month, and the industry’s momentum will continue the pace it enjoyed before the disruption in Washington.”

SALES VOLUME FORECAST, BY MANUFACTURER

Sales Volume

Oct-13 Forecast

Oct-12

Sep-13

Change from Oct 2012*

Change from Sep 2013*

GM

215,274

195,764

187,195

10.0%

15.0%

Ford

193,988

167,947

184,452

15.5%

5.2%

Toyota

178,828

155,242

164,457

15.2%

8.7%

Chrysler Group

139,848

126,185

143,017

10.8%

-2.2%

Honda

120,484

106,973

105,563

12.6%

14.1%

Hyundai/Kia

95,786

92,723

93,105

3.3%

2.9%

Nissan

94,492

79,685

86,868

18.6%

8.8%

VW/Audi

46,798

46,019

44,985

1.7%

4.0%

Industry

1,229,860

1,091,546

1,136,218

12.7%

8.2%

*NOTE: Oct. 2013 had 27 selling days, Oct. 2012 had 26 and Sept. 2013 had 23.

Edmunds.com estimates that retail SAAR will come in at 13.0 million vehicles in October, with fleet transactions accounting for 16.0 percent of total sales. An estimated 3.06 million used cars will be sold in October, for a SAAR of 35.6 million (compared to 3.02 million – or a SAAR of 36.3 million – used car sales in September).

AUTOMAKER PERFORMANCE

While most major automakers are expected to easily clear September’s sales totals, Edmunds.com projects that Chrysler sales will fall 2.2 percent month to month. As a result, Edmunds.com expects that the company’s market share will recede 1.2 percentage points in October, just one month after it hit its highest share in over five years.

MARKET SHARE FORECAST, BY MANUFACTURER

Market Share

Oct-13 Forecast

Oct-12

Sep-13

Change from
October 2012
(Percentage pts.)

Change from September 2013
(Percentage pts.)

GM

17.5%

17.9%

16.5%

-0.4%

1.0%

Ford

15.8%

15.4%

16.2%

0.4%

-0.5%

Toyota

14.5%

14.2%

14.5%

0.3%

0.1%

Chrysler Group

11.4%

11.6%

12.6%

-0.2%

-1.2%

Honda

9.8%

9.8%

9.3%

0.0%

0.5%

Hyundai/Kia

7.8%

8.5%

8.2%

-0.7%

-0.4%

Nissan

7.7%

7.3%

7.6%

0.4%

0.0%

VW/Audi

3.8%

4.2%

4.0%

-0.4%

-0.2%

General Motors, meanwhile, is expected to create a little breathing room at the top of the sales standings. Edmunds.com projects that GM sales will increase 15 percent from September to October, outpacing top rival Ford’s growth of 5.2 percent. In September, Ford finished within almost 3,000 sales of GM’s total, and nearly claimed its first head-to-head victory since March 2011.

More insight into recent auto industry trends can be found in Edmunds.com’s Industry Center at http://www.edmunds.com/industry-center/.

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