The year 2011 was filled with quite a few upheavals, both globally and domestically, but the global industry fared pretty well, growing by around 5 percent. The U.S. market followed a similar trajectory, growing by an estimated 11.2 percent. Absolute sales increased from approximately 11,485,614 units in 2010 to 12,775,238 units in 2011.
All three of the domestic manufacturers gained market share. General Motors finished 2011 with a market share of 19.6 percent, maintaining its status as the largest automaker in America. Ford Motor Corp. followed fairly close with a 16.8% market share, an increase, despite the termination of its Mercury brand. The Chrysler Group realized the biggest gain, growing from 9.4 percent in 2010 to 10.7 percent in 2011. Combined, the three American automakers accounted for 47.1 percent of the overall U.S. market, an increase from 2010’s 45.2 percent.
Most of the foreign automakers also fared well. Surging Hyundai/Kia resumed their winning streak, increasing their combined market share from 7.7% to 8.9%. And while Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Subaru saw little change in their market shares, both Honda and Toyota recorded notable drops. The once venerable Honda was a big loser, dropping from 10.6 percent in 2010 to 9 percent in 2011. Toyota was an even bigger loser, incurring a sharp drop from 15.2% to 12.9 percent. In analysing these drops, we can’t discount the adverse impact of the Japanese tsunami and, later, the Thailand flood on their sales. Even so, while Toyota and Honda were severely impacted, the third member of the Japanese trio, Nissan, was practically unfazed by both disasters. Better decision-making helped the company realize an increase in its market share from 7.8 percent to 8.2 percent.
With both Toyota and Honda getting their operations back on track, we see both automakers having a rebound year in 2012, assuming nothing unexpected rocks their boats yet again, that is. Below is a tabulation of the absolute sales numbers recorded by the mainstream brands/companies for 2011, along with their respective market shares.
|Brands||% Change||2011 Vol.||2010 Vol.||2011 Market share||2010 Market Share|
|Ford Mo Co||11.0%||2,148,806||1,935,462||16.8%||16.9%|
|Toyota Mo Co||-6.7%||1,644,661||1,763,595||12.9%||15.4%|
|Jag Land Rover||11.4%||50,375||45,204||0.4%||0.4%|
Ford Focus, The World’s Best-Selling Car in 2012
The Ford Focus had a stellar year in 2012, becoming the world’s best-selling car for the second year in a row.
According to research by R.L. Polk, Ford sold 1,020,410 units of the compact car worldwide in 2012 — 879,914 deliveries made in 2011 — beating out the second place Toyota Corolla‘s 872,774 sales by a large margin.
Ford also laid claim to the No. 3 and 6 spots with its F-150 pickup truck (785,630 sales) and Fiesta subcompact (723,130), respectively. The Chinese-made Wuling Zhiguang (768,870 units) took spot number four, while the Toyota Camry (729,793 units) rounded out the top five best performers.
Other strong performers were the Volkswagen Golf (699,148 units) at No. 7, the Chevrolet Cruze (661,325 units) at Np.8 and the Honda Civic (651,159 units) and CR-V (624,982 units) at No. 9 and 10, respectively..
March 2013: America’s Top 10 Best Selling Compact Cars
Already one of the largest vehicle segments in the U.S., the compact car segment is increasingly becoming the most prominent, largely because the so-called “compact” cars are, well, pretty large and offer most, if not all, of the luxury, safety and convenience features once sought after in their mid-size counterparts. Needless to say, competition has become fiercer.
In march, the once untouchable Japanese models lost ground to their Korean and American rivals. While the Toyota Corolla held on to its top dog status convincingly, the Honda Civic saw a slight decline, making room for the Hyundai Elantra (sales surged by a whopping 32.90%) to almost topple it.
The Chevrolet Cruze and Ford Focus also had a good month, despite the latter’s 11.90% sales decline. Aside from the Mazda3‘s 21.63% sales decline, there were no noteworthy changes at the bottom half of the list.
|Rank||Car||March 2013||% Change vs 2012||Year to Date||YTD % Change vs 2012|
March 2013: Top 10 Best Selling Cars
These are the top 10 best-selling cars in the U.S. in March 2013. Do you see any surprises? Sure you do. While the Ford F150 and the Chevrolet Silverado at the number one and two spots, respectively, come as no surprise, the Nissan Altima unseating the Toyota Camary as the top-selling car is a doozy.
This is not the first time that the Altima has performed very well, but the fact that it outsold the Camry fair and square (no tsunami or natural disaster to blame) is a telling sign of just how ultra competitive the mid-size sedan segment has become. It’s not only because most of the competing cars are good, but also because many automakers that once shunned discounts and attractive financing deals — the Japanese in particular — are now embracing them in pursuit of segment domination.
Despite their strong showings, both the Altima and Camry saw their sales decline over last March. On the other hand, the Honda Accord saw a large gain and was nipping at the heels of the Camry for the number four spot. The Ford Fusion saw a modest gain and is increasingly becoming a regular on the top 10 list, while the the Honda Civic seems to be just about ready to drop off the list, permanently replaced by either the Ford Escape or the Honda CR-V.
As often seems the case, we lied about the list just containing the top 10 best-selling cars. For your convenience, we’ve extended it to include the top 20 cars. Sorry.
|Rank||Vehicle||March, 2013||% Change||Year to Date||YTD|