September 2014 Sales Thread: Sales through Q3 Up 5.4%

September 2014 Sales Thread: Sales through Q3 Up 5.4%

September 2014 Light Vehicle Sales Volume:
WardsAuto forecast LV Sales:                      1.26 million units
ACTUAL September LV Sales:                    1.24 million units

September 2014 Light Vehicle SAAR:
Forecast LV SAAR:                                      16.69 million
ACTUAL September LV SAAR:               16.34 million

WardsAuto tracks light-vehicle (LV) deliveries throughout sales reporting day. Monthly year-over-year change represents the change in daily sales rate (DSR). September had 24 selling days this year and 23 in 2013. The extra day means DSR % change will be lower than year-over-year comparisons of total monthly sales volumes this month.


SUMMARY: Fiat-Chrysler outsold Toyota as Detroit Three automakers comprised the three top-selling vehicle sellers in the U.S. for the first time since September 2011.

After an August sales spike that drove the monthly SAAR to 17.45 million, September U.S. light vehicle sales cooled somewhat, dropping to an annualized rate just below 16.4 million on deliveries of 1.24 million LVs.

September's tally, nonetheless, represented a 4.7% uptick in daily sales compared with same-month year-ago, and brought year-to-date deliveries to 12.37 million units, a 5.4% improvement over the first nine months of 2013.

Detroit Three automakers (along with electric vehicle maker Tesla) accounted for 45.9% of September sales, up from a year-ago share of 45.1%. The companies also have a combined 45.3% of YTD sales.

U.S.-based automakers led all other regions with a 6.5% year-over-year improvement in September.

Asia automakers were up 4.9% on a daily basis while grabbing a 44.9% of U.S. sales, even with the group's year-ago market share. Through the first three quarters of 2014, Japan and South Korea-based automakers have a 46.1% share of the market.

European automakers delivered 113,348 LVs last month, a 4% decline in DSR, due primarily to Volkswagen brand's 22% drop-off in daily sales compared with year-ago. The group is tracking 1% over year-ago through nine months.

Additional company info and links to related stories appear below.

Related Articles/Data

 sold over 118,000 LVs in September, equating to a 7.3% bump in the company's DSR compared with year-ago. But the tally was 6.4% below expectations, pointing to the possibility that more of August's sales were true pull-ahead sales, spurred by incentive spending. Indications were that automakers' average spend on incentives actually went up from August to September, but so far the three largest Asia-based automakers have reported sales at or below WardsAuto projections.


The Detroit Three automakers combined for a 6.6% increase in daily sales, with some 567,000 LV sales in September. That brings the companies' collective year-to-date sales to just under 5.6 million units, a 5.2% improvement over like-2013.

General Motors led the D3 in DSR gains last month, with a 14.4% year-over-year jump in daily sales on 223,437 deliveries. 

Audi was the first European automakers to report September sales, moving just under 15,000 units in the month - a 9.4% improvement over year-ago DSR. YTD Audi sales are up 14.5%.

10:30 AM EST: 

Fiat-Chrysler delivered 168,168 LVs in September, a 13.6% year-over-year improvement in the company's daily sales rate (DSR), just above WardsAuto projections.  

Ford sales also came in a tick higher than forecast. But the news was not as good for the automaker, as daily sales fell 7% compared with year-ago, on 175,778 LV deliveries. The company has pulled back markedly on sales to daily rental companies in recent month, and is also managing its supply of F-Series pickups in preparation for prolonged downtime and retooling for the all new model due in 2015.

Nissan reported 102,955 deliveries of its Nissan and Infiniti brands, a 13.6% DSR gain, directly in line with projections. 

However, leading Japanese automaker Toyota sold 167,279 units, well below expectations, and finished the month behind not only Ford, which it outsold last month, but Chrysler as well. The company fell 2.5% below its same-month year-ago DSR. Heavy competition in the midsize category, where Honda is expected to make some gains this month, likely played a role in Toyota's sales downturn. Daily sales of Toyota's midsize Camry were down almost 11%.

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