Ford’s increasingly truck-heavy lineup held its own in November, with strong sales of the Dearborn automaker’s Expedition and Lincoln Navigator large SUVs offsetting a decline in deliveries of its best-selling F-Series pickup.
Ford’s car sales continued to crater with the segment down 19.5% for the month and 17.5% for the year. Sales of trucks and SUVs also dipped in November, but annual deliveries for the two segments are up 2.0% and 1.0%, respectively.
On a daily-sales basis, Ford delivered 189,427 light-vehicles in November, off 7.7%, according to Wards Intelligence data. The Ford brand was down 8.2% with 180,220 deliveries while Lincoln saw a 3.3% increase to 9,207 units. There were 25 sales days in November, same as a year ago.
Even though the top-selling F-Series dipped 2.1% in November, overall the company is pleased with the performance of its pickups against all-new models including the Ram 1500 and Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, says Mark LaNeve, Ford vice president-U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. For the year, F-Series deliveries are up 1.4%.
“In the face of aggressive competition from two new products, the F-Series is still doing well,” LaNeve says.
Buyers are snapping up the automaker’s all-new large SUVs, with Expedition deliveries up 7.9% while sales of the Lincoln Navigator show no sign of slowing, jumping another 27.3% in November. The two SUVs are up 4.3% and a whopping 73.7%, respectively, through the first 11 months of 2018.
On the downside, sales of the Escape and Explorer were off 25.7% and 15.1% as the automaker winds down sales of the popular CUVs as it prepares to launch a series of all-new models in 2019. The cadence calls for the Ranger midsize pickup first, followed by the Explorer, Lincoln Aviator and then the Escape.
Deliveries of the Focus small car plummeted 66.1% as the company ends the model’s long run in the U.S. market, leaving the Fusion midsize sedan and Mustang pony car as the brand’s non-truck entries. LaNeve says no end date has been announced for the Fusion, which was up 11.8% in November. Mustang sales fell 27% year-over-year.
Lincoln was bolstered by sales of the Navigator as well as the all-new Nautilus and outgoing MKX, up 20.4% with 3,153 deliveries. The luxury brand’s Continental flagship sedan fell 26.8%, similar to the 25.7% decline posted by the MKZ midsize sedan.