GM, Ford, Chrysler Sales Down in April

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The hangover after a year of record sales continues to wear on in 2017 as the three American auto manufacturers reported sales that once again lagged behind last year’s.

At General Motors Co., sales were down 5.8% to 244,406 as its two top brands posted a decline in sales last month. Buick and Cadillac both reported an increase in sales compared to April 2016, with the former reported a 17% jump in sales to 20,735 and Cadillac sales gaining 9.5%, reaching 12,300 sold.

Chevrolet sales totaled 164,367, a 10.4% drop, while GMC sales were down to 47,004, or 0.3% from a year ago. The Silverado topped sales for Chevrolet with 40,154 leaving showrooms, followed by the Lordstown-built Cruze with 21,317 sold, a 50.6% increase from last year. GMC sales were led by the Sierra, of which 17,400 were delivered. Buick was led by the Encore, 8,365 sold, while the XT5 topped Cadillac’s chart with 5,501 sold.

Ford Motor Co. reported a 7.2% drop in sales from a year ago as 214,695 vehicles were sold in the U.S. The SUV segment posted a 1.2% gain from April 2016, reaching 73,318 delivered, while the car and truck segments saw decreases of 21.2% to 49,857 and 4.2% to 91,520, respectively.

For the Ford brand, sales dropped 7.5% to 205,004, while the Lincoln brand saw a decline of 0.9% with sales totaling 9,961.

Topping sales for Ford was the F-series pickup truck with 70,657 delivered to customers, followed by the Escape with 25,637 sold and the Explorer with 19,771. Leading the sales chart for Lincoln was the MKC with 2,726, closely followed by the MKZ with 2,658 sold.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ sales were down 7% in April, as 177,441 vehicles were sold across the U.S. Among its American brands, only the Ram pickup line posted an increase, a 5% rise to 47,327.

Jeep sales dropped 17% as 68,879 hit the streets last month. The brand’s No. 1 vehicle was the Grand Cherokee with 18,877 delivered, followed by the Wrangler with 18,841 sold. Both Dodge and Chrysler reported a 3% drop in sales to 39,445 and 17,309, respectively. Dodge sales were led by the Caravan with 9,817 sold, while Chrysler’s most popular was the Pacifica with 10,427 sold.

The decrease from all three automakers continues the trend seen so far in 2017. Following a record year in 2016 and annual sales total on the rise since 2009, the drop is not unexpected, said in its monthly sales estimate, released last week.

“The industry has been holding its breath to see if the days of peak sales are over, and while [first-quarter] sales managed to remain stable, we’re starting to see the slowdown in 2017 we’ve been anticipating,” said Jessica Caldwell, Edmunds’ executive director of industry analysis, in a release. “Year-over-year declines in monthly sales may become more typical as the year progresses, but there’s no reason to be in panic mode. Historically, car sales are still strong.”

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