U.S. Import Auto Sales Up in March - Tire Review Magazine

U.S. Import Auto Sales Up in March

The American International Automobile Dealers Association (AIADA) has released March sales figures for the international nameplate auto industry.

The American International Automobile Dealers Association (AIADA) has released March sales figures for the international nameplate auto industry. Brands sold by America’s 9,600 international nameplate franchises accounted for 54.3 percent of all new vehicles sold in the United States last month, down from 55.4 percent in February.

AutoData Corp. reports that the seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) for March was 17.48 million units versus 16.82 million units a year ago. Total industry unit deliveries, including all brands and unadjusted for business days, increased six percent compared to last March. Sales were up 27 percent compared to February 2018. International nameplate brand sales rose 2.77 percent from a year ago.

“The spring selling season has started off strong,” said AIADA President and CEO Cody Lusk. “Solid auto sales are the result of a robust economy and a healthy jobs market. Today’s numbers are also driven by the fact that American consumers are finding the products and the deals they want at their local dealership. ”

International brands were led last month by Acura (up 15.7 percent from last March), Mitsubishi (up 21.7 percent), and Volkswagen (up 17.8 percent). In contrast, Hyundai’s sales slipped 10.9 percent, due in part to the lack of SUVs and crossovers in its lineup. Throughout the industry, light trucks continued to drive sales demand last month, rising 16.3 percent as a segment, while cars lagged, slipping 9.2 percent.

International auto sales in the U.S. totaled 898,377 units in March, up from 720,982 units in February. Asian brands occupied 45.1 percent of the March auto market, down from 46.1 percent in February. Overall, Asian nameplate dealers sold 755,152 vehicles in March, up from 600,402 vehicles in February, and a two percent increase from March 2017.

European brands sold 152,765 units in March, up from 120,580 units in February and 112,607 units in January. They held 9.2 percent of the February U.S. auto market, down slightly from 9.3 percent in February.

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