New car sales in the United States remained stable in May, ending only a slight loss in deliveries of 0.3% and sales of about 1.5 million vehicles.
May’s results were mixed for manufacturers. Producers like Ford, Honda or Nissan ended the month with sales increases, but others such as General Motors (GM), Fiat Chrysler (FCA) and Toyota, posted May in the box of customer losses.
Ford, who last May unexpectedly announced the replacement of its CEO Mark Fields by Jim Hackett to “change the culture” of the company, was one of the manufacturers that achieved the best results.
Sales of the blue oval brand rose 2.2% over the same month in 2016 and stood at 241,126 vehicles in May in the United States, thanks to the increase in deliveries of vans and vehicles for rental companies.
Ford explained that truck sales were 99,237 units, up 9.4% from May 2015, while SUVs also rose 4.3% to 81,324 vehicles.
However, car sales fell 10% to 60,565 units.
And, while car fleet deliveries grew 8.4% to 82,444 units, sales to individuals decreased by 0.8% to 158,282 vehicles.
Mark LaNeve, Ford’s vice president for sales in the United States, said in a statement that “May was an outstanding month for Ford SUVs with a record sales of 74,910 units.”
“In addition, we continue to have strong results from the F Series, with this year’s increase in sales and market share,” LaNeve added.
But apart from Ford, the rest of the top four auto makers in the United States lost consumers in May.
GM, the country’s leading automaker, cut its sales by 1.3% with delivery of 237,364 vehicles; FCA lost 1%, with the sale of 193,040 vehicles; And Toyota limited their losses to 0.5%, with delivery of 218,248 vehicles.
Despite the month’s losses, GM was optimistic about the market outlook.
Kurt McNeil, GM’s vice president of US sales, said, “As the industry tilts more toward SUVs, we are well positioned to take advantage of this dynamic.”
McNeil underscored that home sales of General Motors SUVs increased by 19% in May, and anticipated that they will continue to increase in the coming months with the arrival of new models.
“We hope these launches will allow us to continue to gain market share among individuals with the introduction of more compact mid-size new buggies,” McNeil said.
Toyota also took an optimistic stand.
Jack Hollis, Toyota’s vice president and general manager, said, “although less than last year, the automotive sector continues to enjoy a solid year in 2017, with the light truck in the light.”
Behind the four major manufacturers, the Nissan group (Nissan and Infiniti) increased sales by 3%, to 137,471 vehicles; And the Honda group, 0.9%, with 148,414 vehicles delivered.
Meanwhile, the Hyundai-Kia group lost 11.5% of its sales: Hyundai fell 15.5%, with the sale of 60,011 vehicles; And Kia, 7%, with 58,507 units.
The Volkswagen brand (VW) gained 4.3% with the sale of 30,014 vehicles, while Audi advanced 2.5% with 19,197 units.
Another German manufacturer, the BMW group (BMW, Mini and Rolls Royce) lost 11.1%, with 29,988 units sold.