The Detroit 3 automakers completely dominate the pickup segment with 91% of the sales. Americans have been moving towards smaller vehicles but 20% of the Detroit 3's sales are pickups.
Foreign carmakers are of course now capitalizing on small-car sales but if the Detroit 3 want profits, they will have to fully exploit the full-size truck segment.
Most pickup trucks sell for more than $30,000, which give carmakers a much larger profit margin than when small cars are sold.
The slowed economy and higher fuel costs have greatly affected the full-size truck segment. As the housing market rebounds, it has been observed that truck sales are going up too. It's believed that this is because contractors are now prompted to buy work vehicles.
George Pipas, a sales analyst at Ford, said that the full-size pickup segment are "very dependent" on the level of construction and new housing starts. When industry sales were reported to drop by almost 24%, truck sales fell by 31%.
US automakers then had to resort to offering more than $4,000 in incentives to speed up sales. However, in 2010, industry analysts are predicting an increase in truck sales.
Pipas, who is excited about the upcoming Fiesta, said that the F-series trucks will be "Ford's best-selling vehicle for years and years and years to come."
Here are more numbers for you to think about. The number one selling vehicle in America since 1982 has been the F-series. Pickup trucks, through November, have accounted for a 10.8% of the total passenger vehicle market share. Pickup truck sales peaked in 2005 with 15.2%. [via detroitfreepress]