US new vehicle sales seen to jump 10% in December 2014

Article by Christian A., on January 3, 2015

Forecasters are expecting a 10-percent jump in new-vehicle sales in the United States in December, as big discounts, little snow and lower gasoline prices prompt consumers to flock dealerships. That would mean that total sales in the US for the full year 2014 could hit 16.5 million – surpassing even the most optimistic forecast early in the year. In the first 11 months of 2014, carmakers sold 6-percent more light vehicles to 15,023,111 units.

John Krafcik, president of TrueCar, said in a statement, remarked that carmakers should be “grinning as they close the books this year,” as the industry experience the strongest demand in a decade, gains in highly profitable segments and modest incentive growth.

Sales made until January 2, 2015 are still counted for 2014. Carmakers are expected to report their sales for December on Jan. 5. TrueCar, Kelley Blue Book, Cars.com and LMC Automotive issued December sales forecasts of between 1.49 million and 1.51 million units, which equates to a surge of between 10 percent and 11 percent – paving way for the industry’s best December since 2004 and second best ever.

Such figures would mean a seasonally adjusted annualized selling rate of between 16.7 million and 16.9 million in December, a big jump from 15.5 million SAAR in December last year. Mike Cuva, General Manager of Sunnyside Toyota in North Olmsted, Ohio, told Automotive News that sales since Christmas surged 26 percent compared to the same period in 2013.

He remarked that the week between Christmas and New Year’s is a “week where we do a lot of business for the month.” He noted that aside from a number of “great products” out for launch, the economy has become more stable, prompting more people to buy new cars.

Cuva added that he expects the momentum to continue into 2015. Most forecasters, meanwhile, expect US light-vehicle sales to hit 17 million units next year.

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