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Old 09-01-2009, 01:52 PM   #1
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Clunkers boosts Ford sales; GM, Chrysler fall

By KIMBERLY S. JOHNSON and DAN STRUMPF, AP Auto Writers Kimberly S. Johnson And Dan Strumpf, Ap Auto Writers – 14 mins ago
DETROIT – The popular Cash for Clunkers program boosted Ford Motor Co.'s U.S. sales in August by 17.2 percent over last year, but shortages of smaller vehicles weighed on rivals Chrysler Group LLC and General Motors Co.

The program, which ended on Aug. 24, drew hordes of buyers into quiet showrooms by offering up to $4,500 toward new, more fuel-efficient cars and trucks. The hefty rebates gave automakers and dealers a much-needed lift, spurring 690,114 new sales, many of them during August, at a taxpayer cost of $2.88 billion.

Other automakers are expected to release U.S. sales figures later Tuesday. Combined, the results are likely to mark the first year-over-year monthly sales gain since October 2007.

Ford sold 181,826 cars and light trucks compared with 115,117 in August 2008, when high gas prices and growing economic uncertainty kept people away from showrooms.

Two of Ford's vehicles — theFocus and Escape — were among the top selling cars under the clunkers program. Sales of the Focus rose 56 percent while those of the Escape crossover vehicle climbed 49 percent.

Meanwhile, low supplies of fuel-efficient vehicles at Chrysler kept the automaker from benefiting more from the clunkers program, whose rebates encouraged customers to buy gas sippers in exchange for guzzlers with gas mileage of 18 mpg or less.

Chrysler sales fell 15 percent to 93,222 units.

Going into August, five of Chrysler's most efficient vehicles were already at low inventory levels. Those vehicles — the Dodge Caliber, the Chrysler Sebring, the Jeep Patriot, the Jeep Compass and the Dodge Avenger — all qualified as Cash for Clunkers purchases.

To make up for the shortfalls, Chrysler is boosting production by 50,000 vehicles of most of its vehicles through the end of the year.

At General Motors Co., sales fell 20 percent to 245,550. GM said its inventory levels hit an all-time low of 379,000 during August.

GM vehicles like the Chevrolet Aveo subcompact, the Cobalt sedan and Equinox crossover got a lift from the clunkers program. No GM vehicles made the closely watched list of top-10 Cash for Clunkers sales, but they had the largest market share behind Japan's Toyota Motor Corp.

GM also said it was extending through the end of September its test program selling vehicles on eBay.

Consumers are expected to steer clear of dealers this autumn now that the clunker rebates are no longer available.

___

Dan Strumpf reported from New York.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090901/.../us_auto_sales


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Old 09-01-2009, 02:27 PM   #2
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Go Ford!

Really I love what ford has been doing. Redesigning the focus, bringing back the Taurus with that EcoBoost engine, Redesigning the mustang which I think looks great, still producing the awesomely fast, special edition mustangs, making the SVT raptor......I really just think they are going in the right direction!
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Old 09-01-2009, 02:41 PM   #3
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Consumers are expected to steer clear of dealers this autumn now that the clunker rebates are no longer available.
I don't know about GM and Chrysler but Ford simply isn't dealing now. The car industry just took what would have been a year worth of sales in just a few months- it'll be interesting how they fair until the spring.

I'm frustrated there's not a practical Ford in the family budget this time around for the lease.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:10 PM   #4
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Yes go Ford, no bailout money. Long live the Focus.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:16 PM   #5
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Yes go Ford, no bailout money. Long live the Focus.
Like I told the salesman, I wanted to buy from a domestic car company that didn't sell it's soul to the Devil, lol.
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Old 09-02-2009, 03:42 PM   #6
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Calvin, my thoughts exactly...or switch their mining purposes outside the US.
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Old 09-02-2009, 05:00 PM   #7
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It gives me that warm feeling in my heart.
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Old 09-02-2009, 06:45 PM   #8
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Go Ford!! i guess Chrysler/Fiat LLC and Government Motors couldn't stand up.
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Old 09-02-2009, 06:55 PM   #9
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one of the reasons i have more respect for ford and i'm glad they did well is the buyout!! good job! no gov. money for us thank you very much!
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