Ram P/U Sales: 58 Consecutive Months Of U.S. Sales Growth In Context

“Sales of the Ram pickup truck were up 7 percent in February; its 58th-consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains.” - FCA US LLC press release, March 3, 2015.

What do 58 consecutive months of year-over-year U.S. sales improvement look like? This chart is one way of looking at it. Ever since May 2010, Ram P/U sales have been on the rise. Most recently, this translated to a 24% year-over-year increase in calendar year 2014, a 14% jump in January 2015, and a 7% improvement last month.

No high-volume vehicle has even approached the level of consistent growth achieved by the Ram P/U, America’s third-best-selling vehicle line. The Audi brand’s 50 consecutive months of year-over-year improvement and 19 consecutive months of monthly sales records is similar, powered by an expansion of its model range, greater interest in entry-level luxury, and steadily improving brand image. Indeed, the Ram P/U’s parent company, FCA (née Chrysler Group) has posted consecutive U.S. year-over-year sales increases in every month going back to April 2010.

Auto News For Friday, March 27, 2015 - New Kia Optima, New Scion IA

Kia Optima
Here are seven must-read, must-watch auto news stories, reviews, and videos for Friday, March 27, 2015.

FUTURE 
The next Kia Optima appears to be a sufficiently effective evolution of the current Kia Optima. We’ll see much more when the car drops at the New York auto show next month. 

MORE FUTURE 
AutoGuide has pictures of the upcoming Scion iA, which is fairly awkward to say: eye-eh. It’s basically the next-gen Mazda 2 in sedan form.  

YET MORE FUTURE 
The Ford Focus RS won’t go on sale in North America for another year, Road & Track says. 

INSIDE THE AUTO BUSINESS 
Nick Bunkley, always worth a read at Automotive News, reports on the month of March from an auto sales perspective, which likely wasn’t as healthy as March 2014.  

2015 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ Review - Wait For It... Wait For It...

2015 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ
The Malibu was pretty good. It looked good. It drove nicely enough. It sold in decent numbers.

But that was between 2008 and 2012.

THE GOOD
• A new one's on its way

• A 2.0T is available
• Decent ride quality
• Attractive front end
• Chevy also makes Cruze, Impala
THE BAD
• Small back seat
• Laggy MyLink
• Dreadful stop-start system
• Cartoonish design elements
• Coarse 2.5L

The 2013 Malibu wasn’t so great. It didn’t look good. It didn’t drive so nicely. It wasn’t very pleasant inside. It didn’t sell so well.

But with the speed of a cat lover furiously favouriting tweets of bathing felines, GM refreshed the Malibu for the 2014 model year. Verdict: the refresh was inadequate.

2015 Ford Fusion Titanium MyFordTouch Video - Is This Laggy?

2015 Ford Fusion Titanium AWD EcoBoost
We don't like waiting. When I press a button on my iPhone, I better see the next screen before I can even think that I'm not seeing the next screen.

Yes, I grew up in the days of computers that were labelled 286 or, ooh la la, 486. We ran Windows 3.1. There was a time when even Firefox seemed quick. By those ancient standards, a modern car's infotainment unit might seem downright supersonic. But this isn't 1989. Or 2003. It's 2015, and MyFordTouch's "Loading..." icon is immensely irritating.

Auto News For Thursday, March 26, 2015 - Toyota Announces RAV4 Hybrid

Toyota Rav4 Hybrid
Here are six must-read, must-watch auto news stories, reviews, and videos for Thursday, March 26, 2015. 

FUTURE 
Debuting at the New York auto show next month, Toyota has announced that there will be a hybrid added to the RAV4 lineup for the 2016 model year. In a segment utterly devoid of hybrids - Ford once sold a high-profile Escape Hybrid, however - the RAV4 will have the market cornered. 

REVIEW 
Car & Driver tests the manual-trans, EcoBoost powered, 2015 Mustang and finds it’s no quicker than the V6 car.