Midsize Car Sales And Midsize Luxury Car Sales In America – August 2010

Car sales were down 31% in the United States in August. “Down 31%” is a figure which goes back to August 2009, a month in which Cash For Clunkers stimulated car sales rather effectively. Whether Cash For Clunkers did anything to keep the industry alive or “green up” America’s car fleet I know not, but new car sales shot through the roof. Without Cash For Clunkers, August 2010 had no chance of looking good. But even with these facts in mind, certain vehicles aren’t able to hide their lackluster performances behind the Cash For Clunkers shadow.

Let’s look at the stunning 2011 Buick Regal. She is a beauty. Of course, beauty is only skin-deep. Fortunately the 2011 Regal is also a pleasant car to drive, even if you want to give’er a little in the twisties. Nevertheless, the Regal’s sales growth has been suspended; hopefully temporarily. From 150 U.S. sales in May to 321 U.S. sales in June to 1703 U.S. Sales in July, the new Regal was showing signs of catching on. But then August’s Sales Stats came in and Regal sales totalled just 1704, a gain of 1, as you can see in the Graph below. Interestingly, Buick can’t blame a slow sales month for the growth suspension. See, sales of the Buick Enclave, Buick LaCrosse, and Buick Lucerne improved compared to last August. Even without the 2011 Regal, Buick sales rose by 2274 units. 
And if a chart which contrasts the Regal’s poor sales with high-volume midsize sedans isn’t fair to your eyes, scroll down to see supposedly lower-volume midsize luxury sedans, vehicles which are marketed at a much higher price point. The Mercedes-Benz E-Class beat the Regal by 4178 sales. The Acura TSX, Buick’s target for the Regal? Acura nabbed over 2400 buyers for their smallest sedan. Perhaps there is a stock issue for General Motors; perhaps the naturally-aspirated 4-cylinder’s price doesn’t make for favourable comparisons with the larger LaCrosse. (That’s sort of what The Good Car Guy said regarding Canadian Sales Stats last month.)One way or another, Regal sales should rise in the future. Present stagnation is most likely a blip on the radar. Or so Buick hopes.
  1. I wonder if the now increased capacity at the Sonata Alabama plant will help it catch up to the Accord. They built nearly 11,000 more vehicles in August over July now the Santa Fe has moved to the Kia plant.
    However, we could see a drop in Santa Fe sales for a while as limited production doesn't get going till Sept 27 and only 31 were built in August – 2 month production lost!

  2. Whether the Sonata gets teh jump on the Accord and Camry soon…. who knows. Sonata will be the best seller for the whole year before 2013 is my guess.

  3. I wonder when will the Outback be considered in the crossover category. Its looking more SUV-ish with the last remodel and it rides higher than a Legacy.

  4. That's a good point @Matthew S. The Outback and Toyota Venza and Honda Accord Crosstour all have their sales counted here but could just as easily be thrown into another category. Then, of course, people would be wondering why they're not counted with cars. Toyota counts the Venza as one of its cars, however. Honda lists Accord Crosstour sales within the Accord's total. And the Outback? It's hard for me to see how we can so quickly shake its history of being a tall Legacy wagon Legacy and label it as a CUV/SUV.

  5. I wonder when will the Outback be considered in the crossover category. Its looking more SUV-ish with the last remodel and it rides higher than a Legacy.

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