Toyota, Honda, Ford, General Motors, Nissan and Volkswagen all posted strong monthly U.S. sales numbers, confirming expectations that a boost in sales from hurricane-ravaged Texas would push the industry to a September rebound.
GM reported Tuesday, Oct. 3 that sales rose 11.9 percent, while Ford sales rose 8.7 percent. Toyota posted a 14.9 percent increase, while Nissan sales were up 9.5 percent and Honda sales rose 6.8 percent. Volkswagen said its sales rose 33.2 percent over numbers that were depressed a year ago by its diesel emissions cheating scandal.
Locally, Mazda North American Operations in Irvine reported total U.S. sales of 25,738 vehicles, an uptick of 3.4 percent vs. September of last year.
Hyundai Motor America was due to report later today.
Of companies reporting early Tuesday, only Fiat Chrysler reported a sales decline. The Italian-American automaker posted a 10 percent drop on what it said was a planned reduction of sales to rental car companies
Industry analysts had predicted a strong month due to Labor Day weekend deals and a small boost from owners replacing cars damaged by hurricanes in Texas and Florida. The auto website Edmunds.com expects overall sales to rise 0.4 percent from last year, but early indications pointed to a stronger increase.
Overall industry sales fell 2.7 percent through the first eight months of the year and were off 1.9 percent in August as Hurricane Harvey battered Texas. Then in September, Irma hit Florida, where many dealerships were forced to close for a week or longer due to lack of electric power.
Ford gained 5,000 to 6,000 sales from replacement of flooded cars in the Houston area, where it offered employee pricing. But it lost about 1,000 in Florida due to closed dealerships, Vice President of Sales and Marketing Mark LaNeve said on a conference call. He expects industry sales to get a boost through the rest of the year from cars being replaced due to hurricane damage.
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