- For February 2011, new light vehicle sales in the U.S. (including fleet) is expected to be 924,516 units, up 19 percent from February 2010 and up 13 percent from January 2011 (on an unadjusted basis)
- The February 2011 forecast translates into a Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Rate (SAAR) of 12.5 million new car sales, down slightly from 12.61 million in January 2011 and up significantly from 10.41 million in February 2010
- Retail sales are up 12 percent compared to January 2011 and up 27 percent from February 2010
- Fleet and rental sales are expected to make up 20 percent of total industry sales in February 2011
- The industry average incentive spending per unit will be approximately $2,708 in February 2011, which represents an increase of five percent from January 2011 and down less than one percent from February 2010
- Used car sales is estimated to be 1,710,750, down 15 percent from January 2011 and up six percent from February 2010. The ratio of new to used is estimated to be 3:1 for February 2011
"We are finally seeing some consistency in new car sales with SAAR above the 12 million range over the past five months," said Jesse Toprak, VP of Industry Trends and Insight for TrueCar.com. "With solid demand in the marketplace, SAAR will continue to stay at or above its current rate for the rest of the year."
"Unlike GM of the past decade, the new GM's increased incentive spending has been well calculated," said TrueCar.com's Toprak. "If GM is able to increase their sales volume by over 30 percent while increasing incentive spend by 10 percent, they should do that every month."
Toprak continues, "Toyota's increase was helped by the automaker being at the epicenter of their recall crises last year and before their incentives push. Toyota will have a hard time increasing market share until later this year, when new models are expected to hit the showroom floor."