March adds gas to rosy car sales forecasts


2013 is expected to be a big year for the automotive industry, and according to TrueCar, results expected for March are falling into line with the predictions. Sales are up significantly both month-over-month and year-over-year.

Sales are expected to beat February levels by 23.1% unadjusted, to 1,466,956 units. Perhaps the more important comparison, however, is the direct one to March 2012, and that represents a healthy 4.5% increase.

The expectations for the full year have now risen from February’s 15.4M to 15.42M, a marginal gain of 20K, but a gain nonetheless.

TrueCar estimates that used cars sales during March will exceed 2.89M, not quite double the total of new car sales.

“The rally in the stock market, improved availability of auto financing and compelling new products continued to propel new car sales in March,” said Jesse Toprak , senior analyst for “The Domestic ‘Big Three’ will all have their highest level of sales in over four years thanks to their much improved lineup of vehicles.”

Here is TrueCar’s chart of sales expectations for eight major manufacturers:

Make 3/13 forecast % v. 2/13 % v. 3/12
Chrysler 170,091 22.4% 4.1%
Ford 232,494 19.0% 4.3%
GM 261,141 16.4% 13.0%
Honda 139,870 29.5% 10.1%
Hyundai/Kia 113,973 21.5% -10.4%
Nissan 136,604 37.1% 0.2%
Toyota 206,708 24.2% 1.7%
Volkswagen 53,027 25.3% 10.1%
Industry 1,466,956 23.1% 4.5%
Source: TrueCar      

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