Pulled by Jeep, Chrysler Leads Detroit Three Pack

By Joel Arellano | August 02, 2011
In June this year, Ford led its domestic rivals in the largest sales increase compared to its June 2010 sales. For July Chrysler Company LLC has taken the lead with overall sales up 20 percent versus the same period last year. An analysis of the three automakers shows specific brands led the surge in sales for each automaker. Chevrolet, not surprisingly, lead GM's July sales with fuel-efficient models most sought by consumers and even fleet managers. Yet Ford's luxury brand Lincoln experienced the strongest growth compared to last year, with the MKZ sedan accounting for most of the sales. And it was the Jeep division, not Chrysler, which heavily contributed to Chrysler's strong July sales. Much of Jeep's success can be attributed to its lineup, which has been heavily refreshed for 2011, especially the all-new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Ford: While Ford Motor Company saw a 20-percent year-over-year sales jump in June, July was not as kind to the Blue Oval brand. For July, totals sales amounted to 180,865, up just 9 percent versus the same time period last year. July 2011 sales leaders were crossovers and SUVs (up 43 percent) and—surprisingly—Lincoln sales (up 40 percent).
  • Ford sold 5,296 Fiesta compacts, up 58 percent from July 2010.
  • The Ford Crown Victoria, scheduled to be discontinued in 2012, saw strong fleet sales at 62 percent compared to July 2010.
  • Sales for the Escape compact SUV surged more than 66 percent.
  • Sales of the Explorer SUV grew 107 percent compared to July 2010, with sales totaling 9,897 for July.
  • Lincoln MKZ led the brand's surge with July sales up 80 percent compared to same time period in 2010.
General Motors: Once again, fuel-efficient models drove GM's July sales, but this time, crossover and truck sales contributed to the total of 214,915 vehicles sold, an 8 percent increase compared to the same period last year.
  • Total sales of the Chevy Cruze amounted to 24,648. Demand for Chevy Cruze Eco comprised 19 percent of Cruze retail sales for July.
  • Retail sales of Chevy Equinox SUV surged 75 percent.
  • Retail sales of the all-new Buick Regal were more than double from 2010, with 33 percent stemming from sales of the Buick Regal Turbo.
  • Retail sales of the GMC Terrain rose 67 percent compared to last year.
  • Cadillac CTS sales rose 42 percent compared to July 2010. However, total and retail Cadillac sales dropped 26 percent versus July 2010; GM attributes exceptionally strong sales in July 2010 and 20 percent drop in fleet sales in July 2011 possibly contributing to drop.
Chrysler: Like its domestic rivals, the Chrysler Group LLC, saw overall sales rise back in June. For the month of July, Jeep led the rest of the brands with an incredible 46 percent surge in sales for July.
  • The heavily refreshed 2011 Chrysler 300 and Chrysler 200 sedans led the Chrysler brand sales, which rose five percent in July.
  • Sales of the refreshed Jeep Compass crossover rose a staggering 240 percent compared to July 2010 sales.
  • The Jeep Grand Cherokee continues strong sales at 76 percent versus July 2010 sales.
  • The Dodge Caliber experienced sales growth of 14 percent compared to last year.
  • Fiat saw sales of its 500 compact rise 68 percent since June 2011.
Source: General Motors, Ford, Jeep