Black Friday helps Honda post an 11% gain
Black Friday deals likely helped lift November auto sales, as a bumper crop of old model-year vehicles spurred carmakers to offer record discounts.
Total light-vehicle sales probably ran at an adjusted annualized rate of 17.5 million in November, a touch better than 17.4 million a year ago, according to a projection by LMC Automotive and J.D. Power. The market researchers expect industry deliveries to drop to 16.8 million in 2020, from about 17.1 million this year.
To move older model year vehicles from dealer lots, automakers boosted incentive spending by an estimated 12% to $4,538 per vehicle in November, J.D. Power estimated last week, exceeding $4,500 for the first time. Those discounts, plus the later date for this year’s Thanksgiving holiday, was expected to spur some of the best Black Friday deals in years, according to car-shopping researcher Edmunds.
Detroit’s three major manufacturers have stopped reporting monthly numbers, so tallies for November won’t include official figures from General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. or Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV. Other automakers, mostly foreign brands, generated about 56% of U.S. new-vehicle sales in the first half of the year.
Here are highlights from the automakers that are reporting results for last month:
Trucks are Honda’s Heroes
Honda Motor Co. sales soared 11% in November to 133,952 vehicles, paced by demand for sport utility vehicles and trucks.
The automaker’s top-seller, the CR-V crossover, had a record month, and deliveries of the smaller HR-V more than doubled. Sales of the Ridgeline pickup climbed 31%.
Hybrids Power Toyota
Toyota Motor Corp.’s U.S. deliveries jumped 9.2% to 207,857 vehicles, led by a 26% increase for its biggest-volume model, the RAV4 compact SUV. The Tacoma mid-size truck and Camry and Corolla sedans also had strong showings.
The Japanese automaker said nearly a quarter of its 44,665 RAV4 sales were gasoline-electric models. Sales of all Toyota- and Lexus-brand hybrids surged 65% to 27,274 vehicles – about 13% of total U.S. deliveries.
Hyundai Leans on SUVs
South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co. reported a solid 6.2% rise in November sales to 60,601 vehicles, its 15th gain in the last 16 months.
SUVs including the compact Tuscon and mid-size Santa Fe and Palisade models led the way, but its hybrid and electric vehicles are also on the ascent, soaring 78% for the month.