February marked the seventh consecutive month that U.S. sales grew for Hyundai, Kia and Subaru, with improved inventory and higher retailing cited for the sales boost.
Not all automakers shared the same tale. Toyota Motor Corp. saw sales volume drop for the second month in a row because of constrained supplies.
February sales slipped 2.4% at Toyota Motor, with volume off 3.6% for the Toyota division but rising 6.1% for Lexus, after 12 consecutive monthly declines for the luxury brand.
The Japanese automaker’s top sellers posted mixed results in February.
- Camry, up 55%
- Corolla, up 7.7%
- RAV4, down 13%
- 4Runner, down 50%
- Highlander, down 18%
- Tundra and Tacoma, up 20%
Toyota reported 132,181 cars and lights trucks in U.S. dealer inventory, at ports or in transit at the close of February. That's up slightly from 130,315 at the end of January and 110,674 in 2021.
Hyundai deliveries rose 8.8% to a record 57,044 for February. Retail sales rose 1% to 52,932, and fleet comprised 7% of overall volume.
Hyundai closed February with 54,156 vehicles in U.S. inventory, up 20% from 45,158 at the close of January and 190% from 18,621 in 2022.
Kia also saw record volumes in February. The automaker reported a 24% increase in sales volume at 60,859. It saw major gains for the Forte, Sportage, Sorento, Telluride and Carnival models.
Subaru’s February volume rose 2.1%, while Mazda deliveries rose 8.8% in February, marking the company’s fifth consecutive monthly increase. Mazda reported a 20-day supply of vehicles, or 24,215 cars and light trucks.
Genesis also set a February sales record, with U.S. sales increasing 21% to 4,208, including higher crossover and GV60 electric crossover deliveries.
U.S. light-vehicle sales are forecasted to rise 3.9% to 7.2% in February, according to analysis by J.D. Power-LMC Automotive, Cox Automotive, TrueCar and S&P Global Mobility. The analysts predict higher fleet deliveries will offset flatter retail volume.
J.D. Power expects February fleet shipments to hit 209,200, a 54% year-over-year increase, J.D. Power estimates. The analyst predicts fleet sales will represent 19% of total light-vehicle volume.
Honda Motor Co., Ford Motor Co. and Volvo will report results later this week. The remaining automakers report U.S. sales quarterly.
Originally posted on Auto Dealer Today