Fleet sales, which have boosted new-vehicle deliveries all year, fell for the first time in October due to the Detroit-based auto union strikes, while retail sales rose, Cox Automotive says.
Cox’s analysis of Bobit data shows sales into large commercial, government and rental fleets combined fell more than 10% year-over-year to about 162,600. It blamed a big drop in the big three Detroit-focused automakers’ production due to the United Auto Workers strikes.
When broken down by segment, sales into commercial fleets dropped 21%, to rental fleets 7%, while those into government fleets actually rose by 31%.
Cox said Nissan’s fleet sales fared the best in October, while Ford’s fell the most.
Meanwhile, retail sales picked up a little, Cox says. “Our shopping data suggests some buyers came into the market early in October as the strike was getting underway, hopeful to buy before inventories dried up and prices climbed further,” said Cox Senior Economist Charlie Chesbrough.
When fleet sales into dealer and manufacturer supplies are included, October retail sales were up an estimated 3.3% for a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 13.4 million. That’s up by 0.9 million year-over-year and by half a million from September.
Originally posted on Auto Dealer Today