News Column

Detroit Big 3 Auto Sales Rose in May

June 3, 2014

Nathan Bomey, Detroit Free Press

2014 Jeep Cherokee (Chrysler Group)
2014 Jeep Cherokee (Chrysler Group)

June 03--Each of the Detroit Three reported better May sales than a year ago in the U.S., with Chrysler leading the way with a 17% increase, while General Motors and Ford rose 13% and 3%, respectively.

Nissan posted a 19% increase, led by sales of more than 36,000 Altimas. Toyota's sale were up 13% from a year earlier.

Other automakers will report throughout the day.

May marked Chrysler's 50th consecutive month of sales increases, and its best May since 2007. General Motors sees virtually no negative impact on new vehicle sales from its record wave of recalls. Ford's modest gain was fueled by a record month for the Fusion sedan.

"Our Jeep sport-utility vehicles and Ram pickups continued to do well in May as our dealers reported brisk May sales over five weekends and the Memorial Day holiday," said Reid Bigland, head of U.S. sales, in a statement.

Jeep posted a 58% increase, led by 15,992 sales of the new Cherokee, which was not available for sale at this time last year. Ram truck sales jumped 19%.

Dodge eked out a 3% increase, while the Fiat brand rose 18% and the Chrysler brand fell 22%. The company said it started selling the redesigned 2015 Chrysler 200 in May, with a larger volume of sales expected by May as deliveries ramp up. The vehicle is made at Chrysler's Sterling Heights assembly plant.

For GM, Chevrolet sales rose 14%, Buick was up 11%, GMC rose 8% and Cadillac increased 6%.

Although the company is facing a torrent of negative publicity over its failure to fix defective ignition switches, headlines have not stopped consumers from buying GM cars.

The Cruze compact sedan posted a 40.5% increase to 32,393 units. The company's vital full-size pickup trucks rose 9% collectively to 59,344 units.

Sales of Ford's F-series pickup trucks fell 4% to 68,520. The company's Escape SUV rose 9.5% to 31,896, and the Fusion sedan rose 15% to 33,881.Sales of Ford's F-series pickup trucks fell 4% to 68,520. And the company's Fusion sedan rose 15% to 33,881.

Lincoln sales rose 21%.

Contact Nathan Bomey: 313-223-4743 or nbomey@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @NathanBomey.

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Original headline: GM sales up 13% in May despite recalls; Chrysler up 17% with record Jeep month; Ford up 3%


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