CHRYSLER GROUP +11%
Chrysler was able to extend its winning ways in May. All divisions, save Chrysler, were ahead of last year.
With the 200 flat and the Town & Country up only slightly, a drop for the 300 (-18%) put the brand in negative territory.
Although the Chrysler 300 was down, the Charger was up (+23%), so too were the Durango (+24%), the Journey, and the Challenger (both +15%). But the biggest factor was the addition of the Dart.
The Grand Cherokee (+21%) and the Wrangler (+13%) were neck-and-neck for most popular Jeep, with the Wrangler just squeaking to victory. All other Jeeps were up at least a little, which allowed the brand to shrug off the sales lost with the departure of the Liberty.
The big Ram topped 30,000 units, and muscled into 6th place among all nameplates.
Fiat 500 sales have leveled off, for the time being at least.
AMERICAN HONDA +5%
Honda sales increased in May but Acura fell back a bit.
The Accord (+12%) maintained its number two spot among passenger cars, behind the Toyota Camry. The CR-V (+8%) enjoyed its best month ever, but that was likewise only good enough for second place among SUVs. The revamped Civic declined slightly (-10%) but the Fit was up (+20%), as were the Ridgeline, the Pilot, and the Odyssey.
The new RDX (+49%) is doing better than ever but the MDX has dropped off (-43%) in the selldown before the new model arrives. For the RLX, the good news is that sales are outpacing the RL by a factor of 5; the bad news is that the car still only sold 273 copies.
NISSAN NORTH AMERICA +25%
Nissan enjoyed the biggest increase of any of the major automakers, thanks to widely publicized price cuts for several Nissan models.
The new Pathfinder is still on the upswing, with sales triple the old model's. The new Sentra shot up (+65%) and the Leaf suddenly sprouted, quadrupling its year-ago figure. There were laggards, however, including the Cube (-37%), the Maxima (-25%), the Murano (-31%), and the Titan (-35%).
The JXs was up 10% but otherwise it was all downhill sledding for Infiniti.
HYUNDAI - KIA +2%
Both Korean nameplates managed to do better than last year, but it's clear that the period of easy market-share gains is over. For Hyundai, it was the brand's second-best month ever; for Kia, it was the brand's best May.
The Elantra was up by a third, and the new Santa Fe just beat last year, but all other Hyundais were down, although the brand cited low inventories.
The Optima, Rio, and Soul were in the black, while the Forte and the SUVs were down. The Cadenza just started arriving in dealerships and was not a significant factor.