Auto makers post mixed sales results in March despite cheap gas prices

by / Tuesday, 05 April 2016 / Published in Economy

Nathan Andrada – Fourth Estate Contributor

New York, NY, United States (4E) – Car makers posted mixed sales results last month, as all three Detroit auto makers saw their sales miss analysts’ estimates in March, while Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp. surprisingly posted a decline in sales.

U.S. new vehicle sales rose by almost 10 percent to $ 55bn in March, according to data provider TrueCar Inc. The average transaction prices climbed 2 percent to $32,887 in March, TrueCar said.

Despite low gasoline prices resulting to higher demand for SUVs and pickups, sales at GM, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Ford Motor Co. all missed estimates in March.

GM’s sales gain was less than 1 percent, while Ford’s light-vehicle sales rose 7.8 percent to 253,064. Sales by Fiat Chrysler in the U.S. jumped 8.1 percent last month, due to strong sales of its Jeep SUVs and Ram pickups.

Sales of Toyota Motor Corp. dropped 2.7 percent due to weak demand for its coupes and sedans, while Nissan Motor Co. posted a 13 percent rise in sales.

Volkswagen AG sales tumbled by over 10 percent as the German car giant continues struggle in the wake of the diesel emissions-cheating scandal.

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