Ford and General Motors posted their first “bad” news in a while in March. Fiat Chrysler continued its growth, continuing its streak of consecutive months with year-over-year sales gains to 60. It’s been a good five years for the automaker.
Still, their gains were disappointing at 1.7% compared to imports like Hyundai (11.9%), Subaru (10.4%) and Toyota (4.4%).
“March was a tough month, yet we were able to extend our year-over-year sales streak,” said Reid Bigland, head of U.S. sales for FCA US. “Five years of consecutive monthly year-over-year sales increases is a great symbol of FCA’s commitment to continuous improvement and a tremendous source of pride for our entire organization.”
It’s no surprise that economic numbers across the nation showed signs of slowing after two years of strong growth. The automotive industry is one that is heavily tied to the conditions of the economy. When jobs are good, people buy cars. When job numbers drop, people tend to hold off. New car dealers across the country are pushing for a stronger April.
Not all of the news was bad for Ford, who saw their new Explorer pick up 17% and the redesigned Mustang soar by 36%. Jeep was a beacon for the company as it has been for over a year, posting a 23% surge in growth that follows a record-breaking year.
According to Automotive News:
The Jeep Cherokee and Patriot had their best-ever monthly sales, while the Wrangler and Compass set sales records for the month of March. The subcompact Jeep Renegade, which began arriving at dealerships late in the month, posted its first U.S. sales.