Detroit Automakers’ ‘clunkers’ Sales Fall to 41%

Posted: August 22, 2009 in News

Foreign manufacturers widened their lead in overall “cash for clunkers” sales, with Toyota Motor Corp. increasing its share of overall sales.

Detroit’s Three automakers’ share of sales fell from 42.1 percent as of Aug. 14 to just 41 percent as of this morning in the $3 billion program.

Toyota had 19.2 percent of all clunker sales — up 0.3 percentage points over last week’s tally — compared with 17.7 percent for General Motors Co., which was up 0.1 percentage point.

Ford Motor Co. was in third with 15 percent, a decline of 0.4 percentage point, followed by Honda Motor Co. with 13.2 percent.

Chrysler Group LLC, which initially claimed 10.6 percent in the early weeks of the program, has plummeted to 8.3 percent, followed by Nissan Motor Co. with 7.8 percent in sixth.

Korean automakers Hyundai was in seventh with 6.8 percent, followed by Kia with 3.8 percent.

The Toyota Corolla remains the top-selling vehicle in the program, followed by the Honda Civic, Ford Focus FWD and Toyota Camry. But the Hyundai Elantra jumped to the top five for the first time, and the Toyota Prius fell to sixth.

Rounding out the top 10 are the Nissan Versa, Ford Escape FWD, Honda Fit, and Honda CR-V 4WD.

The Transportation Department noted that 54 percent of the top 10 new vehicles purchased under the program were manufactured in the U.S.: the Corolla, Focus FWD, Camry, Ford Escape FWD, and Honda CR-V 4WD.

Hybrid vehicles account for 4.5 percent of new vehicles purchased under the program compared to 3 percent of June 2009 new vehicle sales.

A total of 77 percent of hybrid-vehicle purchasers traded in an SUV or pickup truck.

To date, 84 percent of trade-ins under the program are light trucks, and 59 percent of new vehicle purchases are cars.

The average fuel economy of vehicles purchased under the program is 25 miles per gallon, compared to 15.8 percent for the average clunker, for an overall improvement of 9.2 mpg, or 58 percent.

The top 10 clunkers remained pickups, SUVs and minivans from U.S. manufacturers.

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