July sales show 16.4 m. SAAR; 17 m. sales seen in future years

July sales show 16.4 m. SAAR; 17 m. sales seen in future years

July sales rose 9 percent, yielding a 16.4 million seasonally adjusted annual rate, the fourth month this year with a SAAR more than 16 million. Economists are optimistic about sales for the rest of the year, with NADA forecasting 16.4 million sales this year and 16.77 million in 2015.

Among the major automakers, Fiat/Chrysler saw the most growth year to date, at 13.3 percent. In July, Chrysler Group sales soared 20 percent. Toyota Motor sales were up 6 percent year to date, helped by a robust 12 percent rise for the month. Even though Ford was up 10 percent for the month, it was outsold by Toyota. With crossover sales booming, RAV4 sales jumped 37 percent. Nissan sales rose 12.6 percent year to date, 11 percent in July. Ford Motor sales were down just a hair year to date. Figures are from NADA/Wardês.

Crossovers continue to sell well at 26.6 percent of the market YTD, up from 25 percent last year. Another trend is the rise in leasing, which made up 25 percent of July sales, Kelley Blue Book senior analyst Alec Gutierrez told the Detroit Free Press.

Continued pent-up demand, available financing, an increase in home values and an improved job market help analysts remain optimistic about future sales. Economists at the Center for Automotive Researchês Management Briefing Seminars last week forecast sales of 17 million for the next few years, reports the Detroit News.

The top 10 best selling vehicles in July were: Ford F-Series, Chevrolet Silverado, Toyota Camry, Ram Pickup, Honda Accord, Toyota Corolla/Matrix, Honda Civic, Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Nissan Altima.

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