SUVs, CUVs will soon be half of US vehicle market, Ford exec says

SUVs, CUVs will soon be half of US vehicle market, Ford exec says

Sport-utility vehicles (SUVs) and crossover utility vehicles (CUVs) could soon make up half of the U.S. vehicle market, said Ford executive Mark LaNeve at the New York Auto Show, according to They reached 40 percent in 2016 and have continued to climb this year. LaNeve, the head of Fordês sales, service and marketing, said he expects the figure to reach 45 percent in the next five to seven years. In March, 61 percent of new-vehicle sales were in the larger category of utilities and light trucks.

LaNeve believes two groups will help drive the growth of SUVs: Millennials, who grew up with them and may want their own as they start a family; and baby boomers, who may want a compact SUV or CUV for practical reasons as they downsize from a large sedan.

Todayês utility vehicles, especially CUVs, have a smoother, more carlike ride than SUVs of the past, but still offer off-road capability, LaNeve said. And modern utilities also get better gas mileage and have fuel-saving technologies like Fordês turbocharged EcoBoost engine.

At the NADA/J.D. Power Automotive Forum before the New York Auto Show, John Hinrichs of Americas, Ford Motor Company put the history of SUV sales in perspective. –Letês not forget that 10 years ago, at the dawn of the financial downtown, the trend was dour on trucks and SUVs,” Hinrichs said. –But now, with SUV popularity clearly growing, we need to meet those demands and meet the regulations, and we have.”

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