CHICAGO — Analysts at Cars.com, the premier online resource for buying and selling new and used vehicles, are predicting a significant increase in sales for the newly redesigned 2013 Nissan Altima, which could make the Altima the best-selling sedan in the U.S. Based on an analysis of marketplace trends, historical sales data and the competitive landscape, Cars.com predicts a 39 percent jump in Altima sales year-over-year.
“Overall, with the improving economy, we expect 2012 new car sales to jump roughly 15 percent over 2011,” said Kelsey Mays, Cars.com Automotive Analyst. “Taking the redesign of the Altima into account, we’d expect the 2013 Altima to outsell its 2012 predecessor by 39 percent by year’s end, 24 percentage points above our expected market growth.”
According to Mays, this is good and bad news for Nissan. “Our research of the last five years of sales shows that the average redesign of top-selling cars results in a 30 percent increase in sales above market growth, so at 24 percent the Altima would underperform the market average,” said Mays. “This isn’t a particularly radical redesign and competition in the family sedan category will be incredibly fierce this fall. That said, this new Altima will be a boon for Nissan dealers and should bring a lot of new shoppers into showrooms.”
Mays also believes the Altima has an opportunity to take the title as the best-selling sedan in the U.S., a spot held by the Toyota Camry for 10 years*. “Last year Nissan sold 268,981* Altimas, while Toyota moved 308,510* Camrys. But, through March, Nissan had closed the gap for 2012 to fewer than 10,000. Even though the Camry was redesigned for 2012, a mixture of marketing push and momentum for the Altima could lift it above the Camry.”
Car shoppers may also see deals on both cars toward the end of the year, predicts Mays. “If the two sedans end up in a tight sales race, you should expect to see good offers from Nissan and Toyota dealers as the two battle it out for the ‘Best Selling Car’ title.”
The 2013 Nissan Altima goes on sale in July with a starting MRSP of $21,500.
Founded in 1998, Cars.com is an award-winning online destination for car shoppers that offers information from consumers and experts to help buyers formulate opinions on what to buy, where to buy and how much to pay for a car. Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including A.H. Belo (NYSE: AHC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company and The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).