SANTA MONICA, Calif. — TrueCar.com, the authority on new car pricing, trends and forecasting, this week released its February 2012 sales and incentives forecast. The forecast shows the following:
- For February 2012, new light vehicle sales in the U.S. (including fleet) is expected to be 1,088,321 units, up 9.6 percent from February 2011 and up 19.2 percent from January 2012 (on an unadjusted basis)
- The February 2012 forecast translates into a Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Rate (SAAR) of 14.3 million new car sales, up from 13.3 million in February 2011 and up from 14.2 million in January 2012
- Retail sales are up 5.6 percent compared to February 2011 and up 13.4 percent from January 2012
- Fleet and rental sales are expected to make up 21.5 percent of total industry sales in February 2012
- The industry average incentive spending per unit will be approximately $2,468 in February 2012, which represents a decrease of 4.2 percent from February 2011 and up 0.6 percent from January 2012
- Used car sales* are estimated to be 2,099,298, up 16.5 percent from February 2011 and down 3.1 percent from January 2012. The ratio of new to used is estimated to be 1:2 for February 2012
“The signs for 2012 point to a great period of recovery for automakers as the industry looks at continued growth through the year, ” said Jesse Toprak, Vice President of Industry Trends and Insights for TrueCar.com. “We are upgrading our 2012 forecast to 14.0 million units based on improving consumer demand, better credit availability, and dozens of compelling new products due to arrive at the dealerships this year. The correlation between the stock market and new vehicle sales proved to be extremely strong once again with both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and new vehicle SAAR reaching their highest levels since May 2008 in February.”
Forecasts for the top eight manufacturers for February 2012:
|Manufacturer||February 2012 Forecast||% Change vs. January 2012||% Change vs. February 2011|
|Manufacturer||February 2012 Forecast||January 2012||February 2011|
|Manufacturer||February 2012 Incentives||% Change vs. January 2012||% Change vs. February 2011||Total Spending|
“Consumer interest at TrueCar.com for fuel-efficient models is up 15 percent this month compared to last year, indicating a shift in shopping preferences as gas prices have increased, said Kristen Andersson, Senior Analyst at TrueCar.com. “We expect to see 20 percent increases year-over-year for most hybrid models as well as gas-engine smaller vehicles such as the Ford Focus and Honda Civic.”
TrueCar.com also projects sales down to the brand level, which can be viewed in its entirety at the Truth Blog on TrueCar.com. Brand level incentive spending forecasts are available upon request.
TrueCar.com bases its forecast on actual transaction data. The transaction data based forecast is refined by other current and historical factors that impact vehicle sales, including: sales, inventory, incentives, fuel prices, and macro economic data (major stock market indexes, consumer confidence, new home starts, and CPI). TrueCar.com does not adjust for selling days in year-over-year percentage change calculations.
*Used car sales figures include sales from franchise dealerships, independent dealerships and private party sales
TrueCar, Inc. is an automotive solutions provider focused on changing how cars are sold by providing a significantly better consumer experience while helping qualified dealer partners gain incremental market share and reduce costs. TrueCar is a visual publisher of new and used car transaction data. TrueCar price reports help both dealers and consumers to agree on the parameters of a fair deal by providing an accurate, comprehensive and simple understanding of what others actually paid recently for an identically-equipped vehicle both locally and nationally. TrueCar works with a national network of dealers that provide a no-hassle car buying experience. In addition, TrueCar assists some of the nation’s largest and most well respected membership and service organizations to meet the auto buying needs of their members and customers. TrueCar is headquartered in Santa Monica, CA and has offices in San Francisco, CA and Austin, TX. Since 2006, TrueCar has connected hundreds of thousands of consumers with dealers nationwide resulting in dealers selling over 400,000 vehicles and is developing a suite of products and services centered on radical clarity through the comprehensive analysis of market data and information.
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