By Patrick Manzi, NADA Chief Economist

New light-vehicle sales in January were close to flat compared to this time last year. January’s SAAR of 16.84 million units represents an increase of 0.8%. However, raw sales numbers of 1.130 million units represent a slight decline of 0.2%. Light trucks represented more than 75% of all new light vehicles sold, and the red-hot crossover segment claimed 43.4% of the total market. We expect to see light-truck sales continue to account for three-quarters of the market for the rest of the year. After an all-time record-breaking month of average incentive spending per unit in December 2019, incentive spending decreased this January—though it may still set a new record for the month of January overall. A forecast from J.D. Power and LMC Automotive said that incentives in January topped $4,000 per unit, a first for the month of January. Incentives will likely remain elevated in February, as automakers continue to offer large discounts to help clear out dealer lots of 2019 model year inventory. We expect new-vehicle sales will decline slightly in 2020, closing out the year with sales of 16.8 million units.

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Posted by NADA

National Automobile Dealers Association