New car sales gain almost 8%
New auto sales in the Miami area rose in the first quarter, signaling an improvement in the economy, according to market analysts.
A total of 31,735 new cars and trucks were sold in Greater Miami in the first quarter, up 7.76% from the same time last year, according to Cross-Sell reports from Dominion Enterprises, a Virginia-based firm that tracks auto dealership sales nationwide.
The increase in sales in Miami stacks up well against other major markets, said Cross-Sell General Manager Shane Marcum.
For example, first-quarter sales in Dallas rose less than 1%; Houston saw a nearly 5% increase; San Francisco had an 8% increase; Orlando saw a 10% increase; and Los Angeles had a 13% increase, Mr. Marcum said.
“When you see dramatic increases in new vehicle sales, it typically indicates an upswing in the economy,” he explained.
“Conversely,” he added, “when you see a downturn in new vehicle sales and an increase in used vehicle sales, it typically indicates a downswing in the economy. This is typically a regional occurrence. You may have an upswing in some states, while other states are in a downswing.”
Greater Miami recorded more than 19,200 new car sales in the first quarter and more than 12,500 new truck sales, Cross-Sell reports show.
The most popular category of car was mid-sized (5,388 sold for an average price of $22,418). That was led by the Honda Accord (1,045 sold), the Toyota Camry (967 sold) and the Hyundai Sonata (786 sold).
Next was compact, with 5,144 sold for an average price of $16,983. That was led by the Toyota Corolla (1,304 sold), the Honda Civic (914) and the Volkswagen Jetta (652).
Then came near-luxury, with 3,279 sold for an average price of $34,209. That was led by the BMW 3 Series (714 sold), the Lexus ES 350 (365) and the Infiniti G37 (301 sold).
Other categories were luxury (2,572 sold for an average price of $64,630), led by the Mercedes 250 Series; compact (1,335 sold for an average price of $20,123), led by the Mini Mini; sporty (610 sold for an average price of $39,805), led by the Chevrolet Camaro; specialty (650 sold for average price of $127,610), led by the Porsche 911; and large (234 sold for an average price of $32,706), led by the Nissan Maxima.
Among trucks, the most popular category was compact sport utility, with 5,810 sold for an average price of $43,130. That was led by the Lexus RX-350, the Nissan Rogue and the Mercedes G Series.
Then came small sport utility (3,005 sold for an average price of $29,185). That was led by the Honda CR-V, the Toyota Rav 4 and the Jeep Wrangler.
Other truck categories were full-sized pickups (1,070 sold for an average price of $40,230), led by the Ford F-Series; full-sized sport utility (1,364 sold for an average price of $57,744), led by the Land Rover Range Rover; minivan (745 sold for an average price of $32,848), led by the Honda Odyssey; compact pickup (223 sold for an average price of $19,999), led by the Toyota Tacoma; and medium and heavy truck (109 sold for an average price of $96,117), led by the Mercedes Sprinter.
“Makes like Honda, Toyota, etc., typically have the best-selling vehicles due to capturing the market share early with strong warranty offerings,” Mr. Marcum said. “This has solidified their reputation as long-lasting and reliable vehicles.”
Meanwhile, he said, nationwide sales of American makes have made progress.
“That’s based on Ford Motor Co. stating that sales have risen 14%,” he added. “General Motors Co. indicated sales have risen 3% this May compared to last May.”