Major carmakers extend US sales gains in January

February 02, 2013 - 3:02:32 am

CHICAGO: US vehicle sales looked set to extend a lengthy streak of gains in January as General Motors, Ford, Chrysler and Toyota posted double digit growth yesterday.

Toyota led the pack as its sales jumped 27 percent to 157,725 vehicles. “The sales pace we saw in the fourth quarter of last year rolled into January, exceeding our expectations for the industry,” said Bill Fay, General Manager of Toyota Motor Sales USA.

“Toyota started the year off strong,” added Fay, who estimated the Japanese carmaker’s US sales would be more than double the industry average.

Ford followed with a 22 percent gain to 166,501 vehicles, its best January since 2006. “Ford is off to a strong start this year, with Fusion and Escape delivering January sales records and F-Series seeing a particularly strong reception this early in the year,” sales chief Ken Czubay said.

Chrysler posted its 34th consecutive month of gains as US sales rose 16 percent to 101,149 vehicles, the company’s best January since 2008. “It’s been a good week for the Chrysler Group,” sales chief Reid Bigland said.

Meanwhile, GM’s US sales rose 16 percent from a year ago to 194,699 vehicles. “The year is off to a very good start for General Motors,” sales chief Kurt McNeil said. “There’s a sense of optimism among our dealers that only comes when you pair a growing economy with great new products.”