If you’re in the market for a new truck you just might find yourself waiting in line next time you go to the dealership. Automakers are seeing record sales heading into the summer, with pickups both large and small enjoying the success.
Sales for pickups rose 8.0 percent in May to $220,010 according to autonews.com. What makes these numbers more impressive is the fact that they came despite a down month for the consistently top selling Ford F-Series. Remove Ford from the equation and pickup sales were actually up 17 percent in May.
It’s not all bad news for Ford though, as the decrease in sales had more to do with the ability to keep up supply while the factories underwent changes to produce the new aluminum body panels on the F Series. Once Ford gets back up to speed, expect to see a spike in sales that should make up for their down month.
It’s safe to say the rest of the market didn’t wait for Ford to catch up on production though. The Chevy Silverado saw its second strongest month since December 2007 and the Toyota Tundra had its highest since May 2008. After several years on hiatus, the renewed Chevy Colorado had its best month since 2006 and the GMC Canyon had its best since July 2005.
Among several factors impacting truck sales, the combination of lower gas prices and a general increase in fuel efficiency for trucks is likely leading the charge. Another factor noted by autonews.com is the rebirth of the compact truck segment.
In the last decade, a number of compact pickups saw production halted including the Ford Ranger, Dodge Dakota, and Chevy Colorado. These trucks are making a comeback though, as Chevy sold 8,881 Colorado’s last month.
The Toyota Tacoma is helping the compact truck market too, boasting a 26 percent increase in sales. Total sales for compact pickups reached 34,741, an increase of 69 percent for the month.
The resurgence of compact pickups isn’t hurting sales for the full-size lines either, as analysts point out that the more affordable compacts are attracting a different kind of consumer. Dealerships are finding that more and more personal use buyers are trading in their sedans for compact pickups; further evidence that they aren’t scared away by gas prices and poor fuel efficiency of the past.
We’ll be interested to see how long these trends continue, but there doesn’t appear to be any sign of a slowdown coming for the summer season.