SANTA MONICA, Calif., March 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- TrueCar.com, the authority on new car pricing, trends and forecasting, today released its March 2011 sales and incentives forecast. The forecast shows the following:
- For March 2011, new light vehicle sales in the U.S. (including fleet) is expected to be 1,190,931 units, up 12 percent from March 2010 and up 20 percent from February 2011 (on an unadjusted basis)
- The March 2011 forecast translates into a Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Rate (SAAR) of 12.5 million new car sales, down significantly from 13.4 million in February 2011 and up from 11.7 million in March 2010
- Retail sales are up 20 percent compared to February 2011 and up 11 percent from March 2010
- Fleet and rental sales are expected to make up 20 percent of total industry sales in March 2011
- The industry average incentive spending per unit will be approximately $2,432 in March 2011, which represents a drop of six percent from February 2011 and down 13 percent from March 2010
- Used car sales* is estimated to be 2,459,891, up 37 percent from February 2011 and up three percent from March 2010. The ratio of new to used is estimated to be 1:2 for March 2011
"There has been so much uncertainty in the market this month, with the disaster in Japan and the unrest in the Middle East, causing either higher gas prices or potential supply chain problems that have resulted in inventory shortages," said Jesse Toprak, VP of Industry Trends and Insight for TrueCar.com. "When there is unrest, consumers tend to take a wait and see approach to purchasing big ticket items."
Forecasts for the top seven manufacturers for March 2011:
Unit Sales Forecast
March 2011 Forecast
% Change vs. Feb. 2011
% Change vs. March 2010
Market Share Forecast
March 2011 Forecast
Incentive Spending Forecast
March 2011 Incentives
Change vs. Feb. 2011
Change vs. March 2010
Toprak continues, "Incentive spending in March is the lowest since January 2007, which had a negative impact on sales. GM and Toyota led the way, with double digit declines in spending this month."
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 is the authority in new car prices. We show car buyers and car dealers how much people actually paid for a particular car in a specific local area. TrueCar pricing can help both new car buyers and new car dealers determine what is considered a good or great price on a new car. Consumers no longer need to walk into a dealership partially informed and fully suspicious – using TrueCar they walk in knowing the price of a fair deal. Dealers benefit by TrueCar's real-time, unbiased information about marketplace pricing, helping them price cars for increased sales, and ultimately gaining market share over other dealers. Our innovative new car pricing service is offered free of charge on our website at www.truecar.com, on our mobile site at mobile.truecar.com, and via syndication of our tools and pricing data to leading automotive research sites throughout the web.
About TrueCar Data
TrueCar obtains data directly from numerous sources including automotive dealers, technology companies, data aggregators, and analytics companies within the automotive space. We also acquire vehicle configuration data, customer and dealer incentives data, financing and loan data, vehicle registration and insurance data, and much, much more. TrueCar is insatiable about data with our goal to find 100% of all purchase transactions, even if that means finding the same transaction multiple times from multiple sources within the car-buying ecosystem. Our data is among the most timely and comprehensive in the industry, as we are able to process most car sales within a week of the actual sales date, and have a substantial fraction on the site within 48 hours of the actual sale. TrueCar believes the greater our informational accuracy, the greater benefit we provide to both dealers and consumers.
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