The automotive industry hit an all-time low this week, according to auto sales analyses. Auto companies reported a dramatic decrease in sales, the lowest level in 16 years. Annual auto sales were down to 16.1 million last year, as compared to 17 million in 2005. The automotive industry hasn't seen a double-digit decline like this in quite a while and sales are expected to decrease another 10% this year.
About 12% of vehicles on the road today are only getting 25 miles per gallon. Ford stated that it will increase the production of some of their more fuel-efficient models like the Ford Focus, Ford Escape, and Mercury Mariner. Ford was the first to report on Tuesday and stated that their share hit a 52-week low, and that the sales had fallen 28%, a huge leap from beginning of the year sales.
Even though General Motors beat Toyota in sales in June they still saw an 18.2% decline. Their shares dropped 6% and went to their lowest level on Monday. This was a drop that General Motors hasn’t seen since 1954.
Toyota passed General Motors in first-quarter global sales, which saw a growth in Europe and China. Toyota has taken over as the top auto manufacturer in the world, as their vehicles have always been designed for fuel efficiency. Toyota’s US sales fell 21.4 % for the year, 9.4% of that decreased experienced in June alone. Their truck sales went down to a low 38.8%.
Even though automotive manufacturers around the world are trying to cope with high fuel costs, as seen at the auto show, people still want even more fuel-efficient and practical automobiles. Consumers are weary of high auto prices, as well as high gas prices, and have been spending decidedly less in the automotive industry.