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Analysts foresee lower September sales for Big 3

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By Greg Migliore
Automotive News / September 29, 2005

http://www.autonews.com/news.cms?newsId=13448

DETROIT -- Industry experts are forecasting a brutal hangover for the Big 3 in the final month of their employee discount incentive programs as inventories dry up and the popularity of SUVs wanes in the wake of the hurricane-inflated gasoline prices.

But propped up by gains at import automakers, September U.S. sales are expected to increase 11 percent over the year-ago month, to 1.27 million vehicles. The seasonally adjusted annualized sales rate is pegged to range between 16 million and 16.8 million units.

General Motors, which posted the most spectacular summer gains, is bearing the brunt of the slowdown. Analysts predict its September sales will be off between 16.7 percent and 30 percent, compared with September 2004.

Automakers report their September sales on Monday, Oct. 3.

Merrill Lynch analyst John Casesa says in his monthly sales outlook that GM's sales have "completely reversed course," and notes that its inventory will be about 17 percent below average for this time of year.

Ford Motor Co. also will likely take a sales hit, with forecasts for a drop ranging from a 12.6 percent to 20 percent.

The Chrysler group's sales are expected to range between flat to down 7 percent.

Burnham Securities analyst David Healy says in his monthly preview that SUVs are in a "near state of collapse" and predicts their sales will be off 25 percent to 40 percent year-over-year.

While the domestics appear to have pulled ahead sales with their employee-discount incentive programs, import automakers are in better shape.

Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. sales are predicted to be up between 7 percent and 15 percent for September.

American Honda could see a gain of 12 percent to 13 percent for the month. Casesa says the automaker has been helped by a solid performance from the Civic, as 2005 models moved during the year-end clearance and the 2006 version arrived in showrooms on Sept. 9.

Nissan North America Inc. sales are expected to jump by 6 percent to 16 percent.
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Not so sure if anybody is going to have any gains..all the dealerships are quiet around here, Including the imports... Judging but the record number of past due accounts this month (credit cards), New cars are of little concern.... :(
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You can't sell cars if there are few on dealer lots. The local Ford dealer has a half dozen '06 Explorers, eight '06 Rangers, two new Mustangs (neither a GT) and not a single Fusion. The local Chevy dealer has just a few new Impys and not a single new Monte Carlo. The employee pricing deal has allowed dealers to clear out '05 inventories, with few '06 models yet on lots. Yup, it will be a brutal September - but not necessarily for reasons that presage future troubles.
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Any insider has a clue of september sales? It will be a tough month.
Foreign are gonna take another piece of the cake.

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well for my dealership last year (2004) was 451 cars/trucks (chevrolet) but i do believe that includes used... i dont think we hit 300 this month, but I dont know...

There is a terrible inventory problem, we have a horrible stock right now... people cant find the vehicles they are looking for... HHR's... good luck even finding the color you want... much less options... Silverados... for a dealership that does a high percentage of buisness with silverados and tahoes, our silverado selection is down to about 12 vehicles... instead of 200-300... tahoes, we have probably 300 tahoes, maybe 5 suburbans, 10 equinox, 10 trailblazers... no inventory... we have a roof and 3 parking lots that are empty... we are selling as quick as GM can give em to us... So whatever losses come... thats because of the summer...

Impalas are coming into a good supply...
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Burnham Securities analyst David Healy says in his monthly preview that SUVs are in a "near state of collapse" and predicts their sales will be off 25 percent to 40 percent year-over-year.


Ladies and Gentlemen;

David Healy: A greenie with wishful thinking.
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