2011 Auto Sales: Gains Across the Board, Save Honda and Toyota

Kia sales in the U.S. rose by more than 36 percent in 2011.

Kia sales in the U.S. rose by more than 36 percent in 2011. (Kia.com)

Lost in the excitement of market share and sales gains by domestic automakers is the fact that not all are enjoying the results posted in 2011. Toyota and Honda have both seen their fortunes decline through the year, thanks in part to supply problems from the tsunami that rocked Japan earlier in the year.

All three domestic brands increased their market share in 2011, something that hadn’t happened since 1988. Back then, the Big 3 accounted for a whopping 73.1 percent of every car sold in the United States. In 2011, the Big 3 took in 47.2 percent of the market, a rise from 45.1 percent in 2010.

Toyota and Honda, however, sold fewer cars in 2011 than they did in 2010. There’s huge disagreement as to the ability of these Japanese stalwarts to gain back their losses in 2012, however. Toyota did post a modest gain in sales of 0.4 percent in December, but still finished the year down.

Jeremy Anwyl, CEO of Edmunds.com, thinks the declines are due to more than just inventory issues, and that consumer perceptions of higher prices drove buyers away from Toyota and Honda.

“There has been kind of a vacuum in the market,” Anwyl said. “I think moving into next year, that vacuum isn’t going to be there, and it actually could go in reverse.”

Overall Increase/Decrease in Sales by Major Automakers in 2011

  • Audi - 15.7 percent rise
  • BMW - 16 percent rise
  • Chrysler (includes Dodge and Jeep) – 26 percent rise
  • Ford (includes Lincoln) – 11 percent rise
  • General Motors (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC) – 13 percent rise
  • Honda – 7.7 percent decline
  • Hyundai – 20 percent rise
  • Kia – 36.3 percent rise
  • Mercedes – 16 percent rise
  • Nissan (includes Infiniti) – 15 percent rise
  • Toyota (includes Scion and Lexus) - 6.7 percent decline
  • Volkswagen – 23.6 percent rise

About Cecil Helton

Cecil Helton Cecil Helton is a U.S.-based writer and editor with passions for cars, motorcycles, boats, technology and social media. Much of his professional life since 1996 has been web-centric, and he’s written and developed content on a variety of subjects. His work in the houseboat industry received wide acclaim, such as winning the 1999 Cisco Systems Growing with Technology award and being named one of five finalists in the manufacturing sector of the 2000 Computerworld-Smithsonian Awards. As an Air Force brat, he spent much of his childhood in a two-year cycle of moving to a new place, making new friends, establishing a life, and then moving again. Destinations included: Kentucky, Illinois, Texas, the Greek isle of Crete, California and Ohio. Today you’ll find Cecil coping with his 15 year old son’s decision to pursue a motorcycle license at the same time he gets his driver’s license, being active across the web on multiple social media sites, and of course, writing articles and creating content on automotive and car insurance related topics right here at CarInsurance.org.


Facebook Comments