Most automakers saw their sales rise in August 2019.
While we won’t see Ford, GM, FCA or Tesla sales figures for another month, most of the industry fared well in August 2019. Most Asian automakers, such as Toyota, Honda, Hyundai and Nissan, saw their sales rise by double-digit percentages from this point last year. Forecasters contended sales would rise in August, thanks in large part to the Labor Day holiday boosting end-of-month figures. Honda set an all-time monthly record with 158,804 vehicles. Toyota also fared well in August 2019, with 218,403 vehicles sold (up 12.3 percent from this point last year).
Based on the information we currently have, these are the both the top five winners and losers of the month. Automotive News‘ data center compiled the sales information from manufacturer reports which started going out today. Taking a look at month-over-month changes, we get some idea of where each brand stands against where it was a year ago. The “winners” and “losers” are based on total brand sales.
These light vehicle sales are based on manufacturer-reported figures, rather than estimates. While companies like McLaren and Lamborghini grew leaps and bounds based on estimates, we’re figuring the top and bottom five brands based on final numbers.
Top 5 Best Sellers (monthly sales):
5) Hyundai: +12.0% (63,737 sales)
- Best-selling model: Elantra (14,305 sales)
- Worst-selling model: Veloster (1,125 sales)
Hyundai’s sales largely improved on its crossovers, from the subcompact Kona to the larger Tucson and Palisade. Deliveries increased 12 percent for the second consecutive month, and the brand experienced its thirteenth month of year-over-year sales gains. By sheer volume, the Elantra is still the brand’s best selling car, although the Tucson came in a close second.
Sedans are still slow sellers across the board, and Hyundai is no exception to that rule. The Accent’s sales fell by nearly half, while the Sonata also fell in August. Although, many are likely holding out for the redesigned 2020 Sonata, leading to a slight shortfall in sales for the model.
4) Subaru: +9.30% (70,039 sales)
- Best-selling model: Outback (17,110 sales)
- Worst-selling model: BRZ (158 sales)
August was a blockbuster month for Subaru, as the brand had its best-ever sales month. Mainly due to the ever-popular Outback and Forester, as well as the new three-row Ascent, the brand crested 70,000 sales in August alone. Subaru claims 93 consecutive months of month-over-month growth.
The worst-selling model, on the other hand, was the BRZ. Perhaps not surprising that the least Subaru-like Subaru was the slowest seller, as its not particularly practical and its not all-wheel drive. Even among enthusiasts support seems to be dwindling, as month-over-month sales fell 58.6 percent. Sales of the WRX and STI were also down nearly 26 percent.
3) Nissan: +16.20% (118,045 sales)
- Best-selling model: Rogue (41,629 sales)
- Worst-selling model: GT-R (41 sales)
Nissan has certainly been in some trouble in recent months, but it did manage to pick up its sales last month. August 2019 sales were up a significant 16.2 percent, thanks to strong sales from the new Altima, Kicks, Rogue, and even the aging Frontier pickup. As ever, the best-selling model was the Rogue, with 41,629 units sold.
Naturally, the worst-selling model was the GT-R, which took a 54.4 percent tumble from this point last year. Sales of the 370Z were also down, as well as the Pathfinder (down 13.6 percent), Versa (down 10.4 percent) and Sentra (down 14.4 percent).
2) Honda: +19.60% (158,804 sales)
- Best-selling model: CR-V (44,235 sales)
- Worst-selling model: Clarity (914 sales)
Honda sold nearly 26,000 more vehicles across the brand than this point last year. Sales of the Accord, Civic and Fit were all up significantly. In fact, the Fit’s sales rose by 52.6 percent, while the Civic and Accord rose by 21.3 percent and 10.3 percent, respectively.
The out and out best-selling model was the CR-V, as usual, with 44,235 units sold. That puts it in second place in its class behind the Toyota RAV4, and its sales picked up a whopping 23.2 percent last month. Honda’s worst-selling model was the slow-selling Clarity, with just 914 units sold.
1) Toyota: +12.30% (218,403 sales)
- Best-selling model: RAV4 (49,481 sales)
- Worst-selling model: Land Cruiser (283 sales)
Toyota blew every other manufacturer that reported sales this month out of the water. That’s largely down to the RAV4, which is steadily gaining sales in its newest generation. Last month, Toyota moved 49,481 RAV4s, 17.2 percent more than this point last year. Other crossovers like the C-HR also did well (up 23.5 percent), as did the Highlander (up 17.4 percent). Even the Sequoia did well, with its sales up 37.8 percent from this point last year.
Toyota’s worst-selling model was its massively expensive Land Cruiser, with just 283 units sold. That’s still up 3.7 percent from August 2018, but still small by Toyota standards. The 4Runner also increased slightly (3.1 percent), but its sales have slowed a little bit from previous months.
Top 5 Slow Sellers (monthly sales):
5) Mitsubishi: -3.3% (8,139 sales)
- Best-selling model: Mirage (2,824 sales)
- Worst-selling model: Outlander PHEV (277 sales)
The Mitsubishi Mirage actually fared well in August, with its sales picking up over this point last year. The Outlander Sport, on the other hand, fell significantly, as a new model is due out soon. The Outlander also fell, but the Eclipse Cross rose to 973 sales.
Despite the slight slowdown, Mitsubishi’s 2019 to date is still the best calendar year the brand’s had in over a decade.
4) Land Rover: -8.5% (6,572 sales)
Jaguar and Land Rover are both struggling in sales. That includes August 2019, according to the Automotive News Data Center information. Jaguar Land Rover does not report its sales in step with the other automakers, so we may have to wait a week or two to get a breakdown by model. However, we can see that Land Rover sales were down 8.5 percent from this point last year.
3) Porsche: +13.5% (4,636 sales)
- Best-selling model: Macan (2,038 sales)
- Worst-selling model: 718 (339 sales)
By sheer volume, Porsche has never really been a volume seller. Now, that may change with the all-new Taycan, at least briefly. The company contends it has tens of thousands of pre-orders, and it will certainly jump up in sales if all those people actually pay the $150,000-and-up price tag. Porsche’s best conventional car has been the Macan, with just over 2,000 units sold in August.
Its entry-level sports car, the 718, didn’t fare quite so well. Against the likes of the 911 as a sports car and the Macan as an entry-level Porsche crossover, perhaps that’s not surprising. The 718 is a great sports car, but it’s a niche model aimed at what is becoming a niche market. It’s losing its competition from the Audi TT and Mercedes-Benz SLC, which speaks to this shrinking segment’s dwindling demand.
2) Mini: +2.9% (3,911 sales)
- Best-selling model: Countryman (1,944 sales)
- Worst-selling model: Clubman (338 sales)
Mini did experience a slight bump in sales last month. Its August 2019 sales were up 2.9 percent, thanks in no small part to the Countryman crossover. On the other hand, the quirky Clubman was the slowest seller, moving just 338 units nationwide.
1) Jaguar: -13.8% (2,128 sales)
As with Land Rover, Jaguar’s sales have slowed significantly over this point last year. Apart from the I-Pace, Jaguar isn’t offering any new product beyond the refreshed XE or top-end models like the F-Pace SVR. What’s more, the aging XJ is going away, the F-Pace is due for some updates, and the E-Pace isn’t exactly the hot ticket Jaguar may have been hoping it would be.
Jaguar has not formally announced its sales yet, and may do so by about mid-September. When that happens, we’ll come back and update this post with some more specific numbers.
Bonus) Genesis: +186.6% (1,757 sales)
Genesis has been a bit of an odd duck for sales these past several months. The brand is working on rolling out its own dealer network, separate from Hyundai. As a result, you may have had a hard time actually getting your hands on a new Genesis. Now, though, sales have been picking up, thanks in part to the brand’s expanded lineup. That includes the new and excellent G70 sedan, as well as the larger G80 and G90.
Soon enough, we’ll have new crossovers from Hyundai’s luxury brand as well.
Stay tuned to TFLcar.com and TFLtruck.com for more sales posts, as well as more news, views and real-world reviews!