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UPDATE 1-October sales miss expectations at Chrysler, Ford

Bernie Woodall and Ben Klayman
Friday, 1 Nov 2013 | 9:47 AM ET

DETROIT, Nov 1 (Reuters) - U.S. October auto sales for Ford Motor Co and Chrysler Group LLC rose by double-digits from a year earlier, but missed analysts' expectations.

Automakers reporting monthly sales on Friday were expected by analysts to show a gain of 12 percent to about 1.22 million vehicles, or 15.4 million vehicles on a seasonally adjusted annualized basis.

Ford said October sales increased 14 percent to 191,985, from 168,456 a year earlier. Ford and Lincoln brand sales both were up during the month. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, on average, expected 194,301.

Chrysler reported October sales of 140,083, up 11 percent from 126,185 a year ago. Analysts expected 143,536.

Chrysler, No. 4 in the U.S. auto market by sales, sold 579 Jeep Cherokee midsize SUVs in October; it began shipments of the new Cherokee only last week after a two-month delay.

Sales of full-size pickups continued to show strength in October, although their torrid year-long pace slowed a bit. Ford's F-series was up 13 percent for the month and 20 percent for the year to date, while Chrysler's Ram was up 18 percent for the month and 23 percent for the year to date.

Hyundai Motor Co said its U.S. sales climbed 7 percent to 53,555 vehicles.

The 16-day shutdown of most of the federal government in early October did not keep auto sales down, several analysts said.

"The expectations were that car buyers would wait on the sidelines," said Alec Gutierrez of Kelley Blue Book, but pent-up demand and credit availability helped propel sales.

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