November Auto Sales/Outlook Show Recovery in Gear

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The November auto salesrate looks like it will top 12 million for a second straight month.

That along, with encouraging comments and news from GM and Ford make it clear the auto industry recovery is kicking into gear.

We are unlikely to see a huge snap back in sales, instead a gradually improving rate fueled by an improving economy and pent up demand.

  • Last month GM sales for its four core brands improved 21%. (overall sales were up 11%)
  • Ford saw an improvement of 24%.

Both companies saw stronger demand for full size pick-ups, a long time indicator of economic activity since many small business operators and contractors use pick-ups. Even more encouraging, Ford is increasing its first quarter production plan by 11% year over year. It's planning to build another 61,000 vehicles to raise Q1 production in North America to 635,000. As Ford steadily ratchets up production it is further proof the automaker is optimistic the economic recovery will continue to improve next year.

Finally, look at Ford sales for 2010. They're up 21%. That's more than double the industry average. Ford has had momentum for some time, and as it rolls out new models it shows no signs of letting that momentum slip away.

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