|Year-to-year change in January sales of full-size SUVs. Click to enlarge.|
Sales of full-size SUVs in the US continued their decline, although not as precipitously as in some months prior. Total sales dropped 8.6% from 96,107 in January 2005 to 87,864 in January 2006.
The major exception to this was GM, which saw sales of its full-size SUVs climb 5.5% to 51,758 from 49,048 the year before. The GM swing was based primarily upon strong sales of the new Tahoe, which jumped 53% from 8,558 to 13,093 units year-to-year.
|Tahoe led the surge in GM SUV sales.|
GM, which overall saw its light-duty vehicle sales climb 6%, increased its share of new full-size SUV sales from 51% to 59%. The segment, however, remained at 17.7% internally of all units sold in both 2004 and 2005.
Ford suffered the largest absolute decline in the segment in January, with a 26% drop from 28,089 to 20,789. The Explorer, Ford’s segment leader, dropped 22.5% from 15,478 to 12,000 year on year.
Toyota beat out Ford for the dubious honor of the largest percentage drop in full-size SUV sales by .1 of a percentage point. It’s full-size SUV sales dropped 26.1% from 4,857 to 3,588.
Chrysler, which just introduced the full-sized SUV Aspen at the Detroit auto show saw sales of its Dodge Durango drop 14.7% from 8,993 to 7,668.
In 2005, GM said that even if the full-size SUV market were declining, it would increase its market share with its new products. If January 2006 is a bellwether, that is indeed happening.