Tuesday saw Ford Motor Co report a 10.1% increase in first-quarter U.S. car sales, driven by pent-up demand for trucks, SUVs, and electrified vehicles in the midst of reducing supply chain problems.
The auto industry delivered more automobiles to dealers and consumers on schedule in the quarter, and the Detroit carmaker has joined other international competitors in claiming an increase in sales. At a time when concerns about a decline in demand due to increasing interest rates and an impending recession remain, automakers are reporting encouraging results.
The U.S. new-vehicle industry is exhibiting signs of strength and is simultaneously being changed by rising costs and fewer subprime customers, according to Charlie Chesbrough, the senior economist at Cox Automotive.
Ford said last month that it was exploring methods to raise the output of gasoline-powered and hybrid F-150 pickups at a Michigan facility as part of a larger strategy to enhance the production of various models due to the high vehicle demand.
According to figures released on Tuesday, sales of crossover SUVs and trucks, a crucial sector, accounted for almost 95% of Ford’s first-quarter sales, while total sales increased to 475,906 cars from 432,132 vehicles a year earlier.
While Ford’s F-150 Lightning pickup truck sales increased to 4,291 units from 254 a year earlier, EV sales increased by 41% in the period. When market leader Tesla Inc. lowered pricing and started a price war in March, the American automaker again raised prices for several of its F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck models.
According to figures issued by Wards Intelligence on Monday, new car sales in the United States totaled 1.37 million units in March, for an annual sales rate of 14.82 million.