Winter’s wrath fell hard on car dealer David Kelleher last month, forcing him to close his Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep store near Philadelphia for five days due to heavy snow and ice. There was an upside, though: Booming sales of all-wheel drive models.
The Ford brand is closing in on Toyota as the favorite of retail auto buyers, a sign of rising popularity of the Fusion mid-size car and Escape sport-utility vehicle, and of growing dismay with the Japanese manufacturer.
The polar vortex that blasted through much of the United States last month made selling cars as difficult as moving the snow mounds that rose up around David Martin’s dealership near New Hampshire’s Mt. Washington.
A sluggish December failed to derail the U.S. auto industry’s best year since 2007, as sales of Ford Motor Co.’s Fusion surged to a record, Chrysler Group LLC posted its 45th straight month of sales increases and General Motors Co.’s Cadillac cars soared 48 percent.
Ford Motor Co., seeking to challenge Toyota Motor Corp.’s dominance in gasoline-electric vehicles, said it will pass its full-year record for U.S. hybrid sales this month on demand for its Fusion and C-Max models.
Almost 50 years after Ford Motor Co.’s first Mustang introduced Americans to the fast and affordable pony car, the automaker is counting on a new design it unveils on four continents tomorrow to spur global sales.
Charlee Smith said he sees Toyota Motor Corp.’s Camry and Honda Motor Co.’s Accord all over California and their styling makes him think “appliance.” To stand out, he picked a gas-electric hybrid with a grille that evokes British sports cars, buying a Ford Motor Co. Fusion.