Market Overview

TrueCar Finds February Auto Sales Poised to Leap Year over Year

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SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

TrueCar, Inc. (NASDAQ: TRUE) projects total new vehicle sales, including fleet deliveries, will reach 1,340,160 units in February, up 6.6 percent from a year ago to the highest volume for the month since 2001.

That level of growth would push the month's seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) for total light vehicle sales to an estimated 17.5 million units, up from a 16.4 million-unit SAAR a year ago. Stable consumer demand combined with Presidents Day promotions should boost retail sales by 6 percent to 1,064,460 units.

"Demand for new cars and trucks this month looks strong enough to lift new sales in February to the highest level in over 15 years," said Eric Lyman, TrueCar's vice president of industry insights. "It's a sign that consumers remain generally confident in the economy and their finances – and are even willing to brave winter weather to buy a new vehicle."

Ford Motor Co. may report the biggest year-over-year sales gain, as it is currently on pace for a 13.1 percent rise in volume. FCA will likely follow with an 8.6 percent sales increase. Nissan Motor Co. may post the third-biggest gains, with a 7.6 percent increase.

Volume for non-luxury, mass-market brands will likely expand by 6.8 percent versus last year, while sales of luxury models may grow only 3.9 percent. Compact crossover vehicles remain in high-demand this month and will be among the industry's biggest volume segments.

"Presidents Day sales appear to be attracting consumers," said Stacey Doyle, TrueCar's senior industry analyst. "Coming off record industry volume in 2015, we see some brands sweetening the deal during the year's first big promotional push. On average, consumers may receive an additional $300 in incentives compared to February 2015."

Automakers' incentive spending averaged an estimated $2,975 per vehicle in February, up 11 percent from a year ago, though down 0.5 percent from January 2016.

Despite global stock market volatility since the start of 2016, most U.S. economic conditions remain healthy. January's unemployment rate was 4.9 percent, the lowest for that month in nine years, and gasoline prices remain favorable for consumers, falling to a national average of $1.71 per gallon on February 24 from $2.31 a year earlier. However, the Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index® decreased by 5.6 points in February from a month earlier to 92.2.

Other key findings for February:

  • Registration mix is expected to be 79.4 percent retail sales and 20.6 percent fleet versus 79.9 percent retail and 20.1 percent fleet last February.
  • Total used auto sales, including franchise and independent dealerships and private-party transactions, may reach 3,274,677, down 4.5 percent from February 2015.

Forecasts for the 12 largest manufacturers by volume:

Total Unit Sales

Manufacturer

   

February
2016 Forecast

   

% Change vs.
February 2015

   

% Change vs.
February 2015
(Daily Selling Rate)

BMW     28,300     -2.4%     -2.4%
Daimler     27,300     6.0%     6.0%
FCA     178,100     8.6%     8.6%
Ford     203,200     13.1%     13.1%
GM     246,300     6.4%     6.4%
Honda     112,800     7.0%     7.0%
Hyundai     54,000     2.8%     2.8%
Kia     45,500     3.3%     3.3%
Nissan     127,400     7.6%     7.6%
Subaru     41,800     1.1%     1.1%
Toyota     187,100     3.7%     3.7%
Volkswagen Group     39,700     -2.4%     -2.4%

Industry

    1,340,160     6.6%     6.6%
           
 

Total Market Share

Manufacturer     February 2016 Forecast     February 2015     January 2016
BMW     2.1%     2.3%     1.9%
Daimler     2.0%     2.0%     2.3%
FCA     13.3%     13.0%     13.6%
Ford     15.2%     14.3%     15.0%
GM     18.4%     18.4%     17.7%
Honda     8.4%     8.4%     8.8%
Hyundai     4.0%     4.2%     3.9%
Kia     3.4%     3.5%     3.3%
Nissan     9.5%     9.4%     9.2%
Subaru     3.1%     3.3%     3.6%
Toyota     14.0%     14.3%     14.0%
Volkswagen Group     3.0%     3.2%     3.2%
           
 

Retail Unit Sales

Manufacturer

   

February 2016
Forecast

   

% Change vs.
February 2015

   

% Change vs.
February 2015
(Daily Selling Rate)

BMW     27,600     -1.3%     -1.3%
Daimler     25,600     6.7%     6.7%
FCA     127,900     3.2%     3.2%
Ford     127,200     3.5%     3.5%
GM     188,600     11.7%     11.7%
Honda     111,700     6.7%     6.7%
Hyundai     41,600     4.6%     4.6%
Kia     39,900     9.2%     9.2%
Nissan     97,300     4.7%     4.7%
Subaru     40,100     2.6%     2.6%
Toyota     159,300     4.1%     4.1%
Volkswagen Group     34,496     0.0%     0.0%

Industry

   

1,064,460

   

6.0%

   

6.0%

       

 

   
 

Incentive Spending

Manufacturer    

Incentive per
Unit February
2016 Forecast

   

Incentive per Unit
% Change vs.
February 2015

   

Incentive per Unit
% Change vs.
January 2016

   

Total Spending
February 2016
Forecast

BMW     $4,355     15.5%     3.9%     $122,824,883
Daimler     $3,731     -6.1%     3.9%     $101,863,995
FCA     $3,869     14.6%     0.3%     $683,612,382
Ford     $2,996     8.7%     -1.9%     $608,776,696
GM     $4,010     29.2%     -2.1%     $987,620,364
Honda     $1,747     -3.3%     4.5%     $197,071,379
Hyundai     $1,945     -9.9%     2.2%     $105,050,280
Kia     $2,815     -4.0%     -0.3%     $128,061,729
Nissan     $3,271     2.9%     -6.6%     $416,686,138
Subaru     $555     -30.4%     -2.6%     $23,214,102
Toyota     $2,049     8.3%     -2.1%     $383,388,781
Volkswagen Group     $3,216     21.7%     1.9%     $126,713,640

Industry

   

$2,975

   

11.0%

   

-0.5%

   

$3,975,499,979

               

(Note: This forecast is based solely on TrueCar's analysis of industry sales trends and conditions and is not a projection of the company's operations.)

About TrueCar

TrueCar, Inc. (NASDAQ: TRUE) is a digital automotive marketplace that provides comprehensive pricing transparency about what other people paid for their cars and enables consumers to engage with TrueCar Certified Dealers who are committed to providing a superior purchase experience. TrueCar operates its own branded site and its nationwide network of more than 11,000 Certified Dealers also powers car-buying programs for some of the largest U.S. membership and service organizations, including USAA, AARP, American Express, AAA and Sam's Club. Over one third of all new car buyers engage with the TrueCar network during their purchasing process. TrueCar is headquartered in Santa Monica, California, with offices in San Francisco and Austin, Texas. For more information, go to www.truecar.com. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

TrueCar media line: +1-844-469-8442 (US toll-free) | Email: pressinquiries@truecar.com

TrueCar, Inc.
Veronica Cardenas, 424-258-2487
VCardenas@truecar.com
pressinquiries@truecar.com

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