There have been a lot of articles lately about the shift in the US towards small, fuel efficient vehicles. For the first time ever, 4cyl vehicles are outselling 6cyl vehicles.
What these articles have missed is just how rapidly the sales of the largest SUVs and pickups are falling when you look at the data model by model.
GM April 08 v. April 07 shows that sales of Escalade EXT truck are down 45.7% and the regular Escalade SUV down 33.6%. The largest Chevrolet pick-ups and SUVs (Suburban, Tahoe, Silverado, Avalanche) are down 30.7%, 34.9%, 30.8%, and 34.9%.
The giant GMC Envoy, Yukon, and Yukon XL are down 68.6%, 38.4%, and 44.9%. Hummer sales are down 49.8%.
Ford’s largest SUVs models, the Explorer, Expedition, Moutaineer, and Navigator are down 38.5%, 35%, 55.7, and 7.1%. Ford’s all-SUV division Land Rover division sales are down 39.3%. Finally Ford’s full size F-Series pickup sales are down 21%.
Over at Chrysler, Dodge Durango is down 45%, Nitro is down 41%, Jeep Commander is down 49%, and Grand Cherokee is down 31%.
At Toyota, Lexus SUV sales are down 8.6% despite the introduction of the new LX 570, while Toyota’s light truck division saw sales fall 15.7%. Here are some individual vehicles:
FJ Cruiser SUV -46%
4Runner SUV -41.6%
Tundra pick-up -13.2%
Also, Toyota’s most expensive and gas-guzzling car, the Lexus LS, saw sales fall 42.2%. Meanwhile the company’s two most efficient cars, the Yaris and Prius, are up 45.9% and 53.8%. Prius is now Toyota’s 3rd best selling vehicle, and will soon outsell Toyota’s entire Lexus car and SUV lineup put together.
Those impressive Prius sales are even more remarkable when you consider that the current 2nd generation Prius model is now almost 5 years old. Usually sales fall substantially the last year before a model is refreshed. The 3rd generation 2009 Prius, due out in early 2009, will be bigger and faster than the current model, and is rumored to get as much as 94 MPG.