Sales of new vehicles, from nearly all brands, fell a combined 6 percent last month, but one brand defied the trend and set a new sales record.
Jeep managed to move more than 90,000 vehicles in May, a new record and an increase of nearly 14 percent over the same month last year. Even more remarkable is that May 2016 was two days shorter than May 2015.
Ford sales were down 6.6 percent, GMC went down 14.3 percent, and Chevrolet fell 18.6 percent. FCA’s other brands didn’t fare as well as Jeep, with Chrysler falling 18.5 percent and Fiat down 18.9 percent. Ram sales were flat.
All these percentages can be translated into one very interesting fact: Americans have fallen in love with Jeep.
A friend of mine is an avid BMW fan. About three years ago he purchased a new 5 Series and proudly flooded his Facebook page with pictures. His page today is much different, as he and his new wife are proud to have ditched the Bimmer and become an all-Jeep family. They now own a Grand Cherokee and a new Renegade.
My friends’ switch to Jeep is representative of what’s happening throughout the country. An article at The Truth About Cars says,
Rapidly rising Jeep Renegade sales are partly to thank. Yet even with the Renegade excluded, sales of Jeep’s five more established models rose 6 percent, or 15 percent on a daily selling rate basis. Five Jeeps ranked among America’s 20 best-selling SUVs and crossovers in May 2016. As for the Compass? It ranked 21st.
What is it about Jeep that has captured the minds, and the dollars, of American car buyers? One could argue that the answer lies in variety.
Jeep offers the rugged off-roading Wrangler, the practical Compass, the inexpensive and youth-oriented Renegade, the soccer-mom friendly Cherokee, and the luxurious Grand Cherokee. Shoppers in nearly every SUV and crossover class have a Jeep to put on the list, and it appears that many of them end up signing on the dotted line.
Is Jeep your new favorite brand?