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Auto Sales Deliver Some Unexpected Surprises in June

And GM defies Wall Street expectations by reporting a modest rise in sales.
/ Source: The Detroit Bureau

General Motors eked out a modest 1 percent sales increase in June, defying expectations that the ongoing recall crisis would scare buyers away from showrooms. The rest of the automotive pack benefited from rising gasoline prices as consumers sought more gas-sipping models. Chrysler, Toyota, Nissan and Hyundai reported sales increases in June, while Porsche reported its best-ever numbers for the month. Ford reported a disappointing 6 percent sales drop for June, but said sales of its midsized Fusion sedan increased 14 percent. Chrysler reported a 9 percent increase, marking the group’s best June sales since 2007 -- while extending Chrysler's streak of year-over-year sales gains to 51-consecutive months. On a seasonally adjusted basis, June saw the industry operating at a 16.6 million annual rate, well ahead of the industry’s overall performance for the first half of the year. Were that figure to hold, the industry would sell nearly 1 million more vehicles than it did in 2013. Meanwhile, consumers wound up paying more than ever for their new vehicles in June, according to industry analysts.

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-- By The Detroit Bureau's Joseph Szczesny