US car sales enjoy a jump start after supply issues

City A.M. Reporter
SOME of the biggest carmakers in the United States have reported sales jumps of at least 20 per cent during September, in a sign that consumers have returned as vehicle inventories have risen after being crimped by the March earthquake in Japan.

General Motors, the world’s biggest carmaker, said yesterday its sales were driven by a 34 per cent gain in full-sized pickup trucks and SUVs. GM sold 207,145 vehicles in the US.

Chrysler, the third biggest car producer in the States, had its best performance for September since 2007, selling 127,334 vehicles.

Volkswagen also continued to outpace the industry in September, showing a sales gain of 36 per cent to remain the tenth largest US seller.

GM, Chrysler and Volkswagen were the first carmakers to report monthly US sales for September, which is expected to be the strongest month since April, industry analysts have said.

Peter Nesvold of Jefferies & Co said September will be the first month since April not to feel a hangover from the Japanese earthquake.

But the outlook was gloomier in Canada, where biggest seller Ford said sales fell three per cent to 25,656, with a 14 per cent rise in car sales overshadowed by truck sales falling seven per cent on last September.