The Cash for Clunker Hangeover: Largest automakers report sales decline for Sept.

One would be hard-pressed to argue that the cash-for-clunkers was wildly successful at bringing consumers into showrooms this summer. The hype, however, has ended and September has seen sales rates below that of June, before the program began.

September’s sales rate came in at 9.51 million units, compared to 9.55 million in June. Ken Czubay, VP of US marketing for FoMoCo had this to say to Automotive News about the years numbers, “I’ve been in the auto business for 39 years, and I’ve never seen a roller coaster year like this,”

Ford fared fairly well though, as GM and Chrysler dropped 40% as predicted by analysts, Honda fell 20% and Toyota’s sales were down 13%, all compared to Ford’s drop of 5% following two consecutive months of year-over-year gains. Subaru and Hyundai-Kia, up 10% and 3% respectively, were able to sustain growth.

Industry wide performance was down almost 1/4 when compared with the previous September, and brought the decline for the previous 9 month period to 27%. August was the first month this year, and thus far the only one, to break 1 million units sold.

– By: Stephen Calogera