Automakers pushing 2013 models onto lots earlier

By Jerry Hirsch Los Angeles Times

LOS ANGELES — Every year automakers launch a barrage of advertisements pitching how they need to clear out the current year’s vehicles to make way for new model year inventory.

At the same time, the companies keep moving up the date on new model year car introductions.

This once all took place in late August and September, but now it’s starting in June and hitting full stride in July.

Auto price information company analyzed June vehicle sales by brand and model year and figured out which manufacturers have moved the most aggressively into the new model year and which ones were stuck still selling significant numbers of car leftover from 2011.

Asian and luxury brands — with the exception of Mercedes-Benz — top the list of those charging into 2013. The American brands still play the game more traditionally.

Hyundai is selling the most 2013 models. They accounted for 42 percent of its sales last month.

Lexus and Acura are next, each with a bit more than 30 percent.

Mazda and BMW are next, each at 25 percent.

Lincoln is the American brand with the most 2013 sales —18 percent, while its sister brand Ford is at 15 percent. Chevrolet is way down the list at just 2 percent model year 2013 sales. The Chrysler brands, including Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and Fiat had no 2013 model year vehicle sales in June.

Two big Japanese brands, Toyota and Nissan, also had very few 2013 sales. Nissan is just rolling out the 2103 redesign of its popular Nissan Altima and will have a higher percentage of 2013 model year sales this month.

Surprisingly, many companies are still selling new vehicles left over from the 2011 model year. Sales of last year’s vehicles made up 25 percent of Volvo’s June sales, 5 percent each for Lincoln and Mitsubishi, and 3 percent each for the Jaguar, Land Rover and Chrysler.


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