Ford Sales Drop 7% in November, Cars Down 20%

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Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) on Monday reported November sales fell by 6.9% year over year to 196,303 Ford and Lincoln vehicles, compared with November 2017 sales of 210,771. Passenger car sales fell 19.5% in the month while truck sales dropped 2.3% and sport utility vehicle sales fell 4.9%.

Total retail sales fell 6.8% year over year in November to 145,495 units and fleet sales dropped by 7.1% to 50,808 units. Sales of F-Series pickups fell 0.9% to 72,102 units for a record ninth straight month in which sales exceeded 70,000 units.

Ford’s passenger car sales continued tumbled further in November, but Ford remains upbeat on its strategy prioritize SUV, van and truck sales. More than four out of five November sales came from that priority group, and average transaction pricing came in at a record $37,000 for the month, up by $1,600 year over year.

Total monthly sales compare to an estimate of 185,000 by analysts Cox Automotive. Kelley Blue Book estimated an average transaction price of $39,963, down 0.2% year over year and down 0.3% compared with October’s average selling price of $40,095. KBB transaction prices do not include applied consumer incentives.

F-Series transaction prices are running “close to” of $47,000 per truck, some $1,800 above the industry average for the segment.

Truck sales comprised 46% of November sales, and the F-Series pickups accounted for 36.7% of total monthly sales. Truck sales month over month were essentially flat on a percentage basis, while F-Series sales ticked up 0.1 points.

Total Ford SUV sales dropped 6.8% year over year in November with Expedition sales up 7.9% to 4,264 and Explorer sales down by 17.8% to 17,696 units. The company’s best-selling SUV, the Escape, posted sales of 21,516 units in October, down 14.3% year over year for the month.

Ford-brand passenger car sales dropped by 19.1% year over year, with sales of Fusion up 11.8% and Focus sales down 66.1%. Mustang sales dipped by 27% to 4,907 units, while Fiesta sales rose 72.6% to 5,238 units.

Sales of the Lincoln brand rose by 3% year over year in November as sales of Lincoln cars dropped by 26.1%. Car sales totaled 2,116 units in the month and SUV sales totaled 7,091 units, up by 17.3% year over year. Navigator sales rose 27.3% to 1,566 units.

Ford reported 85 days of total inventory, down by two days compared with October and seven more days compared with November of last year. Dealer stock totaled 67 days of supply, compared with 68 days in October and 62 last year.

Ford’s stock traded up about 3.9% Monday morning at $9.78, on reports that China will lower its tariffs on imports of U.S.-made cars. The stock’s 52-week trading range is $8.17 to $13.48, and the 12-month consensus price target is $9.89.