Sonic Q3 income, revenue unchanged from 2000

Sonic Automotive Inc. said Tuesday it earned a $22.1 million net income in the third quarter of 2001 compared with $22.05 million over the same period a year ago.

Total revenue for the period was $1.32 billion compared with $1.37 billion in 2000.

While revenue and earnings were nearly flat on a year-to-year comparative basis, same-store sales took a hit. Total same-store revenues declined 10.1 percent for the quarter as compared with 2000, while new-vehicle same-store sales dropped 10.2 percent, and used-vehicle same-store sales slid 15.5 percent.

Sonic said the declines were offset by increases in higher margin business such as parts and collision repair sales and finance and insurance.

In a press release, Sonic CEO O. Bruton Smith said the market is being fueled by “aggressive” manufacturer-provided incentives and that October is shaping up to be a strong month for sales and profits. Sonic has raised its outlook for the fourth quarter of 2001.

Sonic is No. 2 on the Automotive News ranking of the top 100 dealership groups in the United States with $5.6 billion in total 2000 group revenue.

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