In the first nine months of this year, sales of new cars and light trucks rose 1.3 percent over 2003. In a perfect world, that would indicate that sales of every car line and every truck line were just about the same in both years.
But we don't live in a perfect world.
An Automotive News analysis of the 306 nameplates currently listed in the monthly and year-to-date sales reports shows that 54 had sales increases of 10 percent or more for nine months. They are having a very good year.
But another 141 nameplates were down 10 percent or more. For them, this is not a good year at all. The other 111 car and truck lines were in the middle ground; some were up and some were down, but their changes were less than 10 percent. A nameplate is a segment of a brand. For example, Chevrolet is a brand; Malibu, Impala and Silverado are nameplates.
Among the Big 3 North American makes, 23 nameplates showed sales gains of at least 10 percent, and 57 lost at least that much. Proportionally, the import-badged brands were about the same: 31 nameplates went up 10 percent or more, and 84 declined at least 10 percent.