In an ideal world, levels of unsold inventory would reflect demand, and at the beginning of February that was the case.
Automakers got their U.S. inventory levels close to perfect — at least when it comes to mix.
The industry had an estimated 3,883,800 unsold vehicles on hand, representing an 84-day supply, based on the previous month's selling pace. Of that figure, 1,285,200 were cars, an 87-day supply, while 2,598,600 were light trucks, an 82-day supply.
That breaks down to 33 percent cars and 67 percent light trucks, or just one percentage point different from the January sales mix of 32 percent car, 68 percent light truck.
The 84-day supply represents a decline of one selling day from stock levels at the same point in 2017 and it is in line with each of the last five years.
Among manufacturers, Mitsubishi Motors North America had the highest days' supply as of Feb. 1 at 110 days, followed closely by Volkswagen Group of America and Ford Motor Co. at 108.
Mercedes-Benz USA had the lowest days' supply at 47, followed by Subaru of America's 53.
At the brand level, Fiat's 179-day supply of unsold inventory was the most on Feb. 1. Mercedes and Subaru had the lowest days' supply.
Among models still in production, two had supplies of more than 300 days: the Fiat Spider convertible at 319 and the Buick Regal at 308.
Ford's EcoSport — which recorded its first 500 units in January — had a 1,190-day supply as the automaker stocks its distribution channel.