Nissan North America's sales fell 15 percent in July to 108,792 vehicles as both car and truck sales slid by double-digit percentages from a year ago.
Nissan Division and the Infiniti luxury brand's combined car sales dropped 19 percent while light-truck salesfell 12 percent from July 2017.
The sales drop was worse than analysts had forecast. Cox Automotive analysts theorized that the automaker reduced fleet sales in the month. While Nissan does not provide a retail-fleet breakdown, Billy Hayes, Nissan Division vice president for regional operations, told Automotive News that Nissan plans to reduce fleet for the year, especially daily rental fleet.
Hayes called July "challenging" as industry sales slipped and consumers continued to opt for SUVs over cars. The company is reviewing its cadence of sales to see what happened around the July 4 holiday and at the end of the month to determine whether any tweaks need to be made going forward, he said.
"There wasn't anything that we can put our finger on that really happened other than probably just the industry" being down, he said.
For the first seven months of the year, Nissan North America's overall sales fell 6.2 percent.
Brands: Nissan, down 16%, Infiniti down 10%.
Notable nameplates: Altima, down 28% to 16,015;Maxima down 53% to 2,487;Leaf down 10% to 1,149; Murano, up 3.7% to 6,549; Pathfinder up 4.7% to 5,303; Titan up 4.9% to 3,977; Rogue down 18% to 26,535; Infiniti Q50 down 7.7% to 2,397; Infiniti QX50 up 35% to 1,609; Infiniti QX80 up 6.7% to 1,131.
Incentives: $4,199 for the Nissan and Infiniti brands combined, down 7.3 percent from July 2017, ALG estimates.
Average transaction price: $27,190 for Nissan and Infiniti combined, down 0.4 percent from a year ago, ALG estimates.
Quote: "They're just now landing on dealers' lots," Hayes said of the all-new Nissan Kicks subcompact crossover, which sold 2,375 vehicles in July, its second month on sale. "So some dealers saw their first one, and some of them just evaporated immediately.That seems to hit a part of the market where we haven't been in before. And we're seeing a very strong, quality customer come in on that vehicle."
Did you know? The Infiniti QX50 crossover, redesigned for the 2019 model year, marked its best July sales ever.