DALLAS -- Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. said vehicle deliveries fell 6 percent in July, dragged down by a car-heavy mix and one less selling day.
The financial incentives used to move slow-selling cars at its two brands also fell sharply from a year earlier, according to industry estimates.
Light trucks were a bright spot for both Toyota and luxury sibling Lexus, reflecting the sharp industry trend toward crossovers, SUVs and pickups. Car sales overall fell 18 percent in July, while light trucks were up by 2.2 percent.
Brands: Toyota down 5.1 percent; Lexus down 12 percent.
Notable nameplates: Toyota Camry down 22%; Toyota Corolla down 5.6%; Toyota C-HR up 7%; Toyota RAV4 down 1.7%; Toyota Highlander up 11%; Toyota Tacoma up 26%; Lexus NX down 14%; Lexus RX up 1.5%; Lexus LS up 77%; Lexus ES down 32%.
Incentives: $2,346 per unit, down 18% from a year earlier, according to estimates by ALG.
Average transaction price: $31,505, up 3% from a year earlier, ALG says.
Quote: "The massive drops in July car sales demonstrate we haven't hit rock bottom yet -- even Honda and Toyota car sales plummeted," said Michelle Krebs, executive analyst for Autotrader. "Accord and Civic were down double digits; Toyota Camry dropped nearly 20 percent [on a daily selling rate basis]. One driver of the continued decline is likely the plethora of used cars and, more importantly, nearly new utility vehicles coming off lease and back into the market. As affordability becomes more of an issue, used vehicles provide a value alternative to new sedans."
Did you know? Toyota brands have pulled back their incentives to the point where the automaker is back in line with the stingier Japanese companies: Honda and Subaru. Toyota's July incentives as a percentage of average transaction price fell by one-fifth compared with last year to 7.4%. That's pretty close to Honda's 6.8%, although Subaru still leads the group at 5.5%, according to ALG. In July 2017, Toyota's incentive spending at 9.3% of ATP was higher than Mercedes and nearly tied with BMW. Last month, only Toyota, Honda and Subaru were holding incentives below 10% of average transaction prices.