DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co.'s U.S. sales rose 4.1 percent in August thanks to gains in fleet and favorable comparisons to a year ago, when Hurricane Harvey crippled sales in Texas, the industry's largest pickup market.
The automaker's fleet sales jumped 15 percent, while retail sales rose 1.1 percent. Ford Motor's car sales dropped 21 percent while pickup/van sales rose 5.9 percent and CUV/SUV sales jumped 20 percent.
Mark LaNeve, Ford's head of U.S. marketing, sales and service, said a majority of the fleet gain came from Ford's commercial business, which was up 20 percent.
Much of the Ford brand's sales increase was driven by its F-series pickups, which achieved their 16th consecutive year-over-year gain. The nameplate remains on pace to break the record 939,511 vehicles sold in 2004.
Sales at Ford's Lincoln luxury brand rose 2.7 percent behind gains for all of its utilities except the woeful MKT. Each of Lincoln's remaining two car offerings dropped by double digits.
For the year, Ford Motor's sales are down 1.2 percent from 2017.
Brands: Ford up 4.2%, Lincoln up 2.7%.
Notable nameplates: F series up 6.3% to 81,839, Mustang up 35%, Fusion down 35%, Explorer up 16%, Expedition up 95%, Lincoln Continental down 23%, Lincoln MKC up 3.4%, Lincoln Navigator up 102%.
Incentives: $4,649 per vehicle, up 8.2% from August 2017, according to ALG estimates.
Average transaction price: $37,137, up 4.2% from August 2017, according to ALG estimates.
Fleet mix: 24.1%, down 2.3 percentage points from July and up 0.6 percentage point from August 2017.
Inventory: 605,851, a 75-day supply. That compares with 605,135, also a 75-day supply, in July.
Quote: "It's a great franchise for us and we'd be remiss for not capitalizing on it," LaNeve said of the Mustang. "We will be putting more marketing muscle behind it."
Did you know? Ford says it's the nation's top seller of pickups, SUVs and vans combined. Its sales of those vehicles are up 3.6 percent through the first eight months of the year to 1.3 million vehicles.