FCAU’s US sales in September
In September, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ (FCAU) US sales totaled 199,819 units, ~14.7% higher than the company’s US sales of 174,266 units in the same month of 2017 and ~3.1% up from the 193,718 units it sold in August.
September was the sixth consecutive month during which FCAU’s sales recovered YoY (year-over-year) in the US market after 18 consecutive months of YoY falls.
Solid US retail sales
Fiat Chrysler’s retail sales remained solid at 149,713 vehicle units with an increase of ~1.9% YoY, also higher than Ford Motor Company’s (F) home market retail sales of 148,233 units last month. In August, FCAU’s US retail sales also rose ~17% YoY, while in July, they rose ~6% YoY.
Consistent gains in its retail segment sales were one of the reasons why Fiat Chrysler’s total US sales rose in September. As a percentage of its total US sales, Fiat Chrysler’s September retail sales volumes were ~75%, lower than ~85% in August.
A steep rise in fleet sales
In September, Fiat Chrysler’s fleet sales witnessed a steep rise of ~83% YoY to 50,106 vehicle units, accounting for ~25% of its total US sales. This figure was also significantly higher than its fleet sales of 28,991 units in August, which fell 19% YoY. Since early 2017, Fiat Chrysler has been reducing its US fleet sales to the daily rental segment to improve its operating margins, just like US giant General Motors (GM). Daily rental segment sales typically result in lower profit margins for auto companies (FXD) compared to their profits from retail sales.
Nonetheless, September’s recovery in fleet sales could help FCAU to gain a higher market share in the United States. It’s noteworthy that due to this planned cut in fleet sales, FCAU has lost its US market share to its peers Toyota Motor (TM), GM, and Ford in the last few quarters.
Continue to the next article to learn about how Fiat Chrysler’s car and truck segment sales shook out in September.