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Toyota Overtakes Ford Once Again

Toyota's forward surge continues as the Japanese car manufacturer overtook Ford once again in terms of sales for the month of May. The biggest Japanese carmaker posted a 14 percent increase in sales as compared to last year's May sales figures. The increased sale for Toyota marked the third time in seven months that they have overtaken Ford in the United States auto market.

This moves the Japanese carmaker closer to becoming the second largest car manufacturer in the United States. This is because the Ford Motor Company is still struggling with selling their large vehicles like their pickup and SUV units. The company also reduced the number of vehicles allocated for rental companies. That step further reduced their monthly sales.

Analyst Rebecca Lindland for Global Insight commented that Toyota will continue its growth while Ford is expected to struggle. "We're going to continue to see Ford struggle as they go through their transition period," she said. "We're going to continue to see Toyota pushing forward."

In terms of the performance of the United States auto industry, a 5 percent increase was posted last month. Last month marked the highest number of vehicles sold so far this year at a total of 1.56 million cars and light trucks. Major car manufacturers increased their sales except for Ford which gave way to the five percent increase in overall sale. Combined, Asian car manufacturers grabbed 41.4 percent of the US auto market and that is an increase of 1.2 percent as compared to last year for the same period. In contrast, American automakers' control of the market dropped by one percent as compared to last year for the same period. The Big Three cornered 51.9 percent of the US auto market for the month of May.

Toyota sold 269,023 cars and light trucks combined last month. That sales output marked the best May figures in the history of the car manufacturer. The record was set with the help of the tripled sale of the popular gas-electric hybrid Toyota Prius. The Japanese outfit sold more than 20,000 units of the Prius for the month of May. The popularity of the Prius is evident in the fact that for the month of May, it was the ninth best-selling vehicle in the United States and acts like a Toyota headlight in showing the way forward for the company. In contrast, Ford posted a 6.8 percent sales plunge. Last month marked the seventh consecutive month that Ford posted a sales drop. Surprisingly, General Motors posted a 9.6 percent sales increase.

Meanwhile, DaimlerChrysler posted the second month of sales increase. The company recently agreed to sell the ailing American auto brand. The Chrysler Group though posted a 4.3 percent sales increase, thanks to the increased sales of the new Dodge Nitro and the redesigned Jeep Wrangler. Both of these vehicles are what the company looks for to once again attract car buyers to the brand.

According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), the increasing price of gasoline which has reached a record breaking $3.23 has turned away car buyers for months. In fact, US auto sale has only increased once before May and that was in March. Last month marked only the second month that the auto industry sale in the United States posted a positive number.

About The Author Anthony Fontanelle is a 35-year-old automotive buff who grew up in the Windy City. He does freelance work for an automotive magazine when he is not busy customizing cars in his shop.
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