Ford Motor on Wednesday posted a 9.8% decline in quarterly U.S. auto sales, as a drop in sales of its profitable trucks outweighed higher demand for sport utility vehicles (SUV).
The second-largest U.S. automaker sold 542,749 vehicles in the fourth quarter, declining from 601,862 a year ago.
The automaker posted a 12.5% drop in truck sales, while passenger car sales dropped 41.1% as it continues to phase out traditional sedan models in North America that have become increasingly unpopular with customers.
Sales of its SUVs, however, increased 4% to 216,732 units.
“Fourth quarter represented an inflection point at Ford in our transition from cars to a much greater focus on iconic trucks, SUVs, and electric automobiles,” said Andrew Frick, vice president at Ford’s sales in the United States and Canada.
“We are well positioned to see the benefits of our focused efforts throughout 2021,” Frick added.
General Motors reported a 4.8% increase in U.S. sales for the fourth quarter on Tuesday, while Toyota Motor and Volkswagen AG recorded a sales boost of 9.4% and 10.8%, respectively.
Industry experts expect a recovery in demand this year, fueled by the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines, record low interest rates and healthy consumer savings as people avoid spending money on big purchases and vacations during the coronavirus crisis.