auto

February's Sales Put Carmakers in the Fast Lane

It was a good month for auto sales despite inclement weather across much of the country and surging oil prices. Cars sold near an annual pace of 13 million vehicles. That would make February the best on record since the "cash for clunkers" rebate program in 2009.

Ford's Sales Climb 14% on Explorers, Fuel-Efficient Models

Ford reported Tuesday that its sales in February rose 14% compared to a year ago, in part due to strong sales of the revamped Ford Explorer sports-utility vehicle, the Fusion midsized sedan and the Ford Escape compact SUV. Total sales for the month hit 156,626.

GM's February Gain Outpaced Forecasts

Consumers snapped up new GM models despite the steadily rising price of gas. GM said Tuesday that it sold 207,028 vehicles during the month, exceeding analyst expectations. The increase was driven largely by a 70% jump in retail, or individual consumer, sales.

Just What Detroit's Revival Doesn't Need Now

As it did in the summer of 2008, when prices at the pump soared above $4 a gallon, big price jumps at the gas pump may give car buyers reason to pause and cause vehicle sales to stall. At least the carmakers now have more fuel-efficient fleets, except for Chrysler, which is still catching up.

Will GM Post Its First Annual Profit Since 2004?

Or will it disappoint? Investors -- and taxpayers -- will be watching on Thursday, when GM is posts its latest earnings. Despite analyst expectations of a full-year profit, the automaker has warned that fourth-quarter results will fall "significantly" from previous periods.

How Hyundai Turned a Corner in the U.S.

Despite tepid industry sales last year, sister South Korean carmakers Hyundai and Kia set sales records, thanks to savvy designs and sophisticated engineering. They've come a long way from their early econo-box image. Now, if they could just do as well at home.

GM and Chrysler Will Pay Bonuses to Salaried Workers

Less than two years after they exited bankruptcy, Chrysler Group and General Motors will soon distribute bonuses to salaried employees in recognition of their efforts to help revive the once-flagging Detroit automakers. The payout is likely to anger the companies' unionized workers.

Toyota Fights Recall Woes and Stronger Yen

The Japanese automaker's bottom line is likely to have been affected by its continuing safety recalls, weaker U.S. sales and the rising value of the yen, which has made exports more expensive. Analysts forecast Toyota will report a quarterly profit of about $1 billion on sales of $56.2 billion.

U.S. Auto Sales Surge in January on Strong Consumer Demand

Despite wintry weather across much of the nation, U.S. consumers were in a car-buying mood last month, boosting most automakers' sales by double-digit percentages compared to a year ago. Analysts estimate that January's sales reached the second-fastest pace in 17 months.

Ford Posts 13% Sales Gain in January

Ford Motor said sales of its cars and trucks rose 13.3% in January on improved demand by consumers, bucking last year's trend, when sales to fleet customers largely drove the increase. For the month, the automaker sold 127,317 units, up 13.3% compared to a year ago.

General Motors Sales Rose 22% in January

General Motors sales rose 21.8% in January compared to a year ago on strong sales across its lines of passenger cars, "crossover" vehicles and trucks, the automaker said Tuesday. Each of the automaker's four divisions recorded higher sales for the month.

Though Chrysler Is Still Unprofitable, Employees Earn a $750 Bonus

Union employees at Chrysler Group will receive a $750 bonus next week as an acknowledgment of their contributions in helping to revive the once-bankrupt company, the automaker said Monday. Salaried workers, excluding the company's top 50 executives, will also receive the payment.

Ford Shares Tank on Its Earnings Disappointment

Ford shares headed down sharply after the company announced quarterly earnings 18 cents per-share lower than analyst expectations. The miss cast a shadow on the report from Ford, which posted its best annual profit in a more than decade -- $6.6 billion.

GM Withdraws $14 Billion Federal Loan Application

Back in 2009, General Motors applied to the Department of Energy for $14.4 billion in loans to help it manufacture more fuel-efficient vehicles. Today, with the automaker making big strides in turning around its business, GM said it no longer needs or wants the money.

Ford May Post Its Best Yearly Profit in a Decade

Analysts forecast that Ford will announce a profit of 48 cents a share on revenue of about $30.6 billion when it releases earnings on Friday. That translates into an expected pretax profit of $8 billion in 2010, the best Ford has seen since 1999.

Ford Recalls 525,000 Windstar Minivans for Steering Issue

Ford is recalling more than half a million minivans to repair parts that could corrode and affect vehicle handling. The action involves Ford Windstar minivans from the 1999 to 2003 model years that were sold in cold-weather areas where salt is routinely used to de-ice roads.

Toyota Keeps Slim Lead Over GM Despite Recall Woes

Toyota managed to hold onto the title of world's No. 1 automaker last year, despite numerous safety recalls that took a toll on its sales. Toyota sold 8.42 million vehicles worldwide in 2010, enough to barely edge out resurgent General Motors, which rang up sales of 8.39 million.

No Longer the 'Big Three,' but They've Stopped Shrinking

With U.S. automotive dominance waning, a new moniker has emerged: the "Detroit Three." But don't count out Ford, GM or Chrysler -- their post-recession future looks strong, thanks to some agonizing restructuring. Now, they can be profitable selling fewer cars.

Chrysler Rolls Out Plans for a Hybrid of a Different Kind

Chrysler has finally decided to jump on the hybrid bandwagon, announcing Wednesday that it is working with the EPA to develop a hydraulic hybrid powertrain for its vehicles. The system, which stores energy derived from vehicle braking as pressure, could improve fuel economy by 30% to 35%.

Chrysler Finds It Can Be Profitable Selling Fewer Cars

The smallest of the Detroit Three, Chrysler has made substantial strides in turning around its business, including lowering the number of vehicles it needs to sell to make a profit. The automaker had pegged 1.65 million as its operating break-even point, but has just lowered this to about 1.5 million vehicles.