Michigan residents would pay a lower sales tax when they trade in cars under legislation overwhelming approved Wednesday by the state Senate as lawmakers seek to jumpstart car sales with a proposal that has stalled in recent years.
Ford sales jump 22 percent in January. Chrysler and GM post 16 percent sales gains.
Chrysler says its U.S. sales rose 16 percent last month for its best January in five years.
U.S. auto sales hit a five-year high in 2012, as low interest rates, improving consumer confidence and – most important – some great new cars drew buyers into dealerships.
Ford’s new C-Max has become the fastest-selling hybrid ever at launch, with 8,030 sales in its first two full months on the market in October and November. This significantly outpaces Toyota Camry Hybrid’s 7,300 sales in its first two full months in May and June 2006.
A slowdown in job growth is seen in southeast Michigan by Comerica Bank as auto sales are leveling off.
Chrysler sales are up 10 percent; General Motors up 5 percent, and Ford sales are flat.
Problems in Europe took a big bite out of GM’s second quarter earnings, but not quite as much as analysts expected.
Chrysler today reported a second-quarter net income of $436 million, a more than $800 million turnaround from a year ago, when the automaker paid off the last of its government bailout loans.
All three domestic car companies posted double-digit sales increases in May. There are also signs that the Japanese carmakers are rebounding from last year’s earthquake and tsunami.