U.S. auto sales sank in the first quarter for General Motors (GM), Toyota Motor (TM) and Honda Motor (HMC), but all beat sales estimates. GM stock fell Friday as supply and production disruptions, which are limiting vehicle sales, persist for now.
In the next few days, Tesla (TSLA) is expected to report global Q1 deliveries.
U.S. Auto Sales To Sharply Slow
Industry wide, the annualized pace of new auto sales in March will reach 12.7 million vehicles , J.D. Power and LMC Automotive estimated. That would be down by more than 1 million units vs. February and down by more than 5 million vs. March 2021.
Lower sales are mainly due to tight supplies from the pandemic-fueled chip and parts shortages. Demand remains robust, analysts said. Meanwhile, the Russia-Ukraine war is adding to supply pressures.
Here is how automakers performed in Q1 2022 vs. Cox Automotive expectations. The results show sales volume, as well as sales growth or decline vs. a year ago.
Toyota Motor Auto Sales
Q1 2022 sales estimate: 510,348 vehicles, down 15% vs. Q1 2021.
Results: Toyota sold 514,592 vehicles, a 14.7% decline. Sales of electric and hybrid vehicles fell 4% in Q1, Toyota said. But they made up more than a quarter (26%) of overall sales, amid soaring gas prices.
Toyota Motor stock edged up 0.1% on the stock market today.
Q1 2022 sales estimate: 485,330, down 24% vs. Q1 2021.
Results: GM sold 512,486 vehicles, down 20%. The auto giant sold 99 Hummer EVs in the model’s first full quarter of sales. Globally, automakers are making a big shift from gas and diesel cars to electric vehicles. Commercial sales in Q1 reached the highest level in nearly three years, GM said.
During last quarter, improving semiconductor supplies gave a boost to production and truck share, GM said.
“Supply chain disruptions are not fully behind us, but we expect to continue outperforming 2021 production levels, especially in the second half of the year,” GM North America President Steve Carlisle said in a statement Friday.
Next week, GM and Ford will halt production at some Michigan plants. This week, Stellantis halted production just across the river at its Windsor assembly plant, in Ontario, Canada. Ford tied the production hit to the ongoing chip shortage, while GM and Stellantis did not specify what components were in short supply.
GM stock fell 1.8% Friday.
Q1 2022 sales estimate: 431,123, down 17% vs. Q1 2021.
Results: Check back later.
Ford stock lost 1.5%.
Q1 2022 sales estimate: 411,174, down 13% vs. Q1 2021.
Results: Check back Friday.
Stellantis stock edged up 0.5%.
Honda Motor Auto Sales
Q1 2022 sales estimate: 252,205, down 27% vs. Q1 2021.
Results: Honda sold 266,418 vehicles, down 23%.
Honda stock tilted 0.1% higher Friday.
Ford’s F-150 Lightning On Track
Despite the supply challenges hitting auto stocks at large, Ford’s F-150 Lightning remains on track. Deliveries are set to begin in spring, a company spokesperson tweeted March 18.
The Lightning EV is arguably the biggest vehicle launch of the year. It’s the first all-electric version of Ford’s — and America’s — top-selling vehicle, the F-150 pickup truck.
In January, demand for the electric pickup truck hoisted Ford stock briefly to a market cap above $100 billion.
Find Aparna Narayanan on Twitter at @IBD_Aparna.
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