Trucks are hot, and they’re getting hotter. But not in the ways you may expect. We’ve all seen the headlines about trucks getting more expensive, and that supply is short for some of the most popular models, like the Ford F-150, thanks to computer chip shortages. But, overall, we’re seeing a slide in full-size truck sales right now across the board.
Trucks sales are down, but the share is going up.
Cars and trucks are kind of a commodity, like oil, corn or pork bellies. When demand is up, prices go up. Demand is up for every kind of vehicle right now, but automakers made fewer trucks in 2020 and 2021 because of the pandemic and a lack of computer chips. But that could be changing.
According to sales figures from Car Sales Base, though, truck sales are down. Last year, the truck market was down to a seven-year low, and it’s falling even further this year. Overall, manufacturers have sold 981,000 trucks in the first half of this year compared to 1.166 million in the first half of 2021. However, the percentage of trucks sold compared to other vehicles has gone up a tiny bit, which means that a larger share of people buy trucks than other kinds of vehicles.
Why are truck sales down?
Ford saw a 10.7% decline in sales for its F-150 in August, but that was because the chip shortage simply limited the number of trucks Ford could build. Similar issues hit other manufacturers, too. Also, as gas prices jumped to $5 or more this spring, that dissuaded a lot of people from buying full-sized trucks and smaller pickups like the Ford Maverick, which gets up to 40 mpg, were stealing sales from the bigger trucks.
Speaking of smaller trucks, the Hyundai Santa Fe, the Maverick, and the Nissan Frontier are selling well. So are the GM twins, the GMC Canyon and the Chevy Colorado, as well as the Ford Ranger. People are realizing that these trucks will do most of what a full-sized truck can do, however, they get better gas mileage and are easier to park.
The Chevy Silverado bumped the Ram 1500 from the No. 2 spot
The Ford F-150 remains the best-selling truck in the U.S., but in the first half of the year Chevy sold nearly 262,000 Silverados, compared to the 245,000 trucks Ram sold. The newly redesigned Toyota Tundra saw sales of 44,000 while Nissan’s Titan brings up the rear with just 11,000 sold in the first half of the year. Nissan announced it’s killing the Titan off in a couple of years, which means that it won’t get many updates or new investment from Nissan, and sales of the truck will likely continue to slide. GMC sold 119,000 Sierras, which put it in fourth place for the year, while it counted just 371 GMC Hummer EV pickup sales this year.
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