The auto industry reached an important milestone in September that makes it the “bright, shining start” of the U.S. economic recovery, says Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics.
Get the latest statistics on U.S. auto sales to date.
Carmakers sold cars and light trucks at an annualized rate of 14.9 million, taking into account seasonal adjustments, according to researcher Autodata Corp. That’s the best pace since March 2008, before the failure of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.
Toyota Motor Corp led with the biggest gain in September, with sales surging 42 percent and topping the 36 percent gain that was the average estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
The U.S. sales rate exceeded the 14.5 million pace that was the average estimate of 16 analysts in Bloomberg’s survey. The rate is the best industry sales pace since 14.95 million in March 2008, according to Autodata.
Honda…boosted sales in September by 31 percent, topping the 26 percent average estimate of eight analysts. Toyota Corolla deliveries climbed 43 percent to 23,026 and RAV4 sales surged 80 percent to 13,796, the Toyota City, Japan-based automaker said in a statement.