The U.S. auto market got a boost from brisk sales in December, helping the industry set another annual record for the most new cars sold in a year, the automakers said.
High demand for sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and pickup trucks drove up total sales for the year to 17.54 million vehicles, according to statistics compiled by the trade magazine, Automotive News. It was the seventh year in a row that U.S. car sales set a record for the number of units sold, the magazine said. The number of cars sold in December was up 3 percent to 1.69 million.
The results, driven by low petrol prices across the country and low interest rates, were better than analysts' expectations. General Motors, the largest U.S. carmaker, saw its sales in December rise 10 percent over the same month last year. Ford, the second-largest U.S. carmaker, saw its sales increase 0.1 percent. Nissan and Honda set new US sales records for December last month.