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Toyota overtakes Chrysler in August US market

US research firm Morgan & Company reports that US new light vehicle sales totalled 1,630,904 in August, down 4.5% from August of 2002. There were, however, 27 selling days in the current sales month and 28 selling days in August last year.

Daily selling rate (DSR) adjusted, light vehicle sales fell by just 1.0% in August compared to the same period last year.

On an annualized basis, August light vehicle sales reached 19.0 million units, the highest rate since October of 2001. Light truck sales were up 5.4% for the month, capturing 54.7% of the total market. Car sales stumbled again in August, down 7.8%.

The traditional Big Three saw a combined sales decline of 5.9% in August which equalled a market share drop of over 3.0%. General Motors sales were relatively strong, down 0.7% in August. Ford Motor sales dropped 13.1% for the month. Chrysler Group sales fell by 6.4%.

Foreign brands increased their share of the market to 42.1% in August. European brand sales increased by 3.7%, and now account for 6.7% of US sales. Asian brand sales were up by 7.3%, pushing their share of the market to 35.4%.

Toyota, including Lexus, sold 200,482 vehicles in August, surpassing Chrysler for the first time.

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