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Detroit automakers post August sales gains

Sept. 4, 2012 at 2:54 PM

DETROIT, Sept. 4 (UPI) -- All three Detroit automakers posted double-digit year-on-year gains in sales of cars and light trucks in August, with Chrysler leading the way at 14.1 percent.

Chrysler LLC said it sold 40,895 cars and 107,577 light trucks in the month -- 148,472 total sales compared to 130,119 total sales in August 2011.

Ford Motor Co. sold 196,749 vehicles, a 12.6 percent increase over the 174,800 sold in August 2011. Sales at General Motors Co. rose 10.1 percent August-to-August, with sales of 218,479 in 2011 and 240,520 in 2012.

Among major automakers worldwide, Germany's Volkswagen Group of America recorded the largest annual increase, with 52,574 light vehicles sold in August 2012 compared to 35,585 in August 2011 -- a 47.7 jump.

Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. reported sales up 45.6 percent with 188,520 sold in August 2012 and 129,483 sold in August 2011.

Auto industry analysts said total U.S. auto sales were expected to increase 17 percent to 20 percent for August, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Ford said it will increase production in the fourth quarter by 7 percent over fourth-quarter 2011 levels, although its third-quarter production will be less than it had forecast, the newspaper said.

Ken Czubay, Ford vice president for U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service, said rising fuel prices in August prompted more buyers to "gravitate toward our fuel-efficient vehicles."

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