July 24, 2024

Ford sales jump 7.1% in 2023, following strong results by GM, Toyota

Following strong results from rivals GM and Toyota, Ford (F) posted strong sales gains for the year, though only a modest gain in the fourth quarter following the end of a six-week labor strike.

For the year, Ford reported US sales total sales jumped 7.1% to approximately 1,995,912 vehicles, making it the Dearborn-based automaker’s best year since 2020. Ford noted strong sales in its trucks business, with 1,081,777 trucks and vans sold in 2023 – up 13%. Across its nameplates, Ford saw noted growth with the Bronco Sport (up 28.1%), Edge (up 24.1%), and Lincoln Navigator (up 32.9%), among others.

Ford’s sales of hybrids and EVs were also a highlight, with sales up 25.3% and 17.9% respectively. Ford says it is now the number 2 EV seller in the US, behind only Tesla with 61,575 EVs sold last year. Within its EV segment, Ford said F-150 Lightning EV sales were up xx%, and that Mustang Mach-E sales of 40,771 for the year were a 3% improvement, and its best year since launching in 2021.

SAN MARCOS, TEXAS - JANUARY 03: A Ford Bronco is seen for sale on the Griffith Ford dealership lot on January 03, 2024 in San Marcos, Texas. Auto sales rose sharply within the first nine months of 2023, with analysts projecting a 13% increase from the prior year once all automakers release their figures. Pent-up demand and the alleviation of shortages due to supply chain hiccups and labor disruptions is being attributed to the gains. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

Like other automakers, Ford’s push into hybrids comes as customers prefer the efficiency and lower cost of entry compared to EVS, especially with truck offerings. Ford reported Maverick Hybrid pickup sales hit 52,361 last year, a 67% gain, which is more than half of Maverick’s total sales in 2023. The F-150 Hybrid posted a 41% jump in sales year over year, with 50,103 units sold.

“In a year of challenges, from a labor strike to supply issues, our amazing lineup of gas, electric and hybrid vehicles and our fantastic dealers delivered solid growth and momentum. We have the products that customers want,” Ford CEO Jim Farley said in a statement. “I am especially proud Ford remained the No. 2 EV brand in America and our next-gen, digitally advanced new EVs are on the way.”

The UAW labor strike appeared to limit Ford in Q4, albeit slightly. Ford said Q4 sales were up only 0.8% compared to a year ago, as the UAW strike extended into October, and likely required weeks of ramping following its end. Bronco SUV, Expedition SUV, and Transit Connect Van sales took a hit in Q4 as Kentucky Truck Plant and other Ford facilities were impacted by strike-related activities.

Ford’s strong overall yearly numbers follow a big year for GM, which saw sales climb 14% in 2023, and Toyota, with the Japanese automaker reporting a 6.6% rise in sales in the US.

Ford CEO Jim Farley said the company was “spring-loaded” for a big 2024 as well, noting new versions of popular trucks and SUVs, new Super Duty truck and Mustang sales, as well as new vehicles for Lincoln on the way.

But it wasn’t all good news for Ford in 2023 — recalls and steep costs associated with them bit the automaker. Most recently Ford announced another recall of its F-150 pickup, with nearly 113,000 affected by a rear axle hub bolt that “may fatigue and break,” causing a loss of power and risk of accident. Last year Ford the automaker experiencing the most recalls, with 57 recalls announced affecting over 6 million vehicles, per NHTSA and Department of Transportation data.

Pras Subramanian is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. You can follow him on Twitter and on Instagram.

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