Ford Motor Co.’s 2012 sales were up 4.7 percent over last year. In fact, the company’s sales have increased about 39 percent over the last three years, making for its strongest run since the mid-1980s when the Ford Taurus took the title of best-selling car in America back from the Japanese.
Still, Ford’s share of the market slipped to 15.5 percent from 16.8 percent in 2011.
Ford’s chief economist, Ellen Hughes-Cromwick, said the end of the Bush-era tax cuts for wealthier Americans — individuals making $400,000 or more and couples making $450,000 or more — would have little impact on sales because they only account for about 2 percent of new vehicle purchases.
But she said Ford is concerned about the impact of the end of the payroll tax holiday for all working Americans.
“It is something we are looking at very carefully,” she said. “It will crimp consumer spending somewhat in the months ahead.”
That impact could be felt deep into 2013, Hughes-Cromwick said, because many consumers base their spending on what they earn during the first three months of the year.
Still, Ford expects industry-wide sales could hit 16 million units this year.
Source : AutoNews