By George Polgar
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – July sales tallies saw the US auto industry continue its drive back to peak levels, approaching 17 million units per year.
Across the board, foreign and domestic car makers are enjoying the ride with Toyota leading the majors with an 11.6 percent increase, GM and Ford posting 9.4 and 9.5 percent gains respectively, and Chrysler with a 19.7 percent surge.
Locally-based Subaru posted a whopping 27 percent jump.
Meanwhile Nissan continues its drive for the number two US import spot with an 11.6 percent increase, besting arch rival Honda which dropped 3.9 percent in sales while still beating Nissan in overall sales by some 14,000 units.
And while a strengthening economy and steady fuel prices underlie the growth of the auto sector, contrarians will point out that the standout sales are supported by two pillars which have crumbled in the past.
SUV and Truck sales dominate the stats and discounts, cash-back offers, 0-percent financing and irresistibly low cost leases are once again tantalizing consumers.
If gas prices spike or the economy hiccups, many consumers may once again be out on a limb with too much car and too little cash!