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Old 07-01-2009   #1 (permalink)
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Ford close to taking largest-seller crown from General Motors

Ford Motor has crept to within 2 percentage points of becoming America's largest automaker, June sales figures show. General Motors has long held the spot -- but it won't much longer as its Saturn, Hummer, Saab and Pontiac divisions are about to be shed.

Not only did Ford creep up on the leader with strong Ford Fusion sales, but it fended off Toyota. In June 2008, Toyota was handily surpassing Ford's sales. Last month, Ford sales slipped only 10.7% over the previous year while Toyota was off a shocking 31.9%. GM, trying to keep up sales despite being in bankruptcy reorganization, was off 33.4%, Autodata reported. And Chrysler? Despite having emerged from Chapter 11 under control of Italy's Fiat, sales were clobbered -- off more than 41%.

Ford's F-150 was solidly America's top-selling vehicle, followed by Toyota Camry and Chevrolet Silverado. Interesting that pickups are back at the top of the sales charts after being hit by rising gas prices a year ago. At the time, they were written off as never becoming family haulers again. Now it's hard to tell if it's more than cowboys and contractors who are buying them.
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