Orange County Business Journal

OC Automakers’ July Sales Mixed

Kari Hamanaka Thursday, August 2, 2012

Local automakers’ sales last month were mixed while the annual pace of overall industry sales stayed on track to beat last year at more than 14 million vehicles.

Hyundai Motor America Inc., the largest automaker based here, beat its July sales record, selling 62,021 vehicles in July, up 4% from a year earlier.

July was “another solid month” for Hyundai, said executive vice president of sales Dave Zuchowski, even with demand “dampened a bit by ongoing shortages of core products, like Accent, Elantra and Sonata.”

Hyundai, part of South Korea-based Hyundai Kia Automotive Group, is temporarily headquartered in Costa Mesa while its Fountain Valley campus is built.

Hyundai sister company Kia Motors America Inc. of Irvine also continued to set new records for itself last month.

Kia sold 48,074 vehicles in July, up 5.6% from a year earlier. The July sales gain was the automaker’s best ever sales for the month, and marked its 23rd straight record-setting month.

Irvine-based Mazda North American Operations sold 19,318 vehicles in July, down 7% from a year earlier.

Sales of nearly every Mazda model were down in July. The only exception was sales of the MX-5 Miata sportscar, which totaled 590, up 3.7% from a year earlier.

Mitsubishi Motors North America of Cypress sold 4,194 vehicles, down 47.4% from a year earlier.

Sales were hit by three discontinued vehicle models, a trend the company said is expected to continue through the summer.

American Suzuki Motor Corp. of Brea sold 2,266 vehicles in July, down 7.4% from a year earlier.

July sales nationally were up 8.9% from a year earlier to 1.15 million vehicles, according to Woodcliff Lake, N.J.-based Autodata Corp.’s online industry researcher Motor Intelligence.