A recent IHS Automotive analysis of U.S. new vehicle market share among vehicle manufacturers indicates the competition at the top has never been greater.
In the past 14 years, market share range among the eight largest OEMs in the United States has quietly declined from nearly 26 percentage points in 2000 to just 14 percentage points through October of this year, reflecting how intense the competition truly is in this market. The volume dynamic has also changed, with nearly 17.5 million vehicles registered in 2000. Based on the IHS Automotive projection for U.S. sales in 2015 to reach 16.7 million units, to gain 1% share, an automaker needs to sell an additional 167,000 vehicles. In 2009, during the trough of the recession, 1% could be gained by selling 104,000 vehicles.
General Motors and Ford Motor Company continue to lead the U.S. market, though their shares have shifted dramatically over time. Chrysler (now FCA) and Toyota have exchanged ranks in third place since 2000, with Toyota’s share increasing. Honda has remained as the fifth largest OEM based on market share, and its share has improved over time. Hyundai has improved nearly 6 percentage points in the timeframe, the largest increase among the top manufacturers.
“Since no OEM wants to slip in the rankings, each is doing everything possible to retain each tenth of a point share; including speeding up product redesign or launch programs, while opting to avoid risky product programs that could cause disruption in their product portfolio,” said Tom Libby, solutions consultant at IHS Automotive, who worked on the research.
With no manufacturer accounting for more than 18% of the U.S. market, the battle for consumer share will be fought on the marketing front more than ever before. This parity among the leading OEMs is moving them to identify and utilize the most efficient marketing tools across a wide array of potential marketing channels, including traditional national TV and print advertising and a nearly overwhelming variety of digital advertising tools and platforms.
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