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Ford's Europe Sales Rise 6.3% in April, Lag Industry Growth

Ford Motor Co. F recorded a 6.3% year-over-year rise in sales to 113,400 vehicles in its 20 traditional European markets (Euro 20) in Apr 2016. With this, the automaker lagged the industry’s sales growth rate of 9.5%. This is the company’s best April sales since 2009. In the first four months of 2016, Ford’s sales increased 8% to 477,000 vehicles, compared with the industry’s growth rate of 8.7%.

Considering all the 50 European markets, Ford’s sales rose 4.7% to 129,600 units in the month. With this, the automaker’s monthly sales lagged the industry sales growth of 6.7%. In the first four months of 2016, Ford’s sales increased 7.5% to 530,900 vehicles, compared with the industry’s growth rate of 5.8%.

Ford’s Euro 20 market share dipped 0.3 percentage points to 7.6% in April but remained flat with the year-ago period at 8.1% in the first four months of 2016. The automaker’s sales in the higher value retail and fleet segments accounted for 72% of total passenger car sales in the month, up 1 percentage point year over year and 3 percentage points higher than the industry average.

Ford’s commercial vehicle sales went up 18.9% to 26,040 units in April. This is the best April sales since 1993. Further, the market share of its commercial vehicles was 12.3%. This sales performance helped Ford to become the highest-selling commercial vehicle brand in Europe in April.

Ford plans to launch seven all-new or revamped vehicles in Europe this year, including the recently launched Transit Custom and Transit 2-tonne. This should drive sales in the future. These vehicles include the new Kuga and Edge SUVs, Fiesta ST200, S-MAX Vignale, Edge Vignale, Kuga Vignale, and the KA+.

Ford expects SUV sales in Europe to surge 30% in 2016. In fact, it anticipates sales of SUVs to be more than 200,000 units for the first time.

The company also expects record sales of performance cars in Europe this year. Sales are expected to improve 50% over 2015 to around 40,000 cars.

Zacks Rank

Ford currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked automobile stocks include Lear Corp. LEA, Superior Industries International, Inc. SUP and Oshkosh Corporation OSK. All the three stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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FORD MOTOR CO (F): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
SUPERIOR INDS (SUP): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
LEAR CORPORATN (LEA): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
OSHKOSH CORP (OSK): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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