Northern Ohio auto sales rise sharply in September

Sales of new vehicles in Northern Ohio had a strong bounce-back in September after a weak August.

The Greater Cleveland Automobile Dealers’ Association reported that franchised new vehicle dealers in 21 counties sold 23,445 new vehicles in September, up about 7.6% from sales of 21,799 in the like month a year ago. It represented a rebound from August, when sales were down nearly 8% from August 2019.

For all of this pandemic-dominated year, sales, not surprisingly, are down. The association reports that dealers through September have sold 175,252 new vehicles, down about 7.5% from the January-to-September period of 2019.

Louis A. Vitantonio, the association’s president, said dealers in September “continue to show resilience, and consumers in Northern Ohio have stepped up once again to support the industry.” He said dealers continue to benefit from improving inventory levels and low interest rates.

Chevrolet sold a total of 3,545 new vehicles last month, putting it in first place among brands in Northern Ohio. Ford was second, with 2,953 sales, followed by Honda (2,099), Kia (1,719) and Jeep (1,692).

The used vehicle market, meanwhile, accelerated considerable in September and remains solid for the year.

The association reported that dealers sold a total of 19,406 used vehicles last month, up 11.3% from September 2019. Year over year, used vehicle sales are essentially flat, up by 0.4% to 166,967 from 2019 levels.

Retail sales figures are based on vehicle registration reports from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles in the following counties: Ashland, Ashtabula, Carroll, Columbiana, Coshocton, Cuyahoga, Erie, Geauga, Holmes, Huron, Lake, Lorain, Mahoning, Medina, Portage, Richland, Stark, Summit, Trumbull, Tuscarawas and Wayne.

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