Reuters reports that pickup trucks comprised approximately 11% of the U.S. automotive market last year; traditionally, the product has occupied an average of 17%.
However, the uptick in the housing market could prove beneficial for pickup truck sales. Ellen Hughes-Cromwick, an economist with Ford Motor Co., notes that U.S. Census Bureau data showing a rise in people setting up new households could translate into new pickup truck sales.
‘This is a fundamental physical foundation for housing recovery,’ says Hughes-Cromwick. ‘When you look at the housing recovery, it can put a twinkle in your eye every bit as much as 2013 sales forecasts do.’
Jim Davlin, treasurer with General Motors, concurs. ‘There's a big correlation between auto sales and housing starts,’ he says. ‘The pickup truck market share is at historical lows. We would expect that to come back.’
However, housing alone will not help invigorate pickup truck sales. Itay Michaeli, a Citi analyst, predicts that pent-up demand and new models, coupled with stabilizing gas prices, will also help move pickup trucks.
‘The pickup truck sector is poised to outperform the rest of the market this year,’ Michaeli says.
Photo courtesy of Second Chance Garage.