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September car sales come in strong, but Ford lags rivals

October 3, 2011 |  9:39 am

Ford
Sales at Ford Motor Co. rose in September, but the automaker didn't do as well as its domestic rivals and several import brands.

Ford said its U.S. sales for the month totaled 175,199 vehicles, up 9% from September 2010.

Nissan North America said its September sales rose 25% to 92,964 vehicles compared with the same month a year earlier.

Meanwhile, sales soared 20% for GM and 27% for Chrysler in what is turning out to be a strong month for U.S. car sales. VW also had a good September.

"We have predicted that September and October would be strong months in terms of new-car sales. This year, the summer sell-down season started late, but consumers waited for it," said Jeremy Anwyl, chief executive of auto information company Edmunds.com.

He said consumers began to see anticipated sales deals kick in last month.

"We anticipate that the delayed summer sell-down season will continue into at least the early part of October," Anwyl said.

Ford was hurt by its lagging Lincoln luxury division, where sales fell by 7%.  The results were better at the company's core Ford nameplate, whose sales rose 14%.

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-- Jerry Hirsch

twitter.com/LATimesJerry

Photo: A Ford Expedition assembly line in Wayne, Mich. Credit: Associated Press

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