The big sales news for March, beyond the fact that Ford and Ram killed it, is that GM pickup trucks did not do well. While GM has kept incentive spending down, has a reasonably low days' supply of pickups on dealer lots and runs efficient production plants, its market share is in the red when compared with 2016 sales. And that's for full- and mid-size pickups. This is the first time since GM began producing the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon mid-sizers that it hasn't outsold Ford. And Ford is doing that with just two pickup lineups — the F-150 and Super Duty — to GM's six, the Chevy and GMC mid-sizers, half tons and heavy duties.
The other interesting thing about March sales is that Ram outsold Chevrolet in the full-size pickup segment, meaning that Ram could potentially overtake the Silverado with just a few more months like this one. That would be a big shift in the pickup truck universe.
In other March sales news, Nissan continued to gain traction with the new Titans. We're told that about half of the total Titan sales are the Titan XD with the Cummins engine, which is not the kind of gain Nissan needs for its heart-of-the-market half-ton Titan. Nissan knew this strategy would be a long road, but it will need to get better traction against the main half-ton competition.
Mid-size pickups remained stable with the Toyota Tacoma in the lead but down a few percentage points for the year and a few more for the month. We understand that about half of the Tacomas are sold with one of the three TRD trim packages — the TRD Off-Road, TRD Sport and TRD Pro — so no doubt the summer months will play better for Toyota as its buyers look to explore the great outdoors.
Cars.com graphics by Paul Dolan; manufacturer images