Automakers are thankful
DETROIT — Americans wanted to buy more than just video game consoles and big-screen TVs on Black Friday.
November auto sales rose 9 percent above a year ago, with a solid piece of the gains coming over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Sales ran at an annual pace of 16.4 million cars and trucks last month, the best in almost seven years.
The numbers gave evidence the small SUV is replacing the car as the vehicle of choice for families and baby boomers.
Erich Merkle, Ford's top sales analyst, said small SUVs gained two percentage points of market share in November compared with last year, while small and midsize cars lost two points combined.
Compact SUVs now make up 15.5 percent of U.S. sales. Through November, Americans bought about 1.8 million of them, a 21 percent rise from a year ago.