While electric vehicles are rapidly taking over the roads (and imaginations) of Miami and other major U.S. cities, car buyers in 2021 remained loyal to the internal combustion engine (however in terms of growth year-over-year, the Tesla Model Y experienced a jump of 121%). The vehicle with the highest YOY unit sales was, no real surprise — the Ford F-150. The usual suspects followed, RAM, Silverado, SUVs and passenger cars from Toyota, Honda and Nissan, with the Jeep Grand Cherokee squeaking into the top 10. There were winners and losers for 2021, with Ford and Chevy taking the biggest hits, while RAM managed to grow at a modest 1% increase in unit sales.
The most popular vehicles in America are still the most popular — but some sold fewer of them — and some were up for the year. The demand for new cars and trucks remains strong, and with some signs that the semiconductor shortage may ease in the coming year, automakers will ready to deliver inventory. But at the end of the day, the models with vehicles on the showroom floor, achieved better results. (Top 50 list below)
The Models That Took The Biggest Losses
It was a tough year for the lead dogs. Ford’s F-150 and Chevy’s Silverado suffered unit sales losses YOY. Here’s how the top sellers stacked up…
Ford F-150 Ford sold 787,372 F-150 pickups in 2020. That number slipped to 726,003 for 2021 (61,369 fewer pickups), down 7.8%.
Chevrolet Silverado They were joined in the loss column by the Chevy Silverado, down 10.7% YOY, selling 63,282 fewer vehicles.
Toyota RAV4 Toyota’s RAV4 was down from 430,387 in 2020 to 407,739 in 2021, a 22% dip YOY.
The Models That Beat 2020 Numbers: Success In An Eventful Year…
Congratulations to the automakers who made it through with these models, posting sales increases YOY 2020 vs 2021.
Ram Pickup How’d they do it? The current fifth-generation Ram pickup became the first truck in history to three-peat the award, winning in 2019, 2020, and 2021. The big, brutish RAM has brushed past the Silverado in unit sales lately, but may never catch the F-150.
Honda CR-V How’d they do it? Known for reliability. The CR-V is fuel-efficient, comfortable, and practical. The CR-V shares platforms with the Civic and fits comfortably in the Honda lineup, between the smaller HR-V and the larger Pilot. The CR-V is always on the top 10 list, packed with cool tech.
Toyota Camry How’d they do it? The Toyota’s popular family sedan is known for excellent reliability and strong resale value. Loaded with technology and packed with a variety of powerful engines, the Camry is stylish and practical.
Nissan Rogue How’d they do it? Practicality and value are the Rogue’s strong points, with a spacious cabin, generous cargo room, and a host of standard and optional niceties that SUV buyers crave, including several high-tech infotainment and driver-assistance items.
Toyota Highlander How’d they do it? Of the pack, the Highlander has more cargo space, more safety features, and more power. Three rows of comfortable seating, spacious interior — a popular midsize SUV for carting the family around.
Honda Civic How’d they do it? Seems like everyone’s first real car — was a Honda Civic. Loved for its simple and sporty design, class-leading safety performance, excellent driving dynamics and fun-to-drive personality, Civic won the 2022 North American Car of the Year for third time—previously taking top honors in 2006 & 2016; no car has won the award more times than Civic
Jeep Grand Cherokee How’d they do it? An upscale interior, super-comfortable seats, streamlined infotainment system, and ample space in both rows. The Grand Cherokee’s standard V6 engine has more than enough power for every day — with a trio of brutish V8 engines available for the true Jeep ninja.
Here’s the breakdown of the top 50 models (in terms of unit sales) and YOY results, 2020 vs 2021