America's consumers held back on buying new cars due to economic uncertainty last month, figures released by automakers this week have shown.


Car sales in the US rose by just one percent, according to calculations by Automotive News, as consumers held off buying in the face of high oil prices, the debt crises and low inventory caused by the Japanese earthquake.

General Motors, America's largest automaker, managed an eight percent gain in sales and rival Ford was up by six percent, figures showed.

Toyota, traditionally in third spot, saw its vehicles less popular than ever, with sales plunging by 23 percent, although it insists that it can recover in the coming months as production in Japan restarts.

In fourth place was Chrysler, which managed an outstanding sales gain of 20 percent on the back of new models, followed by Hyundai-Kia which was also up, by 17 percent.

Chrysler said that its Jeep Wrangler model set a monthly sales record, while the new Chrysler 200 rose 111 percent in July compared to its predecessor.

Honda, meanwhile, fell from fourth place last July to seventh this year on the back of a 28 percent drop in sales, which meant Hyundai-Kia and Nissan could leapfrog it.

The most popular automakers in the US - July 2011

1. General Motors
2. Ford
3. Toyota
4. Chrysler
5. Hyundai-Kia
6. Nissan
7. Honda

Data from automakers /  Automotive News

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