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Automakers saw sales of full-size pickups soar 24.7 percent in the last year, thanks to recent increased demand from those in the construction and energy sectors, reports the Detroit News.
In all, automakers sold 1,444,626 cars and trucks here in the U.S. last month. For comparison, car and SUV sales were only up 5.7 percent compared to last year.
Ford was the biggest winner, seeing sales of its F-Series trucks skyrocket 30.6 percent in the last year. In May Ford sold more than 70,000 trucks—the first time that’s happened since the housing bubble burst.
Ford told the Detroit News it credits the resurgence of home construction for the uptick in sales in addition to huge demand from the energy sector as the fracking rush continues. In fact, Ford’s VP of marketing Ken Czubay called the demand for trucks the company is seeing in Houston, near the Eagle Ford and Haynesville shale deposits, “a phenomenon,” adding, “It’s been a standout region.”
What’s interesting is that the demand automakers are seeing from the energy sector is not strictly for work. IHS Automotive analyst George Magliano told the Detroit News that the workers on these fracking sites have a bit of disposable income now and are spending, and will likely continue to spend, it on cars and trucks.
General Motors says it too has seen growing energy sector demand in Texas as well as in North Dakota. GM’s full-size pickup sales are up 24.3 percent compared to a year ago. Chrysler enjoyed big annual gains in pickups as well with Ram Truck sales up 21.6 percent.