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Automakers Report Mixed Sales Totals To Open 2016

Top U.S. automakers followed up a record 2015 with mixed sales numbers in the first month of the new year.

Top U.S. automakers followed up a record 2015 with mixed sales numbers in the first month of the new year.

Fiat Chrysler reported its best January in nine years after sales jumped 7 percent compared to January of 2015.

FCA's Jeep brand increased by 15 percent for its best January in history, while Ram Truck grew by 5 percent and Dodge climbed by 19 percent. Chrysler sales, however, declined by 22 percent.

The sales totals mark the 70th consecutive monthly increase for FCA, but the automaker faces a lawsuit from two dealerships over alleged attempts to manipulate those totals.

General Motors sales, meanwhile, climbed by 0.5 percent last month while Ford sales declined by 2.6 percent.

Sales of GM's Buick brand skyrocketed by more than 45 percent compared to the previous January, while GMC climbed by 3.5 percent. Chevrolet sales fell by 3.6 percent and Cadillac declined by 8 percent.

Ford brand sales fell by 3 percent, but its Lincoln line saw 8.4 percent sales growth.

Automakers noted that January 2015 included two fewer selling days and one less weekend than the previous January. Sales were also hampered by rough weather along both coasts.

Among overseas automakers, Toyota sales declined by 4.7 percent, including a 3.9 percent decrease among Toyota models and a 9.5 percent decline in Lexus sales.

Honda sales fell by 1.7 percent, largely due to a 14.5 percent drop in its Acura line. Honda division sales remained flat and its car sales increased by 8.7 percent.

Nissan saw a 2.9 percent sales increase among its models but a nearly 12 percent decline among Infiniti. The Nissan Group's overall sales climbed by 1.6 percent.

Those six companies comprised more than 75 percent of the U.S. auto market in December, according to numbers from The Wall Street Journal.

Volkswagen, meanwhile, continued to suffer in the U.S. in the wake of its diesel emissions scandal. VW sales were down nearly 15 percent compared to the first month of 2015.

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