Pickups are a uniquely American institution. Sure, you've got your Toyota Hilux, and (sadly) the T6 Ford Ranger roaming the streets of Asia, the Middle East, Australia and Africa, but nowhere else will you find such a strong following and loyalty to trucks. The March 2012 sales figures reflect this enduring trend. We've rounded up the top-sellers for the month.
1. Ford F-Series - 58,061, Up 9.0 Percent
Ford doesn't break out the individual sales results for the F-150 and Super Duty lines, so we'll have to guess at the specific breakdown. But we do know that Ford has held this title almost uninterrupted for the better part of three decades, so it's no surprise here. The EcoBoost continues to be popular in the F-150, accounting for 41 percent of retail sales, and V-6 models overall accounting for 56 percent of F-150 sales.
2. Chevrolet Silverado - 36,491, Up 12.1 Percent
Some would argue it's only fair to compare to combined sales of the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC to the F-Series but, even if we did that, it still wouldn't topple the Blue Oval from the sales throne. The bowtie brand posted 36,491 sales of the Silverado for March, up a respectable 12.1 percent over March 2011.
3. Ram 1500, 2500, 3500 - 26,960, Up 23 Percent
Chrysler's overall good fortunes continue with a strong showing for the Ram pickup line, with 26,960 units sold in March, up a solid 23 percent from last year. From what we've seen of the dramatic improvements in store for the 2013 Ram 1500, we expect sales gains for the brand to continue.
4. GMC Sierra - 13,849, Up 19.2 Percent
Although well below the totals for Chevy, Ford and Ram, GMC sold a respectable 13,849 Sierra models for March, up 19.2 percent year-over-year. Year-to-date sales of the Sierra are also up 11.8 percent overall.
5. Toyota Tacoma - 12,547, Up 23.7 Percent
The Toyota Tacoma is the undisputed sales king of the midsize segment. If that sounds like being the king of Lichtenstein, don't laugh too hard, since the Taco out-sold the Nissan Frontier, Chevy Colorado, GMC Canyon, and Suzuki Equator combined. If you totaled sales of the Colorado, Canyon, Frontier, Equator and Ford Ranger, it would still only top combined Taco sales by just 2694 units.
6. Toyota Tundra - 8594, Up 14.4 Percent
The Japanese brands have never been able to penetrate the full-size market to the same extent they have with smaller trucks, and remain a niche player in the segment. But between the Tundra and Titan, Toyota's entry is the better-seller by a long shot.
7. Nissan Frontier - 6087, Up 32.1 Percent
The Nissan Frontier is a credible contender in the midsize segment, with strong available V-6 power, multiple configurations, and a sporty driving character. Though only selling half as well as the Tacoma in overall sales, percentage-wise, it was one of the biggest gainers of the group for the month, with a whopping 32.1-percent monthly increase.
8. Ford Ranger - 4404, Down 24.5 Percent
Although essentially living out its remaining days in the U.S. market, the Ford Ranger still managed to sell 4404 units for March. Although that's down 24.5 percent from last year, it still outsold its cross-town rival. As you can see from the percentages, however, Chevy was on the upswing, month-to-month.
9. Chevrolet Colorado - 3652, Up 42.6 Percent
The Chevrolet Colorado has never dominated the midsize market, despite the addition of a V-8 option for the 2009 model year. Some blame the dated four-speed automatic and five-speed manual transmission options when most of the competition has gone to five-speed automatics. But once again, viewed from a percentage standpoint, the Colorado was a big winner for March 2012, up a whopping 42.6 percent.
10. Nissan Titan - 1731, Down 9.8 Percent
The Nissan Titan was a bold new entry in the full-size market in 2004, but nearing a decade with minimal changes, consumers have largely lost interest. We hear an all-new model is just around the corner, and it can't come a moment too soon. The Titan moved a modest 1731 units for March.
11. GMC Canyon - 941, Up 23 Percent
The GMC Canyon remains a niche player in the midsize market, moving under a third of the units of its bowtie brother. Despite the modest three-figure sales, sales were up a solid 23 percent for the month.
12. Suzuki Equator - 157, Down 19 Percent
The Suzuki Equator barley moved the sales needle in March, despite being a near-clone of the Nissan Frontier, with a better warranty to boot. It's somewhat of a hidden gem of the midsize market. Just 157 were sold in March, down a disappointing 19 percent.