Seeing as we follow the monthly truck and SUV sales reports religiously around the first of the month, we're not shocked that 2012 was a good year for Jeep. But as we focus mainly on U.S. sales, we sometimes don't get the full picture; and with many brands that were once predominantly North American in nature now global, those brands are suddenly racking up mind-boggling sales gains overseas. Overall, 2012 global sales totaled 701,626 units, beating the previous record year of 1999 with 675,494 units sold. 2012 U.S. sales totaled 474,131 units.
Unsurprisingly, the two most popular Jeep nameplates at home and abroad were the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee. The somewhat surprising third-best-selling model was the compact Compass. The Wrangler enjoyed its best sales year ever both in the U.S. and globally with 194,142 units sold worldwide, and 141,669 domestically. The Grand Cherokee's 2012 U.S. total of 154,734 was its best since 2005. Sales were up 13 percent year over year in the U.S., up 29 percent in the battered European market, and an astounding 94 percent, with China in particular showing a 107 percent gain.
Although all these numbers are positive, at least on the domestic front, the gains are smaller than over the last few years. Jeep was up 44 percent domestically and 41 percent globally in 2011 over 2010. Year-over-year gains from 2009 to 2010 were 26 percent in the U.S. and 24 percent globally.