This month's sales results showed some changes from last month, with the only vehicles retaining their same relative sales spots for the month the reliably third-place Chevrolet Equinox and the Jeep Wrangler holding seventh. Nearly all other top 10 spots are changed from last month, showing how dynamic the SUV market can be.
Toward the bottom of the list, the Honda Pilot shows back up again, taking ninth place, bumping off the Toyota highlander, and also edging out (no pun intended) the Ford Edge, which took tenth for the month. The sometimes top 10 contender Kia Sorento was not even in the running this month, with sales of less than 9000 units for April.
1. Honda CR-V: 26,519, Up 12.2 Percent
The Honda CR-V re-takes the sales lead from the Escape for the first month in 2013, but by a slim margin of 693 units. The two models are still the undisputed titans of the SUV sales realm, and we're likely to see them continuing to trade places in the months ahead.
2. Ford Escape: 25,826, Up 52 Percent
The Escape held a consistent lead over the CR-V for the first three months of 2013, but Honda rallied in April and to pull ahead of Ford's compact by a narrow margin. Although probably slightly disappointing to Dearborn, falling short by less than 1000 units, as well as posting a 52-percent year-over-year monthly gain is cause for some celebration.
3. Chevrolet Equinox: 20,965, Up 14.7 Percent
Once again, the Equinox holds rock-steady in third place. It's still a ways off from threatening the Escape or CR-V, but Chevrolet is likely pleased with its 14.7 year-over-year April gain, as well as it having the distinction of being Chevrolet's best-selling SUV.
4. Toyota RAV4: 18,541, Up 22 Percent
Maybe the Kaley Cuoco ads are starting to get traction with the RAV4's target market. Toyota's compact SUV rose a spot from fifth to fourth this month thanks to a 22 percent year-over-year gain, indicating that the new design is resonating with compact SUV buyers.
5. Jeep Grand Cherokee: 15,003, Up 27 Percent
After conceding the midsize sales crown to the Explorer for several months, the Grand Cherokee is back on top. Now that dealers have a solid inventory of the 2014 model in stock, customers are responding to the updates on the model, which include an eight-speed automatic across-the-board, and improved fuel economy. A cursory search of dealer inventories show mostly Pentastar and Hemi models, but once the EcoDiesel starts arriving in significant numbers, expect the Grand Cherokee to enjoy a second sales boost.
6. Ford Explorer: 14,204, Up 5.8 Percent
The Grand Cherokee may have nudged the Explorer out of fifth place, but it's still a significant player in the midsize class that's out of reach of other competitors, volume-wise, foreign or domestic. The Explorer does have the advantage of being available with a third row, something the Grand Cherokee does not offer.
7. Jeep Wrangler: 13,445, Up 10 Percent
Depending if you're talking about the two-door or four-door Unlimited, the Wrangler could be considered a compact or midsize. Either way, it's one-of-a-kind. Even the roughly similar Nissan Xterra and Toyota FJ Cruiser don't even come close in terms of sales and popularity to the SUV originator.
8. Nissan Rogue: 11,904, Up 39 Percent
The Rogue may be no threat to the CR-V or even RAV4, but it is Nissan's best-selling SUV. Despite showing its age, and its fuel economy no longer leading the pack, the Rogue posted a solid gain.
9. Honda Pilot: 10,613, Up 20.2 Percent
Here's a name we haven't seen in a while. Not only did the Pilot surpass the Toyota Highlander for the month, it also out-sold the two-row Ford Edge by a handful of units.
10. Ford Edge: 10,357, Down 1.5 Percent
The Edge takes the 10th-place spot, holding a 564 unit lead over the Highlander for the month. Unfortunately, it also takes the dubious distinction of being the only model on our list that posted a decline for the month.