Honda's Civic and Accord were the biggest movers last month, jumping 76 and 83 percent, respectively, but – as usual – there's more than meets the eye on the list of the top 10 best-selling cars of November 2012.
Sales of the Civic were strong, a trend that has continued all year, but the compact sedan surged ahead of the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord that lead it on a year-to-date basis because Honda was busy clearing house ahead of the heavily revised 2013 Civic's arrival at the end of the month. Honda offered some hefty incentives, which no doubt swayed plenty of buyers into Civics instead of other compact cars.
But the same wasn't the case for the fourth place Accord, which saw sales increase a staggering 83 percent last month or the Toyota Corolla and Matrix, which were up 40 percent. Granted, sales of Honda and Toyota products were weak last year after production shortages caused by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, but the raw numbers don't lie.
On the truck side of things, the Ford F-Series had a commanding lead over the Chevrolet Silverado. Next month, Chevrolet will introduce the world to its redesigned Silverado and GMC Sierra and the refreshed Ram Pickup is just now arriving in showrooms, so this story could get a lot more interesting.
Only two crossovers popped into the top 10, even though November tends to be a strong month for vehicles that offer four-wheel-drive. The Honda CR-V is a common sight, but the oft-recalled Ford Escape (four recalls for its 1.6-liter engine since launching this summer) clearly isn't scaring away too many buyers.
It's worth noting that, Honda products aside, everything else on the top 10 list is popular with commercial, government and rental car fleet buyers. Hondas periodically show up in fleets, but the automaker stands apart from most of its rivals by not having a dedicated fleet department.
And if you're a fan of European imports, the Volkswagen Jetta was again the best seller from the continent (though it is built in Mexico). A surprising second place European model was the BMW 3-Series, which saw sales up 42 percent last month.
The 10 Best-Selling Cars of November 2012
1. Ford F-Series 56,299
2. Chevrolet Silverado 30,674
3. Honda Civic 30,075
4. Toyota Camry 28,765
5. Honda Accord 26,248
6. Ram Pickup 24,337
7. Toyota Corolla (includes Matrix) 22,616
8. Honda CR-V 22,333
9. Ford Escape 20,970
10. Nissan Altima 20,305