2014 Toyota Tundra Early Sales Terrible – What is the Problem?
It has been a full month since the 2014 Toyota Tundra was set to hit dealers and the numbers aren’t good. Is the truck market cooling, bad marketing, lack of incentives or is the truck just not as competitive as Toyota thought? What’s your take?
Toyota has released sales numbers for September 2013 and they sold just over 9,000 units. This was down 2.9 percent versus 2012 (9,071 – 2013 vs. 9,338 – 2012). Ford was up nearly 10 percent and Ram was up 8.4 percent. Now, GM was down as well, but we are hearing reports that GM is having supply issues getting their popular V-8 engine in the new trucks. What is going on?
For the record, year to date, the Tundra is still up 9.1 percent.
Why the Lackluster Sales?
Here is our theories:
- While yes the truck has been out for a month, we have heard some reports of dealers not having supply until early into the month. Also, consider there was 2 less “selling days” in September 2013 versus 2012 and that could have caused the drop.
- Marketing for the new truck just really got started a few weeks ago (mid to late September). While, fans of this site have known about the new truck, the general public hasn’t. It could be that the marketing was too late to help the September numbers.
- It could also be that Ram and Ford have been running lots of incentives to push their product. And actually, GM got killed a bit by this as well. GM plans to run more incentives according to an Autonews.com story. Wonder if Toyota will with their sales lagging?
- It could be the truck isn’t as appealing to current Tundra owners like Toyota thought. Most often when a new truck comes to the market, it energizes the fan base and creates “excitement” sales. However, this doesn’t seem to be what is happening. Reading this site, forums and talking with others, it can safely be concluded that the majority current owners aren’t interested in the new truck. Don’t misunderstand, there are current owners who have traded in, just not a lot to make a big sales difference. The reasons make sense. No new power train, minor exterior updates and a take-it or leave-it interior upgrade.
- Is the truck market cooling? Some has suggested that overall car sales have cooled in September and the numbers just represent that cooling. Maybe. Yet how do you explain the fact that Ford and Ram continued to sell well and have increases?
With a slow start to the new Tundra sales, we are wondering what impact all the strong pre-orders have had like Sweers said. If pre-orders were so strong, shouldn’t they be showing up on paper. They didn’t in August with nearly the same sales that month versus 2012 (11,365 – 2013 vs. 11,347 – 2012). And those “strong” pre-orders didn’t show up in September either.
Toyota has put up a goal of 120,000 units for the 2014 Tundra. This equates to around 10,000 a month. A spokesman told us that they anticipate reaching that goal by adding more market share and with a hot truck market. They are currently sliding backwards.
What is your take? Do these sales numbers reflect poor decisions on the new Tundra? Is it too early to tell? Is something else going on?
Filed Under: Tundra News