Auto Market Moves In Mysterious Ways

Toyota is approaching a net profit of $16.95 billion — its best since 2008 — largely on the strength US sales of recently retooled Camry, Avalon and Corolla models. While continuing its dominance of the hybrid market, with four Prius models, a plug-in electric and other hybrid models, the announcement of an aggressive hydrogen fuel cell program represents a major departure from the hybrid and electric path.

Even the slowing growth this year of Hyundai and Kia, amid capacity issues, does not lessen the accomplishment of the South Korean brands becoming the combined fifth largest carmaker in the world. While Hyundai has been retrenching after frenetic growth since 2007, Kia continues to be very competitive with recent revisions of the Soul urban hatchback and the smart and stylish Sorento compact SUV.

Mercedes-Benz has scored a major hit with the new CLA sedan, spacious and impeccably finished for as little as $33,500. In fact high, demand in the US has strained the supply of the classy new model. And BMW turned heads and bolstered sales by making a new generation 4 Series from the earlier 3 Series coupe.

This George Polgar of GT Marketing for KYW News Radio.