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AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY NEWS
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O.C. automakers see sales climb in February

All five locally based brands saw upticks last month over the same time in 2010.

By Kristen SchottPublished: March 01, 2011 01:36 PM

Auto sales continue to show signs of improvement this year, with all five Orange County-based brands reporting gains in February over the same month in 2010.

Fountain Valley-based Hyundai remained the top seller among local automakers; 43,533 cars were purchased last month, up 28 percent from February 2010. However, Cypress-based Mitsubishi saw a 71.5 percent spike in numbers – it's the largest gain reported by the O.C. brands. The automaker sold 6,893 cars in February.

Irvine-based Kia and Mazda, and Brea-based Suzuki also saw year-over-year increases last month.

Mazda North American Operations President and CEO Jim O'Sullivan said the company is "pleased" with its February results.

"While our year-over-year sales increase is good (up 13.7 percent), it only tells half the story; we're selling cars the right way," he said. "Compared to the industry, our incentive spend continues to be very low, and our retail versus fleet mix is very strong. At Mazda, we do not chase volume, but rather, long-term brand strength and profitability."

Here's a look at the local numbers:

Fountain Valley-based Hyundai Motor America
February sales: 43,533
February 2010 sales: 34,004
Increase: 28 percent
Year-to-date 2011: 80,747
Year-to-date 2010: 64,507
Increase: 25 percent

Irvine-based Kia Motors America
February sales: 32,806
February 2010 sales: 24,052
Increase: 36.4 percent
Year-to-date 2011: 60,595
Year-to-date 2010: 46,174
Increase: 31.2 percent

Irvine-based Mazda North American Operations
February sales: 19,387
February 2010 sales: 17,054
Increase: 13.7 percent
Year-to-date 2011: 33,654
Year-to-date 2010: 32,748
Increase: 2.8 percent

Cypress-based Mitsubishi Motors North America
February sales: 6,893
February 2010 sales: 4,019
Increase: 71.5 percent
Year-to-date 2011: 12,607
Year-to-date 2010: 8,189
Increase: 54 percent

Brea-based American Suzuki Motor Corp.
February sales: 1,643
February 2010 sales: 1,375
Increase: 19 percent
Year-to-date 2011: 4,205
Year-to-date 2010: 3,415
Increase: 23 percent

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