Detroit rakes in Q3 profits

General Motors, Ford, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) bring in massive profits after lean months in Q2.

$4 billion

GM Q3 earnings, up from $800 million loss in Q2

“This year, and the third quarter, is a testament to GM’s resilience. We entered the pandemic in a strong position and acted decisively to keep our teams safe, conserve cash and preserve liquidity, all while keeping our critical product programs on track. Now we are well positioned to meet rising customer demand, accelerate our transformation and deliver our vision of a world with zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion.”

— GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra

$2.4 billion

Ford Q3 earnings, up from $1.1 billion gain in Q2

“We know that there’s huge value to be unlocked as we turn around our automotive operations. There will be additional opportunity when we start growing again, which we will do with products and services customers can’t resist.”

— Ford President and CEO Jim Farley

$1.4 billion

FCA Q3 earnings, up from $1.2 billion loss in Q2

"Our record results were driven by our team's tremendous performance in North America. During the quarter, we unveiled white-space products across many brands; launched the next chapter for our storied Maserati brand; confirmed our market

leadership in Latin America; and continued the rapid pace of our global investments in electrification."

— FCA Group CEO Mike Manley

Sales recover in Q3

At the start of the pandemic, National Automobile Dealers Association Chief Economist Patrick Manzi lowered his full-year outlook for 2020 to as low as 13 million vehicles, 22% lower than he’d predicted at the end of 2019. However, in September, sales hit a 16.3 million annualized selling rate, showing a much faster sales recovery than analysts had expected.

“Given the better than expected recovery in the new light-vehicle market, we estimate 2020 new light-vehicle sales to be higher, reaching 14.1 million units,” Manzi adds. That’s still a 16% decline from end-of-2019 expectations, but it’s a vast improvement from the March-through-May doldrums of shuttered plants and empty dealerships.