Nissan Motor Co.

2016 U.S. auto sales set a new record high, led by SUVs

2016 U.S. auto sales set a new record high, led by SUVs

U.S. consumers bought a record number of new cars and trucks in 2016. A repeat performance in 2017 could be a tall order.

Low gas prices, rising employment and low interest rates kept buyers coming to car dealerships last year. There was also the allure of new technology — such as backup cameras, automatic emergency braking and Apple CarPlay — and new vehicles such as the Chrysler Pacifica minivan, the Honda Civic and the all-electric Chevrolet Bolt.

U.S. vehicle sales totaled 17.55 million, beating 2015's record of 17.47 million, according to Autodata Corp. It was the seventh consecutive year of year-over-year sales gains, an unprecedented string, said Tom...

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