DETROIT (AP) - Frigid temperatures and snowy weather generally kept buyers away from auto showrooms last month, with Ford, General Motors, Toyota and Volkswagen all reporting declines from a year ago.
But Chrysler, Nissan and Subaru dealers were smiling because sales ran counter to the thermometer and were up for all three brands.
GM said its sales dropped 12 percent compared with the same month a year earlier, while Ford and Toyota each were down 7 percent. Since they are the three top-selling automakers, sales overall are likely to be down for the month. Volkswagen also slumped, down 19 percent.
But Chrysler's U.S. sales advanced 8 percent, while Nissan's rose nearly 12 percent. And Subaru, with its entire lineup of all-wheel-drive vehicles, saw a 19 percent increase.
Chrysler notched its best January in six years. Sales were led by the Chrysler 200 midsize car and the Ram pickup. Both posted gains of more than 20 percent. Jeep brand sales rose 38 percent, fueled by sales of 10,505 new Cherokee small SUVs.