Puerto Rico Economic Pulse ©

October 2010: Are Car Sales Going Green?

Recent performance of car sales and implications for PR

A global-scale recession started during the second half of 2008 and it hit the economy of the US. The recession in Puerto Rico started two years earlier and has not ended. It has impacted car sales; both in the mainland as well as in PR. President Barack Obama extended the financial bailout to once powerful US carmakers, such as, Chrysler and General Motors. Chrysler, managed by Fiat, is making progress and GM is profitable again. However, we understand this automotive industry crisis, which has affected manufacturers, workers, car dealers, and badly needed fiscal revenues, is not yet over. So far, economic recovery in the US translates into improving yet not spectacular car sales. PR has posted better car sales this year than in 2009 but they are still below 2006. With new technology and awareness of climate changes, will green plans drive car sales in the future? This issue analyzes how hybrid cars could shape the future.