The Best-Selling Vehicle for 3 Decades Continues to Roll

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The best-selling vehicle in America during 2015 claimed the same title in 2014 -- and the 32 years before then. Find out the identity of the big winner.

The best-selling car in the country over the past year — and for more than three decades running — is actually a truck.

The Ford F-Series was the best-selling vehicle of 2015, the 34th year it has claimed the honor, Ford announced upon releasing its December sales numbers.

Ford explains in a news release:

F-Series sales totaled 85,211 trucks in December, up 15 percent. Strong demand for F-150 contributed to the performance, as F-Series broke through the 85,000 vehicle mark for the first time in a decade.

For the year, F-Series sales totaled 780,354 trucks — making it America’s best-selling pickup for 39 consecutive years and best-selling vehicle for 34 straight years.

An analysis by Automobile magazine confirms that the Ford F-Series was the best-selling vehicle of 2015, by a margin of approximately 180,000 units — or about 30 percent more — over the No. 2 vehicle, the Chevrolet Silverado.

The magazine notes:

This past year was anything but ordinary for Ford’s perennial pickup.

An all-new model with a lightweight, fully-aluminum body went on sale, and despite a comprehensive retooling for the F-Series’ production facilities, it still came out on top. It even eked out a slight increase over 2014, though the sales numbers do include plenty of previous-generation F-150s that were sold during the model transition.

Pickup trucks also accounted for the No. 2 and No. 3 best-selling vehicles of the year in Automobile’s analysis: the Silverado and Ram Pickup, respectively.

Kelley Blue Book analyst Karl Bauer tells MarketWatch:

“All open-bed, light-duty pickups sell extremely well. If you do a search of best-selling vehicles from any time frame in the past 40 years you’ll see full-size trucks dominating the top 10 spots. So the F-150 has that going for it right off the bat.”

Kelley Blue Book also recognized the F-150 as the “best-buy” pickup truck for 2016. (See “And the ‘Best Buy’ Car of 2016 Is …“)

J.D. Power and Associates recognized it as the most gratifying large light-duty pickup to drive for 2015. (See “26 of the Most Gratifying Cars to Drive.”)

Are you surprised the Ford F-Series has been the best-selling vehicle in the U.S. for so long? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.

Stacy Johnson

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