Penske reports 26% gain in Q2 profits on higher retail sales

Penske Automotive Group reported a 26 percent increase in net income for the second quarter driven by strong retail vehicle sales — particularly at Toyota and Honda dealerships.

The retail group's second quarter net income was $49.1 million compared to $39.6 million a year earlier, the company said in a statement today.

Total revenue increased by 19.2 percent to $3.4 billion. It was driven by a 21 percent increase in total retail unit sales. The increase in retail vehicle sales was highlighted by a 25 percent boost in new vehicle sales and a 16 percent increase in used vehicle sales. Total same-store retail sales increased 12 percent in the second quarter.

"The company's second quarter results reflect strong performance across both the United States and International markets," Penske Chairman Roger Penske said in a statement. "We experienced strong unit sales throughout the quarter, particularly through our Toyota, Honda and Lexus dealerships, and we increased our service and parts gross margin by 130 basis points to 59 percent."

Same-store retail revenue increased 9 percent in the second quarter. Gross profit improved

13 percent to $513.4 million and operating income increased 30 percent to $90.3 million, Penske said.

During the quarter, average gross profit per vehicle slipped 6.6 percent to $2,969 for new vehicles and fell 10.6 percent to $1,972 on used.

Penske, based in suburban Detroit, ranks No. 2 on the Automotive News list of the top 125 dealership groups in the United States with 154,829 in new-vehicle sales in 2011.

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