) -- Ford said its July sales rose 17% and retail sales rose 21%, thanks to the recovering economy as well as the Cash for Clunkers program.
Winners at Ford included the Fusion, with sales up 132%; the Mercury Milan, up 112% and the Ford Flex, up 107%.
On the downside, no Lincoln model showed a year-over-year increase. The best-performing Lincoln was the MKX, down 20%, and the Lincoln brand was down 38%.
Among the top 10 vehicles sold under the Cash for Clunkers, the only two produced by U.S. manufacturers were the Ford Focus and the Ford Escape. Focus sales were up 56% to 25,547. Escape sales rose 49% to 20,933. Fusion sales totaled 21,010 and Milan sales totaled 3,844.
Ford said sales of pickup trucks and the new Transit Connect van also rose, an indication of economic recovery. Sales of the Ford F-Series, the country's bestselling truck, rose 13% to 45,590.
"We're very pleased with the balanced performance of our products -- from Focus to F-Series," said Ken Czubay, vice president for sales and marketing, in a prepared statement. "We are hopeful that the sales of our pickups and all-new Transit Connect are an indication that small business owners are seeing signs of recovery and gaining confidence in the outlook for stronger business conditions."
Total Ford sales for the month, including fleet deliveries, were 176,323.
-- Written by Ted Reed in Charlotte, N.C.