DETROIT ( TheStreet) -- The financial markets may be confused, but U.S. consumers knew exactly what they wanted when it came to buying new vehicles in September. They headed for the pickup trucks and SUVs.
This made winners out of the Detroit Three, because despite vast transformations -- both in and out of bankruptcy -- Ford ( F), GM ( F) and Chrysler -- remain pickup truck and SUV companies that also sell cars. Thus, of the top seven selling vehicles in the U.S. in September, four are pickup trucks and SUVs made by the Detroit Three, and three are small cars made by Japanese manufacturers. Trucks "are benefiting from historical patterns that favor higher pickup sales in the second half of the year," said Don Johnson, GM vice president of U.S. sales operations, on the automaker's September sales call. Additionally, GM advertises more in the fall, heavy baseball and football advertising, with much of the focus on pickup trucks. "This time of year people are starting to think about winter," Johnson said. "Commercial customers think about replacing trucks before things get too cold, and they start breaking down." Pickups accounted for nearly 13% of new light vehicle sales in September, up from 11% in July. Here are the five vehicles selected by TheStreet as September's five hottest vehicles, taking into account both sales gains and actual volume.