DETROIT ( TheStreet) - September was a good month for the auto industry, as sales rose 10%. In fact, it sometimes seems as if the auto industry
got a pass on the so-called double dip . Given the new job commitments in recent union contracts and tentative agreements with Ford ( F), GM ( GM) and Chrysler, it seems as if the industry is committed to single-handedly keeping the economy from dipping back into recession.
The current state of the auto industry recalls the adage that economists have predicted eight of the past three recessions. Despite the industry's strength, though, some well-known vehicles did not have a good month, but rather saw sales decline from September of 2010. In some cases, it is necessary to look past the numbers. In an extreme case, involving the Toyota Camry, this fabulously popular automobile remained the no. 1 selling car in the country despite a double-digit sales decline. In another, sales of the Ford Focus dropped 24.1% to 10,309 units. But Ken Czubay, vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service at Ford, said the decline was an aberration. "What we saw in September (was that) we were restocking with the new model and having a sell-down of the prior model. As we diminished inventory of the old model, we couldn't restock fast enough. "We expect a terrific Focus month throughout the country in October," Czubay said. The Focus didn't make our list, however, because the Taurus showed an even bigger decline. Here are September's five not-so-hot sellers, selected not necessarily for the largest percentage decline but rather for largest declines by vehicles that nevertheless managed to rack up meaningful sales numbers that were indicative of trends at their manufacturers.