A U.S. government investigation into charges that FCA USA inflated sales data pushed the automaker to alter its system for reporting its sales on both sides of the border.
But as a review of the last previous five full years of sales reporting reveals, the differences show FCA both over and under reported volume totals depending on the month and year.
The automaker explains the New Vehicle Delivery Report (NVDR) system captures the time of a retail sale for two purposes: to begin the retail customer’s warranty coverage and triggers the automaker’s to make incentive payments to the dealer.
Vehicle unit sales data reported is made up of three main components: sales made by dealers to retail customers; sales to fleet customers and other retail sales including vehicles delivered to FCA employees and retirees and vehicles used for marketing.
FCA insists that the process of reporting monthly sales stats has no impact on the revenue reported in its financial statements.
August sales calculated under the NVDR totaled 21,627 versus nearly 27,000 units in August 2015. That’s a 20 per cent drop.
YTD sales totaled 153,397 (retail and fleet) versus 152,439 YTD 2015 under the old system.
With the new reporting method, total annual sales would have been higher in 2011, 2013 and 2016 and lower in 2012, 2014 and 2015.
In a detailed release from FCA this week that showed the old and new totals, the differences ran the gamut. October 2015 sales, for example, were originally under reported by 41 vehicles; June 2011 sales, however, were misreported by 2,171 units.