February 16, 2010 08:58 ET Releases February TrueTrends™ Report

New Report Tracks Toyota Recall's Effect on the Industry; Identifies 2010 PT Cruiser as Most Flexible

SANTA MONICA, CA--(Marketwire - February 16, 2010) - As Toyota begins its Herculean task of coming back from the massive recall that crippled both sales and its sterling reputation, TrueCar ( continues to offer new car buyers a transparent look at how the recall affected the rest of the industry. That event -- as well as all of the month's significant automotive industry and new car sales trends -- is outlined in the TrueCar February TrueTrends™ Report, released today.

The monthly report includes TrueCar's unique Price Flex Score, identifying new cars with the most negotiating room, as well as best deals by Total Incentives, Greatest Percentage below MSRP, Greatest Price Drops and Days in Inventory.

The February TrueTrends Report includes the following highlights:

-- offers a complete snapshot of how the Toyota Recall has changed the Auto Industry, including a thorough look at two of the most affected models in the Toyota line-up -- the Camry and the Corolla. The report, derived from the Toyota Recall page, is an analysis of how prices and web traffic was impacted by Toyota.

-- Additionally, almost every category is flavored by the Toyota Recall, whether it is larger than average discounts, or models appearing on this report for the first time.

-- The Flex Score -- a measure of how much negotiation room, high or low, there is in a vehicle -- for a 2010 PT Cruiser is 100, making it the most flexible vehicle for the second month in a row and offers the first perfect score on a non-luxury brand since the TrueTrends Report began tracking flexibility.

-- The best day of the month to buy a car -- based on analysis of historical data and short term forecasts -- will be Saturday, February 27th. Discounts are projected to reach as high as 6.52%, the only day of the 30 day period (February 16th to March 18th) expected to be higher than 6.5%. The projected lowest discount day is March 12th, with a possible discount at 5.45%.

-- Ford is clearly taking advantage of a great January (Car of the Year awards, great sales, positive outlook) by offering the most projected discounts (an average of 13% for all models) and two models with the highest price drop month over month (Mustang and F-150).

"February has long been a cold month in the auto industry, but with what has happened to Toyota, competition will heat up fast," said Jesse Toprak, VP of Industry, Trends and Insights for "The outcome of Toyota recalls will be better deals for consumers in virtually all vehicle segments as the other automakers will try to maximize their market share gains through more generous incentives."

TrueCar Price Flex Score and the Greatest Discounts

TrueCar uses several methods to identify the best new car deals of the month. Not only does TrueCar track vehicles with the greatest discounts, but the TrueCar Price Flex Score measures how elastic the transaction price is for a particular model. For example, if you are planning to buy a vehicle with a low Price Flex Score, don't expect much of a discount from the TrueCar average price. If a vehicle has a high Price Flex Score, however, you have the potential to strike a deal significantly below (or above, if you are not careful!) the TrueCar average price. The report alerts consumers to the lowest and highest Price Flex Scores, providing an additional layer of information beyond just the average prices so consumers can get the best deals possible.

2009 Most Flexible Vehicles             2010 Most Flexible Vehicles

Make        Model       Score           Make        Model       Score
Honda       Ridgeline     100           Chrysler    PT Cruiser    100
Mazda       MX-5 Miata     94           Honda       Ridgeline      91
Honda       Civic          89           Nissan      Titan          89
Jeep        Grand Cherokee 89           Mazda       MX-5 Miata     88
Mitsubishi  Eclipse        87           Mitsubishi  Eclipse        87

Top 2009 Greatest Discounted Models     Top 2010 Greatest Discounted Models

Rank   Make Model      % Below MSRP     Rank   Make Model      % Below MSRP

1      Nissan Titan             26%     1      Ford Ranger              17%
2      Chevrolet Cobalt         22%     2      Hyundai Sonata           17%
3      Kia Sorrento             20%     3      Jeep Grand Cherokee      17%
4      Dodge Ram 1500           19%     4      Jeep Commander           16%
5      HUMMER H3                19%     5      Chevrolet Cobalt         16%

The TrueCar's Price Report is based on the idea that price goes far beyond averages. To see the full picture, you need to know the context, which TrueCar offers by presenting the price buyers actually pay for vehicles. The report is based on data for more than 43% of all individual US retail transactions per month from dozens of proprietary and third party sources offering TrueCar Price Reports on more than 84% of all new cars at the local level, as well as information on dealer and consumer incentive trends.

About TrueCar

TrueCar ( is the authority in new car prices. TrueCar analyzes data from thousands of sources to show car buyers and car dealers how much people actually paid for a particular car in a specific local area. The innovative new car pricing service is offered online, free of charge at With TrueCar pricing, both new car buyers and new car dealers can know at any time what is considered a good or great price on a new car. Consumers no longer need to walk into a dealership partially informed and fully suspicious -- using TrueCar they walk in knowing the price of a fair deal. Dealers benefit by TrueCar's real-time, unbiased information about marketplace pricing, helping them price cars for increased sales, and ultimately gaining market share over other dealers. Led by a highly experienced team from the automotive and technology industries, TrueCar is based in Santa Monica, California.

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