Sales of big pickups fuels overall 20 percent increase

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Truck sales also are good for automakers’ profits, especially the Detroit Three. The companies make $5,000 or more on pickup sales, compared with $1,000 to $2,000 for an average car, Mr. Schuster said.

The strong sales in August can’t be attributed to deals. Discounts on the Ford F-150 and Dodge Ram pickups fell compared with last year, while they rose only 5 percent on Chevy’s Silverado, to $4,787. The F-150 incentives are the lowest since 2007, when Ford offered an average of $3,598 per truck, according to the Edmunds.com website.

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