For the auto industry, the year 2009 brought two high-profile bankruptcies, billions of dollars in government bailouts and funding for Cash for Clunkers, and thousands of lost jobs. Several historic brands were relegated to the archives.

As the books close on 2009, it will be remembered as a rough ride for almost everybody – but not all. The Hyundai Group emerged from the chaos as a new major player. Ford Motor Co., though not without its own troubles, shouldered past its Detroit rivals in the war for the hearts, minds and wallets of the American car-buying public. And, the industry accepted new fuel-economy regulations.

The industry lost tons of volume. Four automakers lost tons of market share, “tons” definable as double-digit losses: Chrysler Group LLC (0in7 percent); General Motors Co. (-10.6 percent); Mitsubishi Motor Corp. (-29.7 percent) and Suzuki Motor Corp. (-40.5 percent).

Where There are Losers, There are Winners
The can’t-do-much-wrong Hyundai Group (Hyundai and Kia brands combined) piled on a heavy 40.4 percent of share, from 2008’s 5.2-percent of the market to 7.3-percent share this year. Suddenly mighty Subaru sent out a smack-down message to even the industry’s heavyweight makers, steamrolling its way to a 2.1-percent share of the market, a near-50-percent gain over 2008. Other notable market-share gainers include VW’s Audi of America (+20.8 percent); Mercedes-Benz gained 10 percent and Ford posted a 6.1-percent gain. The domestic automakers collectively lost 7.3 percent of market share in 2009, compared with a 41.8-percent gain for South Korean makers, a 1.8 percent gain for Japanese makers and a 7.7-percent gain for European automakers.

Little Change in Bestseller List
Despite major upheaval in the market, the bestseller list anticipated by for 2009 is little changed from 2009. In fact, the top 10 bestsellers represented a near-identical share of total industry sellers. The Toyota Camry was the industry’s bestseller in 2009, after losing a close race with the Honda Accord in 2008 for the top spot. The Ford Fusion, on course to set record sales, made the top 10 list in the No. 10 spot.

Big Change for DriveWise Auto
Though it wasn’t easy, and there were certainly challenges, for DriveWise Auto, 2009 was full of good news: Our year over year sales from 2008 to 2009 were up 28.5%, we developed several new business alliances and partnerships, grew our internal team, strealined some of our internal/external processes, and nearly doubled the number of dollars we donated in 2008.

**To read the full/actual article adapted from Edmunds, which includes detailed statistics, information about incentives and make/model/vehicle-type marketshare, follow this link: