The first three months of 2022 are officially in the books. With many automakers reporting sales on a quarterly level, this means we can take a look at the numbers for comparisons in various segments. Pony cars account for a very small portion of overall sales, but it's a very visible segment and as such, US automakers love claiming bragging rights. For the first quarter of the year, the honor goes to the Blue Oval.
The Ford Mustang bested the Dodge Challenger and Chevrolet Camaro in sales through the first three months of 2022. 13,986 models found homes, which is a 19 percent drop from the previous year. The victory is a slim one, however, as Dodge sold 11,124 Challengers for the same period. It's a 26 percent year-over-year drop, which certainly isn't a good sign for the aging muscle machine considering it ended 2021 up by 3 percent.
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As for the Camaro, sales only fell 5.3 percent but in this case, it means really low numbers are even lower. Chevrolet sold just 6,710 Camaros for the period, less than half the Mustang's sales. There were actually more Corvettes sold through the first three months, 8,811 to be exact. Whether 2022 will be the last year for Chevy's war pony remains to be seen, but the sales stats certainly don't look good.
Gallery: 2022 Ford Mustang Coastal Limited Edition
We know the Mustang will live for another generation, and it will offer V8 power. Spy photos have captured seventh-generation Mustang prototypes out and about, with a spy video clearly capturing the burble of a V8. We think a manual transmission will still be offered, but that's a variable in the equation at this time. It's possible a hybrid Mustang could arrive for the next-gen model, but a fully electric version may skip this generation.
As for the Challenger, all Hellcat models will be dropped after 2023, and we know a new all-electric muscle car is slated for 2024. Whether it's a next-gen Challenger is unknown; we've also heard rumors that the new twin-turbocharged inline-six engine could find its way to Dodge's muscle car. Any way you slice it, the next couple of years will see major changes in the pony car lineup not just at Dodge, but all US brands.
Until then, it's clear that automakers are still struggling with a plethora of problems affecting production. COVID cases are way down but still an occasional factor. The ongoing semiconductor shortage shows no sign of letting up. And Russia's invasion of Ukraine has injected instability into the global community that's having a ripple effect on everything from auto parts to fuel component costs.