At least one retail sales drought ends

Neil PascaleDid you hear that roar coming from Cupertino, Calif., earlier this week? That’s the headquarters of Ducati North America, where it’s likely officials did more just a little celebrating after hearing three words that had not been uttered there in 13 long, long months: A sales increase.

That’s right: Ducati actually saw an increase in U.S. new unit retail sales for October over the prior-year month for the first time in more than a year. The good news did come with a bit of an asterisk as it came against an easier comparable — October of 2008 was the beginning of this wicked stretch of retail sales. But heh, a more than 10 percent gain in 2009 over a prior-year month is cause for considerable celebration, whatever the criteria.

Ducati North America CEO Michael Lock said the OEM was running some aggressive promotions to hit that increase, “probably more aggressive than we were October of last year.” But, as Lock said, what OEM isn’t doing that now?

More importantly, it’s a sign the consumer is starting to re-engage. And what could be a better cause for celebration than that?

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