New vehicle sales in the United States are expected to increase 2.6% year on year to 1.47m units in July 2015, resulting in an estimated 17.1m seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), according to Kelley Blue Book.

"As the industry settles into the summer selling season, new car sales are expected to remain consistent with last month's numbers, representing modest and slowing growth versus last year," said senior analyst Alec Gutierrez.

"Sales in the first half of the year totaled 8.5m units, a year over year improvement of 4.4% and the highest first half volume since 2005. Total sales in 2015 are projected to hit 17.1m units overall, a 3.6% year over year increase and the highest industry total since 2001."

"FiatChrysler Automobiles should extend its sales gain streak to 64 consecutive months with expected growth of 4.4%, almost entirely on the momentum of the Jeep brand," added Gutierrez.

"Jeep has set monthly records for the past 20 months, and Jeep has grown nearly 40% of Fiat Chrysler's US sales numbers. With the Cherokee more popular than ever, and the increasing availability of the new Renegade, July should be another month of double digit growth for Jeep."

Nissan North America also is poised to gain market share in July 2015 with strong sales of its crossovers, including the Rogue and recently redesigned Murano. The Rogue has been well-received since its redesign in late 2013 and the new Murano is hitting the market at a time when mid size utility sales are growing more than 10%.

With a wave of new models hitting the market, compact SUVs once again will be the fastest-growing segment in the market.  Coinciding with the rising popularity of small utilities, mid-size car sales continue to weaken with July market share expected to fall more than half a percentage point.

Year to date, eight out of the top nine models in the segment have experienced sales drops apart from the Chrysler 200.

just-auto's analysis: SUVs continue driving sales growth in June