Retail sales of new cars and light trucks fell 8% since the war in Iraq began, compared to the same period a year ago, according to J.D. Power and Associates.

According to Automotive News, J.D. Power said retail sales on March 22 were down 14% compared with Saturday, March 23, 2002, and Sunday's retail sales were down 12%.

However, J.D. Power noted that the dropoff was not nearly as severe as the decline after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, when sales fell 33% in the two weeks that followed, compared with the same time in 2000.

Power Information Network receives new vehicle retail data from 3,245 dealerships in 26 U.S. markets. The data includes U.S. retail sales for cars and light trucks. Fleet sales are not included.