Let's look at the GDP report from a different angle -- the percentage increase and what each component of GDP added to GDP growth.
First, GDP increased 3.5%.
Durable good sales added 1.01 of the 3.5% or 29% of the total increase. That number is the result of C4C. That number is also highly unusual -- meaning it is way out of the ordinary. The highest that number had been since the 4Q05 was .46 -- and that number was also out of the ordinary. Suffice it to saw we're not going to get a goose like that from this number again.
Non-durable goods added .31 and services added .57. So combined these two other areas of growth were responsible for .88 of GDP growth, or 25%. This is why the broad based increase in PCEs (mentioned below) is so important. While car sales were a reason for the increase, they weren't the only reason.
Gross private domestic investment added 1.22 to the 3.5. The big movers there were positive contributions from the change in private inventories and increases in residential investment.
While exports did increase, imports also increased meaning we're back to imports subtracting from growth.
That leaves government spending which added .48 of to the 3.5.
While C4C was a boost, it wasn't the only are that helped. There were other reasons for the increase.