GM Reports 308,817 Deliveries in August; Up 31.3 Percent From July and the Highest Monthly Sales Total in 2008; Employee Discount For Everyone Extended
* Car retail sales increase driven by Chevrolet Malibu sales up 212 percent, Pontiac Vibe up 114 percent, Cadillac CTS up 87 percent, Corvette up 49 percent and Chevrolet Impala up 27 percent compared with last August
* Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia and Saturn Outlook crossover retail sales up 29 percent
* 80,000 Chevrolet Silverado, Avalanche and GMC Sierra pickups sold, best month since August, 2007
* Chevrolet Tahoe, Suburban and GMC Yukon sales highest so far in 2008 with more than 22,000 deliveries
* August had largest total, retail and fleet deliveries so far in 2008
* Anticipated best monthly market share performance of 2008
DETROIT - General Motors dealers in the United States delivered 308,817 vehicles in August, making it GM's best monthly total, retail and fleet sales performance so far in 2008. The strong showing was spurred by GM's Employee Discount for Everyone sale in celebration of GM's Centennial later this month. In response to ongoing customer and dealer demand, the sale is being extended through September 30, 2008 and a number of 2009 models are being added due to dwindling 2008 inventories.
Compared with an exceptionally strong retail and fleet month last year, August total sales were down 20 percent. However, when compared with July, 2008, total sales were up 31 percent, retail sales were up 32 percent and fleet sales were up 29 percent. Last August's sales performance was influenced by significantly lower fuel prices and a 0 percent APR for 60 months offer on pickups.
Notably in August, Chevrolet Silverado, Avalanche and GMC Sierra had their strongest total sales month since last August, with more than 80,000 vehicles sold, as GM full-size pickups continue to build market share calendar-year-to-date. Silverado sales were up 69 percent, Avalanche was up 59 percent and Sierra sales increased 75 percent compared with July, 2008.
Chevrolet Tahoe, Suburban and GMC Yukon full-size utilities had their best performance of the year with total sales up 33 percent compared with July with more than 22,000 vehicles sold. Overall, GM August truck sales (excluding crossovers) declined 25.6 percent compared with a year ago.
"Our award-winning lineup of new products, combined with the GM Employee Discount for Everyone sale that started August 20th, helped drive additional showroom traffic and our dealers are giving us some very enthusiastic feedback. We had our best sales month so far in 2008. Today we're announcing the extension of the sale through September 30, and we've added 19 additional 2009 models to the eligible list of vehicles because our 2008 stock on dealer lots is rapidly disappearing," said Mark LaNeve, vice president, GM North America Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing.
"With the recent moderation in fuel prices, we're seeing some relaxation of pent-up demand in pickups and utilities. Our August sales of these segment-leading trucks and utilities has been the best in nearly a year and August marked the fourth consecutive month that truck sales as a percentage of GM and industry sales increased. We also saw double-digit retail increases in our crossovers compared with July," LaNeve added. "We saw great car retail performance in our launch products, including the Chevrolet Malibu, Cadillac CTS, Pontiac Vibe and G8, and Saturn Astra, and continued strong retail demand for our fuel efficient Chevrolet Aveo and HHR."
Chevrolet retail car sales were up 18 percent, Pontiac retail car sales increased 11 percent and Cadillac retail car sales were up 10 percent compared with last August.
Cadillac CTS dominated the mid-car luxury category with retail sales increasing 87 percent compared with the same month a year ago.
Saturn Astra monthly sales of more than 1,900 vehicles were the best to date, and show a 28 percent increase compared with July 2008 (Astra was not available last August).
GM's popular midsized crossovers -- Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia and Saturn Outlook -- together accounted for more than 14,600 vehicle sales in the month, with a retail sales increase of 29 percent compared with a year ago.
GM hybrid vehicles continue to gain in popularity in the marketplace with 530 hybrid Chevrolet Tahoe, 267 GMC Yukon and 1 Cadillac Escalade 2-mode SUVs delivered. There were 388 Chevrolet Malibu, 26 Saturn Aura and 417 Vue hybrids sold in August. For the month, a total of 1,629 hybrid vehicles were delivered, with 7,096 hybrids sold so far this year.
"Customers are responding to our six hybrid models - vehicles that provide industry-leading value, great fuel economy and the best warranty coverage of any full-line automaker," LaNeve added. "We're working hard to change perceptions and gain awareness of GM as the leader in advanced propulsion technology and fuel efficiency."
GM has aggressively managed inventories to low levels. In August, only about 736,000 vehicles were in stock - the lowest August level since 1998 - down about 209,000 vehicles (22 percent) compared with last August. There were about 256,000 cars and 480,000 trucks (including crossovers) in inventory at the end of August.