GM Sales Rise 7.3 Percent in 2013, Even as All Brands Fall in December

2014 Chevrolet Malibu

December 2013 was not an especially strong month for General Motors, with all four brands posting a decline compared with December of 2012. Chevrolet was worst with total sales of 153,493 this month, down 8.1 percent from last year. However, things were much brighter for GM’s year-end numbers, as all four brands posted an overall yearly increase in 2013 compared with 2012. GM sold a total of 2,786,078 vehicles in 2013, up 7.3 percent over last year’s total.

Winner: 2014 Chevrolet Malibu, Up 33.2 Percent

Chevrolet’s refreshed 2014 Malibu continues to leapfrog the 2013 model, as the midsize sedan sold 15,493 copies this month. That’s 33.2 percent higher than last December, and puts the Malibu closer to strong sellers like the Cruze compact sedan and Equinox crossover. Still, the Malibu’s overall sales for 2013 are 4.9 percent lower than the 2012 total; we’ll see if the sedan’s strong sales will continue through 2014.

Winner: Cadillac ATS, Up 30.5 Percent

Cadillac’s smallest sedan is also its second best-selling model behind the SRX crossover, with the ATS posting 3887 sales this month, up 30.5 percent from last year. The ATS also surpassed the larger CTS and XTS sedans in year-end sales, with 38,319 units sold throughout 2013 compared with 32,559 for the XTS and 32,343 for the CTS. The CTS’ recent redesign could make for a close race between the two Cadillac sedans next year, though, as the 2014 CTS was one of the finalists for our 2014 Automobile of the Year award.

Winner: Buick Encore, 31,956 Units Sold in 2013

The Buick brand saw a 6.6 percent decline in December, but a 13.9 percent sales increase for 2013 overall. Considering that the Lacrosse and Regal sedans both saw significant drops of 14.5 and 24.1 percent this year, respectively, much of Buick’s success can be attributed to the addition of the compact Encore crossover. The Encore sold 31,956 units in in first full year of sales. The larger Enclave crossover, Buick’s best-selling model overall, also contributed to the brand’s sales uptick this year, with year-end sales 6.8 percent higher than in 2012.

Loser: Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, Down 16 and 4.6 Percent, Respectively

GM’s big-selling full-size pickup trucks posted a decline this month compared with last December, with the Silverado’s 42,593 units and the Sierra’s 17,854.These numbers represent declines of 16 percent for the Silverado and 4.6 percent for the Sierra compared with December 2012. Overall, though, the redesigned versions of these pickups have done well in 2013, with year-end numbers for the Silverado and Sierra up 14.8 and 17.3 percent, respectively.

Loser: Chevrolet Volt, Down 9.2 Percent

Despite a significant price cut this year, sales of the Chevrolet Volt range-extended electric vehicle have not taken off in 2013. The Volt sold 2,392 copies in December, 9.2 percent less than last year, making for a year-end total of 23,094 units sold in 2013. That’s a few hundred units shy of the Volt’s 2012 total of 23,461 sales, despite big incentives from earlier this year. The updated 2016 Volt, with a rumored 20 percent increase in all-electric range, can’t come soon enough.

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