Model changeovers were the name of the game for General Motors’ March 2013 sales results. While the company was up 6.4 percent over last March, a number of the company’s flagship models saw big percentage drops due to changeovers to all-new models. GM’s March sales totaled 245,950 and all four of the automaker’s brands were up year-over-year. Below are some of the highlights from The General’s March sales.
Winner: Chevrolet Camaro
In the never-ending pony-car wars, the Camaro takes the cake against the Ford Mustang and the Dodge Challenger for March of 2013. Even though sales slipped by 12.8 percent, the 8102 Camaros moved off of Chevy lots last month was more than Ford or Dodge moved of their retro-styled two-doors. However, it was a slim win: the Camaro beat out the Mustang by a scant 414 units. The Challenger wasn’t too far behind, falling short of the Camaro by 1970 cars. Chevrolet should expect momentum for the Camaro to hopefully continue with the introduction of the updated 2014 model last week.
Winner: Chevrolet Silverado
The Silverado continues to be king of the GM ranch. It sold 39,561 copies last month, which represents an increase of 8.4 percent over last year and 16,301 units sold over GM’s number-two seller, the Chevrolet Cruze. With an all-new 2014 Silverado making its way to dealerships later this year, Chevrolet is selling off the remaining stock of the outgoing generation and, we assume, will ramp up output of the new truck once it goes on sale. That ramp up can only help – while the Silverado’s numbers are impressive, they pale in comparison to the 67,513 F-Series trucks Ford sold in March; even when combined with GMC Sierra sales, General Motors’ full-size truck offerings only totaled 53,378 units.
2013 brought an extensive refresh for the Lambda crossover triplets, and the automaker’s investment is paying dividends: all three models made huge gains in March. The Buick Enclave had sales swell by 55.1 percent to 5676 units, giving it the best growth and most sales of the brand; the Chevrolet Traverse moved 10,944 copies, an increase of 54.5 percent; and the GMC Acadia had the largest rise at 77.1 percent to 10,006 units. Some help may have also come in the form of rebates, though – at various points in the month, GM offered $1000-$3000 on the crossovers, depending on model and location.
Model changeovers can be hard. Production of the current car has already ended, the about-to-be-outgoing model is dated in the marketplace, and customers may have already seen the new model. That was the case in March for the CTS, Corvette, and Impala, all of which are being replaced this calendar year. Cadillac saw CTS sales tumble 37.8 percent from last year down to just 2791 units, which lags behind all other wreath-and-crest vehicles except the Escalade lineup. The Corvette was down 23.5 percent to 1053 sales; the Impala still managed to move 14,766 copies, but that represents a decline of 22.4 percent.
Despite being discontinued, three of GM’s deceased models continue to rumble off dealership lots. What we can assume are perhaps the last two Buick Lucernes found homes last month, bringing the 2013 total to four for the large sedan. Chevrolet and GMC’s compact Colorado and Canyon pickups sold 560 and 154 copies, respectively; however, GM has promised new, more-updated successors to the trucks to come in the next 12-24 months.
Source: General Motors