Riding the strength of recently redesigned crossovers and a robust month for the industry, General Motors reports its October U.S. daily deliveries rose 1.7%, despite limited availability of its No.2 selling vehicle.
The Detroit automaker sold 252,813 cars and trucks last month, compared with 258,588 in the same period last year, according to WardsAuto data. Although GM’s volume fell compared with October 2016, its year-over-year comparison was up thanks to one fewer selling day last month.
The industry enjoyed an uncharacteristically strong October, with seasonally adjusted annualized sales eclipsing 18 million units.
“We are heading into the fourth quarter with good momentum, thanks to a strong U.S. economy and very strong pickup and crossover sales,” says Kurt McNeil, vice president-U.S. sales operations at GM.
McNeil says demand last month for the automaker’s crossovers, also known as CUVs, was so strong GM dealers would have sold more if inventories of key models were higher.
A month-long strike by workers at GM’s Ingersoll, ON, Canada, assembly plant cost thousands of units of Chevrolet Equinox production before the automaker resolved the dispute Oct. 15. The Equinox 5-passenger crossover is GM’s No.2 selling product behind the Chevy Silverado large pickup and recently was redesigned from stem to stern.
“The all-new Chevrolet Equinox is off to a great start and we could have sold even more if we had more available,” McNeil says in a statement.
GM still managed to deliver 25,272 copies of the Equinox compared with 19,664 last year, an increase of 33.7%.
Other newly redesigned GM crossovers also did well last month. Sales of the 3-row Chevy Traverse grew 5.2% to 11,098 units from 10,984 year-ago, while the big Buick Enclave sold 5,243 units, up 35.5% from 4,017 year-ago.
The 5-passenger GMC Terrain was down 2.9% but still managed 5,046 deliveries, while sales of the Buick Encore compact crossover jumped 30.1% to 8,972 from 7,164.
GM’s bread-and-butter Silverado saw deliveries rise 11.1% to 53,157 from 49,768, while demand for the GMC Sierra large pickup soared 30.6% to 18,895 from 15,050. Sales of GM’s big SUVs were down across the board compared with year-ago.
The all-new Chevy Bolt battery-electric vehicle drew 2,781 buyers last month, again outpacing its plug-in stablemate the Chevy Volt which saw demand tumble 35.7% to 1,362 units from 2,191.
Reflecting an industry trend, GM truck sales including crossovers accounted for 200,013 deliveries, up 10.2% from 188,753 year-ago. Car sales sunk 21.3% to 52,800 from 69,835.
GM’s inventory of car and trucks finished October at 813,648 compared with 820,741 last year. The automaker reiterates it expects significantly lower year-end inventory levels compared with 2016.