General Motors U.S. sales increased 2.8% in April, continuing to rise above an ugly recall of millions of vehicles in the region and likely pushing up its market share.
The automaker says retail sales were particularly robust, its all-new large pickups gained some much-needed traction and pricing was strong.
“As we expected, the economy continues to strengthen,” says Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president-Sales Operations at GM.
“In addition, our award-winning new products are performing well, we have more on the way and our dealers are winning accolades for outstanding service,” McNeil says in a statement today.
GM delivered 254,076 cars, trucks and CUVs last month, compared with 237,646 in like-2013, according to WardsAuto data. There was one extra selling day in April this year. The automaker likely saw its market share bump back over 18% from 16.7% in March.
The result included gains at all four GM brands. Chevrolet deliveries rose 1.3% to 181,648 vehicles; Cadillac sales edged up 1.0% to 13,900; Buick posted a 7.7% increase to 19,214; and GMC saw demand lift 8.6% to 39,314.
The positive April period came against media scrutiny over the automaker’s big U.S. recall, which brings back 2.2 million small cars in the U.S. and 2.6 million globally to fix a defective ignition switch linked to 13 deaths and 31 crashes.
GM said last week parts had begun arriving at dealers and fixes were being performed, although it will take months to remedy all the units included in the campaign, such as the defunct but onetime popular Chevrolet Cobalt compact car.
“Although it is early, it appears we have not experienced a meaningful impact on sales and we continue to be optimistic about 2014,” GM CEO Mary Barra told journalists and Wall Street analysts in an April 24 conference call to discuss the restructured automaker’s first-quarter earnings.
The automaker’s internal investigation into the defective part, recalled in February, is expected to determine why the action took so long. Recently released documents trace the old GM’s knowledge of the problem back a decade. Meanwhile, victim lawsuits grow more imminent.
However, the situation seems to have had little effect on products from the new GM, as sales of the redesigned Silverado large pickup rose 4.4% to 42,755 units for its best month so far this year. Sales of the Chevy Impala large sedan, also newly redesigned, grew 22.3% to 13,915 units to lead the brand’s car business.
Chevy’s profitable large SUVs, the Tahoe and Suburban, benefited from redesigned models trickling into dealers, as deliveries rose 3.7% and 26.4%, respectively. The two trucks combined for 14,599 sales.
The fuel-sipping Chevy Volt delivered a relatively good month, too, accounting for 1,548 copies and a 14% rise over year-ago totals.
Cadillac sales were paced by the recently redesigned CTS, which posted a 31.1% increase to 3,270 units. Sales of the smaller ATS sedan, also new to the market, fell 3.4% on volume of 2,737. The brand still awaits a boost from the arrival of an all-new Escalade large luxury SUV in volume, as well as the ATS Coupe coming in the summer.
The newly launched Buick Encore compact CUV, one of the industry’s fastest-growing segments, saw deliveries nearly double to 4,317 units.
The GMC Sierra, also redesigned for ’14, duplicated the Silverado’s April performance with its best month this year, witnessing a 16.7% gain on 17,246 units.
Through the first four months of year, GM sales were flat with year-ago at 903,713 deliveries. The automaker continues to forecast 2014 industry sales in the range of 16.0 million to 16.5 million units.