Things change fast in the U.S. Auto Industry as it looks like it’s now Chrysler, Hyundai-Kia , Toyota and VW’s time to shine in 2012. GM and Ford are down in share for the year but they both have some strong product coming out that could put them back in the black when it comes to market share.
From the Detroit News:
General Motors Co.’s sales in the U.S. were down 8.2 percent for April as Ford Motor Co. reported last month’s U.S. sales were down, too, by 5 percent. Meanwhile, Chrysler Group LLC said Tuesday its sales were up 20 percent last month, making for its best April in four years.
GM sales were down to 213,387 primarily due to a 25 percent drop in fleet sales that the automaker said was because of the timing of rental customer deliveries. The company said its retail sales were essentially flat. GM also pointed out that April 2012 had three fewer selling days than the same month a year ago — only the second time that has occurred in the past 10 years.
GMC posted a sales increase of 4.5 percent during the month, driven by a 20 percent increase in sales of the GMC Sierra pickup and a 9 percent jump for the GMC Terrain crossover. Chevrolet, Buick and Cadillac all saw total sales fall during April compared to the same month a year earlier.
General Motors said today that it is sending letters to 661 dealers that lost their franchises through a dealership consolidation program, which will give them an opportunity to apply for reinstatement.
To qualify, the dealers would need to meet a number of financial requirements, such as having adequate capital to operate and available financing.
“This has been a very, very tough time as the company has emerged from bankruptcy,” said Mark Reuss, GM’s North America president. “It is emotional and it is part of the rebirth as we start the company from a clean slate.”
WASHINGTON — Toyota Motor Corp. “deliberately withheld relevant electronic records” that it was legally required to produce in lawsuits over SUV rollover accidents, the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said today.
Rep. Ed Towns, D-N.Y, said in a letter to the automaker that a review of documents subpoenaed from former Toyota lawyer Dimitrios Biller also shows Toyota may have “withheld substantial, relevant information” from federal regulators.
There is something going on in the auto industry that seems to indicate a rebounding economy. It doesn’t feel like a rebound out here, but pretty much all of the auto companies are increasing production and now GM is even talking about re-opening shuttered plants! Do they know something the rest of us don’t? We can hope that the auto companies will help lead the economy back from it’s current state of the blues but they still need buyers to make that happen.
General Motors Co. is looking to add capacity by bringing shuttered plants back on line using labor-intensive tooling, Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said.
“We are looking at taking an unutilized plant and putting in less-automated systems that you can put in quickly and at low investment,” Lutz said in an interview on Friday. “The downside is more labor cost. But we’ll gladly pay that labor cost to get an additional high-margin unit.”