General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM) reported Wednesday a 1.2 percent drop in sales in August compared to the same month last year despite strong demand for the company’s utility vehicles and trucks. The Detroit automaker said its analysts maintain their estimate showing U.S. car sales reaching pre-recession numbers for the first time since the collapse of the auto industry in the wake of the 18-month recession that ended five years ago.
“Car-buying fundamentals like employment and energy prices are in good shape, consumer confidence has reached a post-recession high and business investment is increasing,” Kurt McNeil, GM’s head of sales, said in a prepared statement.
Sales dropped for the Chevrolet, Buick and Cadillac brands while GMC jumped 10.4 percent compared to August 2013 on strong buying traffic for the upscale Sierra pickup truck, GMC’s best seller. GM top seller, the Chevrolet Silverado, spiked 13 percent to 49,201 units last month.
Chevrolet sales are down 1 percent with significant drops in core models like the Cruze compact, Equinox crossover, Malibu mid-sized sedan and Spark city car
Cadillac sales are down 5 percent for the first eight months of the year as the brand suffers from having only one crossover in its roster, the SRX, whose sales have carried much of the weight of Cadillac’s lackluster growth. A new generation of the SRX is due out for the 2016 model year. That and new leadership at the helm of GM’s premium label should help Cadillac’s performance.
GM said last month its OnStar RemoteLink App, which allows vehicle owners to check tire pressure and other diagnostics though their smartphones, hit one-million downloads in August, nearly four years after the introduction of the software. The app also remotely starts vehicles and provides a navigation interface.
Here’s a recent review of the 2015 Cadillac ATS Coupe: