General Motors said Tuesday its sales were up 4 percent, year over year, to 231,378 vehicles in February as consumers flocked to U.S. automakers’ SUVs and trucks. Winter conditions pushed overall U.S. new car sales growth below expectations, but most analysts expect sales lost to cold and snow to be recouped later this year.
“A large swath of the country and high-sales areas like the Northeast were socked by storms right at the all-important end of the month, when the bulk of sales are recorded,” Michelle Krebs, senior analyst, AutoTrader.com, said in an email. “The economic fundamentals continue to be supportive of healthy car sales. We may well see lost February sales made up in the spring months.”
GM saw strong increases of 20 to 33 percent in Buick, Chevrolet and GMC sales. Cadillac was pulled down 11 percent on shrinking car sales, despite strength in its Escalades. GM’s Chevrolet Silverado deliveries saw a 35 percent increase to 57,837 over February 2014.
“GM’s year-over-year pickup deliveries increased 37 percent,” Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president of sales, said in a statement. "That follows January’s 42 percent increase and December’s 43 percent increase.”
The Detroit automaker saw big jumps in the Chevrolet Tahoe, up 49 percent to 7,410, Chevrolet Traverse, up 28 percent to 9,705, and Buick Encore, up 60 percent to 4,921. The GMC Yukon and Terrain were also up by double digits. Chevrolet Suburban SUV deliveries more than doubled from last year, to 4,436.
More than 9,000 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon midsized pickup trucks were sold last month after the trucks went on sale late last year.
Here’s a comparison from AutoGuide.com of the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado and the 2015 Toyota Tacoma, the two leading and competing midsized pickup trucks in the U.S. market.
GM RECALLS SINCE THE START OF 2015
Nearly 60,000 Cadillac ATS compact luxury cars were recalled to replace power-operated sunroof switches to meet federal standards. In the affected vehicles, the switches that control the sliding and tilting of the sunroof aren’t recessed, which means they can more easily be pressed by accident to close the sunroof, increasing risk of injury.
A recall affecting more than a million mostly older Toyota Corollas, Avalons and Matrixes includes the 2003 and 2004 model year Pontiac Vibe, which was manufactured by Toyota under a defunct joint venture with GM. Fluctuations of an electrical current (called “noise”) in a module controlling air bags and seat belt pretensioners can cause the safety equipment to deploy inadvertently, increasing the risk of an accident.
Nearly 6,000 2015 Buick Enclave luxury crossovers, Chevrolet Traverse full-sized crossovers and GMC Acadia full-sized crossovers were recalled to replace the manufacturer-provided Goodyear P255/65R18 Fortera HL tires. The tires might crack unexpectedly, increasing the chances of crashing.
Nearly 1,200 2014 Chevrolet Impala sedans were recalled to replace the parking brake control module software. The recalled cars were part of a larger parking brake recall from last year, but these vehicles didn’t receive the proper software update after the repair was made. The flaw can cause parking brake pads to remain partially engaged with the rotors, which can cause problems with acceleration and braking.
Forty-three 2015 Chevrolet Corvettes were recalled to fix a suspension problem that can cause a failure of vehicle stability and steering control.