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Chevy HHR gets strong launch

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Chevy HHR gets strong launch
Automaker now sees annual sales nearing 100,000

By Jamie LaReau
Automotive News / September 12, 2005


DETROIT - Confident that the Chevrolet HHR is a hit, General Motors plans a robust 2006-model production of 100,000 units.

"They've got me on max overtime and running every one I can make," Lori Queen, GM's vehicle line executive for small cars, told Automotive News.

The HHR is built at the Ramos Arizpe, Mexico, plant.

The wagon starts at $15,990 including shipping with the top model in the $24,000 range, a Chevrolet spokesman says.

As GM moves to value pricing - setting stickers closer to transaction prices, often while offering more equipment - the HHR will prove that the strategy will work, Queen says.

During an interview at the Los Angeles auto show in January, Gary Cowger, then GM North America president, said Chevrolet expected to sell 80,000 to 100,000 units annually. In June, GM revised that goal to about 60,000 a year, said Jim Campbell, director of Chevrolet car marketing.

But Queen insists the plan was always to build 100,000 HHRs annually.

"There have been pessimistic buying forecasts, but we're convinced we'll sell every car we can make," she says.

GM started shipping the HHR to auto dealers in late June. In August, 5,760 HHRs were sold, outpacing the Scion xB, but trailing the Honda Element and Chrysler PT Cruiser.

"The dealers keep telling us, 'I put one out on the showroom floor, and it sold that night,' " Queen says.

Dealers say they have orders and are waiting for vehicles.

"Give us as many as we can get," says Keith Lang, general manager of Tennyson Chevrolet in Livonia, Mich., told Automotive News.

"Everyone that's come in has gone out the door as soon as we got it."

Lang said he has sold five HHRs since June.

Selling for sticker

According to PIN data, the HHR's average transaction price in August was $20,199.

More: http://www.autonews.com/article.cms?articleId=54441
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i dont understand why anyone would spend 24 on an hhr, they have more than enough options on the base and u can pick on up for around 16
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Chevy labels it a truck for CAFE reasons. They list the SSR as a car for the same reason. I agree though, it's really a car.
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A friend of mine's girlfriend wanted to get an HHR but she opted for the H3 because for $20 more a month on a lease she was like why get the HHR. Nobody is dealing on them because they are the new "hot" GM vehicle.
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I don't understand why people consider the HHR a truck... :blink:

[post="13333"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]


The PT is a truck till they take the roof off and it becomes a car. Got to love Gov. regs.

I is just fun to watch the "it is not going to sell" people not understand tha it is selling.

I would not buy one myself but understand a new car with different styling and cheap will catch the publics eye and sell well. I expect it will do fine for the next 3-4 years and they can restlyle it to more of a degree than Chrylsler canthe PT. How about a mini 55 Chevy panel look?

If they can sell those boxes from Japan the HHR should be a hit.
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I am curious, though: how is the HHR doing in markets where the Japanese has market superiority? We have had them in stock for over a month and haven't solde a single one. Yeseterday, a guy came in, looked at it, loved it, but realized that the small Acura is the same lease money as the base HHR with a few toys - yet the Acura has leather and a roof! Apples to oranges, in my mind, but this is the mind set of an import buyer. I still think the HHR will do well, but GM can't treat this as a hot new car and expect to charge 4.9% on the lease when the competition is at 1.9. Not to mention, in this market, Chrysler is giving away the PT.
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If they are selling them for near sticker without rebates in todays market, then they've done well. With the ads just starting I do think it will pick up even in heavy "Asian" markets.
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I agree with others that GM should take caution on how it prices the HHR. It sounds like they are getting overconfident a little too early on, but I am glad the HHR is doing well. GM needed a hit, besides the Solstice.
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WELL HOT DAMN!!!!!

BOB LUTZ WAS RIGHT!!!!

Just think about all the hell the press gave him and GM when they were predicting just 80,000 units per year. So much in fact, that GM scaled the numbers back to 60K. Bet they won't acknowledge their screw up. Instead they'll bide their time for a couple years and call the HHR a failure (Like they're doing with the still well selling PT Cruiser)

I guess they started criticizing the car before the public got a look because they knew it had huge potential.

The damn things are selling like hot cakes here. And if I had the money I'd be on a waiting list for the HHR SS in a second.

In June, GM revised that goal to about 60,000 a year, said Jim Campbell, director of Chevrolet car marketing.

But Queen insists the plan was always to build 100,000 HHRs annually.


It's sad that the media is so unprofessional that a major company has to do this sort of thing to shut them the hell up.

outpacing the Scion xB,


:D

Chevrolet has a hit and they need to market the hell out of this thing. Build it up as a customizable, revitalization vehicle for Chevrolet. AND play massively on it's efficiency for the green image and SUV alternative/GM cares agenda.

KEEP THE MOMENTUM GOING!!!!
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I wonder when the final totals are in and Lutz is proven right will anyone admit they were wrong? I think in the long run this is only one of many more time Lutz will be proven right.
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I doubt they'll ever admit Lutz was right. They'll still insist that it's just a PT Crusier in Chevy clothes, and that it just rode on the success of the PT. In Autoweek they had some little write up of probably 6 sentences. They mentioned something about it being a "PT knockoff" three times; it's ok to say it once, but how about writing about the good/bad things about it rather than "oh, by the way, it's a PT knockoff" three times in a VERY short write-up.
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Robust sales of a new model does not mean its a "hit" especially considering something as different as the HHR. Let's see a year from now how well they are selling and then we can talk about a hit. I'll admit the HHR isn't my thing really...I do want to see it succeed just as I want to see GM succeed...but I said the same thing about the 300 last year and at least around me it carrys plenty of generous incentives a little over a year out.
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I'm not in love with the HHR but I want it to do well. One thing it does have going for it is price. At least GM has come up with something interesting that doesn't cost 30 or 40 grand like the SSR and GTO. I've checked out a few at my dealer recently and they were around 20 grand CDN which is pretty good. Although like CARBIZ mentioned, Chrysler is practically giving the PT cruiser away, in my neck of the woods they're offering a 24 month lease for 159 a month. I have not seen any HHR's yet but my son told me earlier today he saw two on the road today.
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I'm glad it is doing well, but the panel gaps on this thing are horrendous!
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I definitelyl ike hte HHR.  Its a slick looking ride.

[post="14087"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]


That's what I say.
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There is a terrific commercial for the HHR I saw about two days ago. It shows the HHR in all kinds of different colors, and kind of plays a barrage of HHR imagery to get in your face. It's also very 70's ish feeling to the production of the commercial, with a great song. Overall it's an incredibly well produced commercial. I really want to see it again, I am glad they showed it in a lot of different colors, I think the different hues are part of what make the HHR so attractive, especially with the chrome package.
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My HHR:

Dark Silver metallic

Cashmere leather

2LT package

rear bumper step pad

sunroof

premium floor mats

polished 17" rims

roof rails

running boards

5 speed manual trans

I just have to actually decide to order it.
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I've decided that...

if Chevy doesn't bring back the Camaro, then I will replace it with the following...
  • an HHR, because they are freekin cool
  • an Aveo, for the fuel economy
  • a Cobalt SS, because something has to feel fast compared to the other two
  • a Z06... hehe, don't I wish!
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This is great news, especially since most people don't even know about the car yet.
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I see them everywhere here in Charlotte.. But some of them are rental cars actually.
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The HHR is one GM car that I'm seeing alot of here in Portland. They seem to have a hit in an area that normally doesn't like GM cars.
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Robust sales of a new model does not mean its a "hit" especially considering something as different as the HHR.  Let's see a year from now how well they are selling and then we can talk about a hit.

I'll admit the HHR isn't my thing really...I do want to see it succeed just as I want to see GM succeed...but I said the same thing about the 300 last year and at least around me it carrys plenty of generous incentives a little over a year out.

[post="13861"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]

I dont see how the 300 is heavily discounted. They werent included in the employee pricing program. The most I have seen for a rebate was $1000.
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I think the next step they should consider is try to sell this thing in outside North America.
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