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Justin Bimmer

General Motors February 2010

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DETROIT – Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac dealers in the U.S. reported sales of 138,849, up a combined 32 percent compared to February 2009. These results were driven by the continued strong growth of new GM crossovers and passenger cars.

GM’s Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac brands continue to build momentum in the marketplace, according to Susan Docherty, GM vice president, Sales, Service and Marketing. “Although we’ve been operating as a new company with four brands for just seven months, our February results demonstrate that our long-term plan is already paying dividends,” Docherty said.

Retail sales for GM’s four brands were up 7 percent for the month, driven by strong consumer demand for GM’s crossovers. February retail sales of GM’s newest crossovers – Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain and Cadillac SRX – were up 198 percent compared to the vehicles they replaced. This was the seventh month in a row that retail sales of these vehicles were up more than 100 percent.

“We’ll earn every sale by delivering the value customers expect, in the vehicle they want,” said Docherty. “Our sales results for the Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain and Cadillac SRX show these vehicles have what customers are looking for today – style, fuel efficiency, quality and the safety and security of OnStar.”

Month-end dealer inventory in the U.S. stood at 420,000, which is 30,000 higher compared to January 2010, and 361,000 lower than February 2009.

Other Key Facts:

* Chevrolet: total sales up 32 percent; retail sales up 1 percent; Chevrolet Equinox retail sales increased 121 percent

* Buick: total sales up 47 percent; retail sales up 18 percent; Buick LaCrosse retail sales rose 100 percent

* GMC: total sales up 26 percent; retail sales up 25 percent; GMC Terrain retail sales were up 303 percent (compared to the Pontiac Torrent – the vehicle it replaced)

* Cadillac: total sales up 32 percent; retail sales up 13 percent; Cadillac SRX retail sales were up 490 percent

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Malibu outselling Cobalt??? WTF?

Man, the American and Canadian markets are so different. I bet the Cobalt outsells the Malibu 2 to 1 here.

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CTS seems to be hurting.

All of Cadillac is hurting... maybe this is why Nesbitt got canned.

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It annoys me that the front drive SRX sells. But new GM products often sell well out of the gate while they are heavily advertised, then sales drop off a year or two later. CTS was a hot seller in 2008, now it struggles. CTS has been around 2600-2900 units a month for several months in a row. STS and DTS are about dead, might as well put them out of production now.

I think the whole year sales of the 4 core brands will be up, since many would be Pontiac or Saturn buyers will probably go to a remaining GM brand, and 2009 was so miserable, it is hard to do worse.

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It annoys me that the front drive SRX sells.

Why? Does it annoy you that the RX/MDX sell? They are the meat of the market.

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Yeah, the CTS sales have been disappointing lately. And I like that car a lot - I'd hate to see GM turn that into a FWD car in the future, which I can certainly see those bozos doing. But keep in mind it still sold right in line with the Infiniti G and outsold the Lexus IS - which is essentially it's core competition.

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Oh ,and to add to my post above - I think the CTS may simply just be a little too expensive. Just a thought.

I'll bet the sales of the CTS would pick up a bit if they lowered the price around $5k or so.

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Why? Does it annoy you that the RX/MDX sell? They are the meat of the market.

Because GM will always chase volume over profitability and will chase short term sales to appease dealers rather than worry about the long term. Cadillac could put the CTS on the Malibu platform and sell it for $28,000 and sell tons of cars, then where will Cadillac be in 5-10 years? So my worry is that GM will push Cadillac down market to Lincoln level or even below in order to stir up sales. The only positive in that is that it would signal the end of Buick.

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Oh ,and to add to my post above - I think the CTS may simply just be a little too expensive. Just a thought.

I'll bet the sales of the CTS would pick up a bit if they lowered the price around $5k or so.

x2.

the thing about the new CTS......stay with me here.........its a little too luxury biased in terms of styling and such. the last gen CTS had some attitude the new one lacks. the new ones looks a bit flabby, the last gen one looks scrappy.

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x2.

the thing about the new CTS......stay with me here.........its a little too luxury biased in terms of styling and such. the last gen CTS had some attitude the new one lacks. the new ones looks a bit flabby, the last gen one looks scrappy.

Yeah, I sort of get what you're saying. It's almost a little too nice for it's intended audience (younger people who buy BMW 3 Series).

I also kind of think of the current CTS as sort of this weird, somewhat expensive misfit in the world of luxury cars. It isn't a true G35, IS350 or 3 Series competitor because of it's weight, but it also really isn't cross shopped by those in the market for a 5 Series, Infiniti M or Lexus GS either because it isn't quite that size (that's a complete assumption, but I'll bet I'm right). I hate to say it, but as much as I really like the car, I can sort of understand why it's having trouble gaining traction like the first generation one did.

Actually, my wife and I looked at them before we bought her G35 back in 08. The new (at the time) CTS was just too expensive the way we wanted it equipped. It was supposed to compete with the G, but it sort of didn't - it was too nice but at the end of the day, it didn't seem as "valuable" in a sense. (Plus my wife still associated Cadillacs with old men - even though she liked the car - go figure).

I think GM would be smart to make the next CTS a little bigger to compete with the Lexus GS / Infiniti M and 5 Series (and keep it rear drive of course). They would also be smart to make a 426 hp version LS3 motor optional (as well as still having the uber mega 556 hp V8 in the V Series). This would give Caddy an honest to God competitive midsize type luxury car that it doesn't really have in the current STS. This new smaller ATS we all think may be coming can then truly compete with 3 Series / IS models as Caddy's "entry level" car - something that only tips the scales at around 3300-3500 lbs like a 3 Series or IS. Make the direct injection 3.6L engine they have now available across the line - but tune it up a bit. I think it needs around 350 horsepower - which I'm sure is quite possible without much tweaking.

Doing these things would give Cadillac more relevance and make them more competitive in the market place. The CTS isn't working because it's the wrong size and doesn't have enough power to lug it's 4000 lbs weight around. It comes in mid pack in comparisons because of this I think - and it kind of shows in the sales.

I see plenty around Houston - but I don't see them in the same quantities as I do other luxury cars. They're sharp, but just not quite right in the market place.

Maybe Cadillac should do something crazy and go back to using names - like Eldorado and Seville. It could create some buzz and get people looking at them that may not have even given them a thought. I sort of think it would be this sort of cool, retro-yet sort of post modern thing that could make Cadillac somewhat more interesting to young people.

Edited by gmcbob
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Just for the lulz...

Anyone notice that GM is up 12.6% over last year with almost no contribution from Saturn, Saab, Hummer or Pontiac, which we all know was the most important brand ever. Seems to me all that talk of Buick and GMC folding 5 minutes after Pontiac was completely unfounded.

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x2.

the thing about the new CTS......stay with me here.........its a little too luxury biased in terms of styling and such. the last gen CTS had some attitude the new one lacks. the new ones looks a bit flabby, the last gen one looks scrappy.

+3

I want to like the new CTS... I really do... but it just isn't my '04.

1st gens still turn my head... current gens don't anymore

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the latest gen ones go more for posh. its a theme that seems to attract flies on poop on the new SRX (at the autoshow the SRX was a hit with the old folks and yuppies).

but for a performance minded bunch, the CTSv is too pricey. there is not enough of an every mans sport look to the reg CTS.

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^ Maserati's are too pricey for the performance-minded bunch.... so they are not for everyone... nor the Section 8's. Same goes for the CTS-V.

The C1 CTS always caught my eye because it was unique. The C2 catches my eye because it's so upscale-looking, yet it's still a CTS. I still find the C2 amazing, and I see plenty of them around.

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Agree Balthazar, I like both generations.

Chris

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