Will Big Sales Gains for General Motors’ SUVs Translate to Big Profits?

General Motors (NYSE:GM) pronounced that a U.S. sales rose 15.7% in March, outpacing researcher estimates, on clever sales of trucks and SUVs opposite a 4 brands.

GM’s benefit not usually distant outpaced a 5.1% boost approaching by analysts polled by Bloomberg, it also outpaced gains during both of GM’s normal Detroit rivals. Ford Motor Company‘s (NYSE:F) U.S. sales rose 3.4% in March on high direct for a pickups, while a 45% burst for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles(NYSE:FCAU) Jeep code was a vast motorist of a 11% altogether gain.

Year to date, GM’s U.S. sales are adult 3.8% from a same duration in 2017.

A wine-red 2018 Chevrolet Traverse, a vast crossover SUV.

Sales of a vast three-row Chevrolet Traverse crossover, that is all-new for 2018, rose 41% in March. Image source: General Motors.

High and low points from GM’s Mar sales results

The high points:

  • For a many part, GM’s vast benefit wasn’t driven by low-margin swift sales. GM’s sell sales rose 14% in March. Its sell marketplace share rose to 17.7%, GM’s top turn in 9 years.
  • Demand for GM’s new crossover SUVs continued to be really clever opposite all 4 of a brands:
    • Sales of Chevrolet crossovers rose 39% from a year ago;
    • Sales of Buick crossovers rose 50%;
    • Sales of GMC crossovers rose 42%; and
    • Sales of Cadillac’s sole crossover, a XT5, rose 17%.
  • Despite unbending foe from Ford’s all-new Lincoln Navigator SUV, sales of a massively essential Cadillac Escalade rose 14%.
  • Sales of GM’s full-size pickups, a Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, rose a sum 14.4% to 69,629.
  • Sales of a Chevrolet Bolt EV rose 81% to 1,774.
  • GM had 72 days’ value of register as of a finish of March. (That’s a reasonable level. The takeaway is that GM’s inventories aren’t swelling.)
  • While GM’s inducement spending is up, it pronounced that a normal transaction prices (which are net of incentives) were roughly prosaic from a year ago, suggesting that margins aren’t nonetheless slipping significantly.

The low points:

  • While a Chevy Bolt continues to sell well, a hybrid sibling, a Volt-with-a-V, has slumped. Sales were down 16.4% to only 1,782 units.
  • Chevy’s coupes and sedans in ubiquitous had another tough month. Sales of a Camaro, Corvette, Cruze, Impala and Volt were all down by double-digit percentages. Only a midsize Malibu and a little Spark and Sonic managed gains, approaching from rental-fleet sales. (Rental-fleet sales represented 11% of GM’s sum sales in March, a sincerely low level.)
  • The all-new Buick Regal isn’t winning over buyers. Sales were down 38% from a year ago.

A dim brownish-red Cadillac Escalade, a vast oppulance SUV, on a New York City street.

Despite extreme foe from an all-new Lincoln, a Cadillac Escalade had a good month. Image source: General Motors.

The takeaway: GM’s U.S. sales almost set adult a good initial quarter

GM’s all-new crossovers are suspicion to be some-more essential than a vehicles they replaced. They’re clearly winning over buyers, with sales of big-volume models like a Chevrolet Equinox (up 31.4% in a initial quarter) and Traverse (up 30.1%) adult almost from a year ago.

Meanwhile, while GM’s other vast drivers of distinction — a trucks — have mostly managed year-over-year gains, a increments have been a lot smaller. That’s understandable: GM’s pickups and vast truck-based SUVs are impending a ends of their product cycles, with all-new models approaching over a subsequent integrate of years.

Taken together, these gains should some-more than equivalent a mislaid distinction from disappearing sales of many of GM’s sedans. With a initial entertain of 2018 now in a books, it looks like GM is on lane for another strongly essential year.

How GM’s U.S. sales compared to rivals’

Below you’ll find Mar sales totals for a 6 largest-selling automakers in a U.S. As we can see, GM’s benefit was a largest of a group, though all solely Nissan managed a year-over-year boost in March.

Data sources: The automakers. 

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