DETROIT - Record-setting sales performance in GM's Latin America, Africa and Middle East, Asia Pacific and Europe regions during the second quarter of 2008 helped General Motors sell more than 2.28 million vehicles globally during the second quarter 2008. GM sales outside of its North America region grew 10 percent (up 116,000 vehicles). Compared to second quarter 2007, GM's total sales were down 5 percent, reflecting continuing economic pressures and labor disruptions in the U.S. market, which pushed North America sales down 20 percent (236,000 vehicles).
GM sold 4.54 million vehicles in the first half of 2008, keeping it on track to exceed nine million vehicles for the fourth consecutive year. Sales outside of North America grew by 209,000 vehicles during the same period. On a year-over-year basis, GM total global sales were down 3 percent for the first six months of 2008.
GM Continues Growth in Emerging Markets
"Our sales performance around the world shows that we are moving quickly to respond to new market opportunities around the globe and are meeting customer needs with fuel-efficient products that offer compelling design and great value," Jonathan Browning, vice president, global sales, service and marketing, said today. "Our global sales performance during the second quarter was fueled by Chevrolet globally and Wuling and GM Daewoo regionally."
Chevrolet sales in Asia Pacific, the industry's second-largest region, grew 27 percent compared with the second quarter a year ago. Chevrolet sales in China (up 33 percent) and India (up 9 percent) powered much of this growth. The Chevrolet brand was recently introduced in Vietnam, a new market with strong growth. The Wuling brand continued strong growth in China with sales up 35 percent in the second quarter compared to the same period a year ago. The Buick LaCrosse ECO-hybrid, made by GM's flagship venture Shanghai General Motors, has just begun sales in China and is expected to be the first mass-produced hybrid sedan in China's mid and above market segment.
In the Latin America, Africa and Middle East region - a traditional Chevrolet stronghold - sales grew 18 percent compared with the second quarter 2007. Chevrolet accounted for nearly 90 percent of the region's second quarter sales.
Chevrolet sales in Europe also contributed to the brand's solid second-quarter results, growing 19 percent. Chevrolet is seeing strong growth in emerging markets including Eastern Europe. For the first half of the year, in Russia, Opel sales increased by 96 percent while Saab increased 81 percent and Chevrolet was up 49 percent. Also in Russia, Cadillac saw a 51 percent increase in first half sales and Hummer was up 21 percent compared with a year ago.
Chevrolet sales in North America were down 16.5 percent; however, GM is adding production capacity to satisfy the strong demand for the all-new Malibu sedan.
Sales of Cadillac outside of the United States grew 14 percent in the second quarter, supported by strong growth of the brand in Latin America, Africa and Middle East (up 28 percent), Asia Pacific (up 11 percent) and Europe (up 7 percent). Cadillac expects a further boost to global sales with the recently announced CTS coupe and restyled SRX crossover vehicle. In North America, Cadillac sales declined about 8,000 vehicles, largely due to pressure in the luxury SUV market.
Note: Global sales results are based on preliminary numbers reported and have been rounded.