While General Motors, after being slapped with numerous probes and lawsuits over the handling of a 2.6 million cars recall over defective ignition switches, has so far made a record number of call backs, the sales in May showed the consumers undeterred by the safety issues.
Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra is preparing her statements as federal authorities are ready for a new round of congressional hearings and probing, but the economy and the fact that the US Federal Reserve kept the target interest rate at a record low is aiding the automaker in posting unexpected positive results.
Topping by a far margin analysts estimates, General Motors moved to increase the sales tally in May by 13%, aided by growth coming from the compact Chevrolet Cruze and the newly upgraded Chevrolet Silverado pickup and Cadillac Escalade sport-utility vehicle.
“There’s also an impressive amount of competitive product out there,” said Alec Gutierrez, a senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book. “There are great vehicles in every segment and in every category helping drive consumers back into the marketplace.”
While General Motors has so far recalled 14 million cars in the US alone (and keep in mind that 2014’s seasonally adjusted annual rate is projected at 16.8 million cars), this was the automaker’s best month of May in the last seven years and its best month since August 2008 – when Lehman Brothers Holdings was signaling the start of the latest serious economic crisis.