General Motors’ U.S. sales up 5 percent in December image

General Motors reported its highest December sales in five years, with deliveries up 5 percent year over year to 245,733 vehicles.

December was also GM’s best retail sales month of 2012, with retail volume up 38 percent from November, about double the industry’s estimated increase.

“All four GM brands increased their sales year over year in December and we were strong across the board in cars, crossovers and pickup trucks. We also achieved an important fuel economy milestone. In December, GM became the first U.S. automaker to sell more than 1 million vehicles in a single year that get an EPA-estimated 30 mpg or better on the highway,” said Kurt McNeil, vice president of U.S. sales operations.

For the entire 2012 calendar year, GM reported sales of 2,595,717 vehicles, up 3.7 percent compared to 2011. Of the total number, retail sales in 2012 amounted to 1,922,458 units, up 3.1 percent versus 2011.

Total GM passenger car sales in December increased 14 percent compared with a year ago, while crossover sales were up 2 percent. Sales of trucks, which include pickups, vans and SUVs, were equal to those in 2011.

Cadillac passenger car sales increased 64 percent year over year as the all-new ATS and XTS gained market share. Year over year sales of the Chevrolet Silverado increased 6 percent while sales of the GMC Sierra were up 13 percent, with GM pickup sales being the highest since September 2008.