General Motors aims to increase its margins and focus on healthy retail sales, rather than relying on rental car fleets.
After record sales figures in 2015 and a solid January start, the automotive industry in the United Sates kept its pace with the best February numbers since 2000. Furthermore, new-car sales are likely to hit in March the highest monthly volume in 10 years. One of the main pushers behind these results is the rise in fleet deliveries. February sales charts revealed that FCA had a 39 percent boost in fleet sales, Ford’s had a 42 percent increase and Nissan’s fleets jumped to 54 percent. On the other hand, General Motors posted an unexpected overall decline of 1.5 percent last month, and only because it reported a 24 percent fall in fleet deliveries.
The biggest automaker in the US says cutting on fleets is a healthy approach for the business and plans to keep doing it this year as well. GM sold about 449,000 vehicles to US rental car companies in 2014, it reached 400,000 vehicles in 2015 and this year expects to sell about 310,000 to 320,000 vehicles to the daily rental market, GM North America President Alan Batey told Reuters in an interview.
He said that as long as the market share is stable, GM is on the right track. The company’s share fell from 18 percent a year ago to 17.3 percent in February, but it is still the largest of any automaker. “There’s nothing that would lead me to believe we’d be south of 17” for the year, Batey added.