Earlier this month we reported on the latest car sale figures for the Australian market in May but not every country … nor every segment … was as buoyant as the Australian market was in May. In once instance the impact of falling sales has led to some serious re-thinking of future plans.
General Motors experienced a 37% drop in the sale of SUVs and vans in the United States during May and, when you consider that GM makes more money from the sale of SUVs than it does from conventional vehicles, it’s no wonder that GM is re-thinking its future strategy.
GM did have a team of engineers working on developing fuel-saving technologies for their SUVs with a view to introducing them by 2012 but no more. The team has been dispanded and re-assigned to other projects and General Motors may soon be making changing it’s focus from SUVs to more fuel efficient cars.
Volkswagen is also experiencing some problems in what it describes as “a difficult market environment”. While sales are surging in China they are falling when taken on a worldwide basis. VW reported a drop in of 0.8 percent in worldwide sales in May.
Kia on the other hand reported a 16.5% increase in worldwide sales during May with large increases in all markets. Most noteable were a 56.8 percent increase in sales to China, an 8.8 percent increase in sales to Europe and an 8.6 percent increase in sales to North America.