GM was the first manufacturer to sell over 1m cars in China last year, and record sales elsewhere outside the U.S. made its global total of 9,369,524 cars and trucks around the world in 2007, an increase of 3%, a virtual tie with Toyota’s group sales of 9.37m units. Some observers had expected Toyota to overtake GM last year.
"We set a record in China with more than a million vehicles sold. We nearly doubled our sales in Russia to an all-time record of more than 258,000 vehicles delivered. And we set a record in Brazil with nearly a half-million vehicles sold," John Middlebrook, GM vice president, Global Sales, Service and Marketing Operations said yesterday.
The 2007 tally was the second best global sales total in the company's 100-year history and marked the third consecutive and fourth time (2007, 2006, 2005 and 1978) GM sold more than 9 million vehicles in a calendar year.
Global sales of GM's top-selling brand, Chevrolet, grew more than 4 percent to 4.49 million vehicles compared with 2006 sales of 4.30 million.
Cadillac saw global growth with sales increases outside of North America last year, thanks to a 45% increase from a low base in Europe, a 42% climb in the Latin America, Africa and Middle East region, and a 106% increase in the Asia Pacific region.
Saab saw annual sales increases of 13% in the Latin America, Africa and Middle East region, and 5% in Asia Pacific. In Europe, Saab maintained its market share position (0.4%).
In Europe, GM's record sales - for the second year - exceeded 2.18 million vehicles, up about 9 percent. Sales for the quarter of 529,000 vehicles were up 11 percent, exceeding the industry average. Full-year sales in Russia set an all-time record for the company by nearly doubling, up 95 percent. Sales volume in Russia exceeded a quarter million vehicles. Opel/Vauxhall, Chevrolet and Cadillac reported sales growth in Europe. Strong performance by the new Corsa, Astra, Meriva and Zafira led Opel/Vauxhall sales to more than 4 percent growth. Chevrolet achieved record sales of 458,000 vehicles, up nearly 34 percent. Cadillac sales were up 45 percent. Saab sold nearly 85,000 vehicles.
Saturn sales in North America were up 8% compared with 2006. GM Holden sold 158,000 vehicles in 2007 as the Commodore remained Australia's best-selling car for the 12th consecutive year. Holden held its second-place position in the country's automotive market. 2008 marks Holden's 60th anniversary producing Australia's first locally-developed vehicle.
Toyota, which was expected to have surpassed GM as the world's largest automaker, said on 10th Jan. 10 that it and its affiliate companies Hino and Daihatsu sold 9.37 million vehicles in 2007, without as yet breaking these sales down by market.