GM sales up 13pc in Middle East
Dubai, October 21, 2008
General Motors (GM) has announced a new Middle East sales record for the first nine months of the year, with its sales in the region up by 13 per cent to 111,944 units compared to the same period in 2007.
This success can be attributed to three key factors: increasing demand for the company’s full-size SUVs, a huge rise in sales for GMC and the growing popularity of the GM brands in the Lower Gulf and the smaller markets, said a statement.
At a press conference held in Beirut, Lebanon, to announce General Motors’ quarterly business results in the Middle East, Terry Johnsson, president of General Motors - Middle East operations, said: “It is extremely rewarding to see that the General Motors line-up is attracting customers across the region.
“Looking forward, there are exciting times ahead for GM, with models such as the Chevrolet Traverse, Cadillac CTS-V, Hummer H3T and Sierra Denali just around the corner, and equally highly anticipated models such as the Chevrolet Cruze and Camaro set to arrive next year.
“GM grabbed the headlines on September 16, our 100th anniversary, when we announced our vision for the future by unveiling the production version of the Chevrolet Volt. This extended-range electric vehicle is set to rewrite automotive history and revolutionise the way we travel,” he said.
GM’s best-selling models across the Middle East continue to be its full-size SUVs - the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban, the GMC Yukon and Yukon XL, and the Cadillac Escalade – with sales up by 38 per cent over the first nine months of 2008. At the opposite end of the size spectrum, and reinforcing GM’s reputation for offering great value cars, the fuel efficient Chevrolet Aveo and Optra models occupy second and third place in the sales chart, the statement said.
With year-on-year sales up 41 per cent on 2007, the GMC brand continues to go from strength to strength. Combined sales of the Yukon and Yukon XL are 37 per cent to 22,535, while the GMC Acadia luxury Crossover SUV, in only its second year on sale in the Middle East, has sold 4,725 units, firmly establishing it among GM’s top ten best-sellers. The arrival earlier this year of the all-new compact SUV, the GMC Terrain, has stretched the appeal of the brand to a new breed of customers, it said.
Combined Cadillac, Hummer and Saab sales are up 21 per cent over the first nine months of 2007. Cadillac’s award-winning, all-new CTS luxury sedan and Escalade luxury SUV have strengthened their appeal among premium brand customers, with big year-on-year increases. A 56 per cent increase in sales of the rugged Hummer H2 and a 21 per cent rise for the Saab 9-3 are further proof of the all-round appeal of GM’s premium brands, it said.
Chevrolet has also performed strongly in 2008, with sales up 3 per cent to 71,035 units, around two-thirds of all GM sales in the region. The best-selling Tahoe and Suburban full-size SUVs recorded combined sales up 42 per cent on last year. Chevrolet’s Aveo, Optra and Caprice models occupy second to fourth place in the GM best-selling list, while a 27 per cent rise in demand for the Epica has helped it to jump into fifth place.
Across the region, GM also recorded some outstanding sales increases in Lebanon (+111pc), Oman (+43pc), the United Arab Emirates (+31pc), Iraq (+21pc), Kuwait (+18pc), Saudi Arabia (+8pc) and Syria (+6pc).
Meanwhile, sales of GM vehicles in Bahrain this year are up 17 per cent on the same period 2007. GM has registered year-to-date sales of 2,126 units in the kingdom.
GMC continues to forge ahead as the company’s best-performing GM brand in Bahrain, with year-on-year sales in the first three quarters of 2008 up by a massive 90 per cent to 765 units. This growth was principally attributed to the continuing popularity of the full-size SUVs, the Yukon and Yukon XL, as well