By on August 2, 2012

What’s up this month at GM? Inventories of full-size trucks. What’s not? Sales of full-size trucks.

We’ve heard the GM party line about increasing inventories in advance of the plant re-tooling to build the new trucks. Which should be arriving before 2014. But don’t forget, we’ve always been at war with Eurasia.

And by that I mean, last June, GM had 288,000 full-size trucks sitting on dealer lots. As of the end of July, there are 238,165. And just like 2011, GM is not going to waver from the course regarding production levels or incentives. Automotive News quotes the Silverado as having a 136 day supply on the low as of the end of the month. Year-to-date, that figure rested at 124 days. Inventories have slowly crept up from past months, while sales for both trucks are at their lowest point since February.

The General had a pretty dismal month on the whole. As Bertel pointed out, GM’s retail sales were down, and their fleet sales were way down after being way up in June – likely as a result of them stacking the deck for their June numbers, to beef up their Q2 financial results. The prelimenary Q2 results aren’t looking good. As if that weren’t bad enough, their marketing chief just got turfed in a rather unceremonious fashion, their stock price is at an all-time low and they have shit the bed with the launch of their mid-size family sedan.

What would it take for GM’s truck stuffing strategy to go teats up? A spike in gas prices? The housing market not coming back amid economic uncertainty? From this vantage point, it’s looking like deja vu all over again, with the same mistakes being made over and over again, by the same players operating under the guise of a new GM. Says the Washington Post:

“Chris Ceraso, analyst at Credit Suisse Group AG, said this month that GM, already offering heavy truck discounts, may have insufficient demand that leads it to cut production as pickup sales lag the rest of the market. In the U.S. auto market, on pace to exceed 14 million sales for the first time in five years, slow-selling pickups are a rare weak spot.

A lot is at stake with full-size pickups. GM and Ford Motor Co., which makes more money on F-Series pickups than any other model, could use a stronger rebound in truck sales to divert investors’ eyes from European units that are piling up losses.”

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71 Comments on “GM’s Truck Inventories Keep Rising, Sales Keep Falling...”


  • avatar
    Felix Hoenikker

    If I were in the market for a new truck which I’m not, I would be shopping every Chevy dealer in town. Sooner or later, that excess inventory is going to get dumped at low prices.

    • 0 avatar
      Freddy M

      A few years ago a buddy of mine went shopping for a Silverado. He pitted a local dealer against one further away and they began fighting for his business, slashing their price. In the end, he went with his local dealer who undercut the farther dealer. What my buddy didn’t reveal was that the farther dealer was quoting him on the V6, and he got his local dealer to sell him the V8 for less than that.

      If this inventory issue continues, I fear that the Dealers will continue to scramble to unload this stock as you said while making serious errors, losing major profits in the process.

    • 0 avatar

      “Sooner or later, that excess inventory is going to get dumped at low prices.”

      Not a bad thing IMO. If anything, this can be GM’s way of paying back the tax payers who saved their a$$ in 2009. The savings will have a cascading effect in the economy. Business that save money buying discounted Silverados will pass the savings on their customers. Individual buyers who save money will spend their savings elsewhere benefiting more people.

      GM is profitable now ($2.2B in operating profit for 2Q and $4.3B for the first 6 months), so slightly bumping incentives should not hurt their bottom line. I would imagine there will be a fire sale soon with bloated inventories and the trucks already at the end of their life cycle.

      • 0 avatar
        Freddy M

        Passing along savings through a firesale is not tantamount to paying back the taxpayers who bailed out GM. It only benefits directly the customers who buy, and not the rest of the population who were forced into the bailout in the first place and only further erodes the health of the company bringing them back to the precipice they were on a few years ago.

        The only way to pay back the taxpayer is to use the bailout to make the company more profitable and sustainable (i.e. sell at a good margin) and then release the government of their shares, which at this point we all know is break-even at best.

    • 0 avatar
      ronhawk62

      I bought a truck in February, checked out everyone, except Nissan. I even have a GM credit card with a little over two grand extra rebate and have been a Chevy man as far as trucks go, so was leaning toward a Silverado. To make a long story short, I ended up with a Ram with the Chevy a distant fourth. The truck seems dated when compared to the Ford and Ram and I couldn’t justify buying an inferior product, even if I could get it slightly ceaper than a Ram.

  • avatar
    sunridge place

    Derek-the new trucks arrive as 2014MY in 2013. Surely that deserves a correction or clarification.

  • avatar

    the auto blogging world awaits a Robert Farago dissection of the current GM situation.

  • avatar

    We are still in a credit crisis.
    We still have over 10% unemployment (unofficially).

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      Strongly disagree that we are still in a credit crisis.

      For auto finance from Toyota to General Motors, from Kia to Ford, if you’ve got a FICO of 520 or better you can get 100% financing. Easy credit is back baby!!! (I’ve posted links to Toyota’s tiers and interest rates, they are published on many dealer websites and updated daily).

      Need a mortgage, 660 or better for FHA, 700 or better for conventional with as little as 5% down. Hey, 660 isn’t a great credit score. You can go lower if you have significant down payments – you know, the way it should be.

      I’m getting carpet bombed with credit card offers right now in the mailbox, and I’m a mid-700.

      For consumers – there is no credit crisis anymore. Things are pretty normal (and auto finance/credit cards are probably too darn easy again)

      • 0 avatar

        Strongly disagree with you – considering I work in mortgages and finance.

        CARS are only the SECOND most likely investment the average American will make – the HOUSE being the first.

        Car loans are much easier to get. In fact it is easier to get a NEW CAR LOAN than a used car loan because if you default – the bank can take the car back and have more residual value than would be found in the used car.

        House sales are slumped and consequently so is the economy. Interest rates kept artificially low is the problem. There is no incentive to save money and “easy credit” drives up demand so in order to counter higher demand, the price of the house itself increases. Not to mention many Americans are “underwater” on their home loans – owing more than they are worth.

      • 0 avatar

        There are 4 main aspects of getting a mortgage:
        #1 Credit History
        #2 Loan Amount
        #3 Equity
        #4 credit score

        “Need a mortgage, 660 or better for FHA, 700 or better for conventional with as little as 5% down. Hey, 660 isn’t a great credit score. You can go lower if you have significant down payments – you know, the way it should be.”

        You think it’s that easy? Perhaps where you live maybe – but in major metropolitan cities such as NYC, I assure you it isn’t.

        Having 5% of an inflated house value isn’t easy for most Americans. In fact, unless you have closer to 10% most banks don’t want to look your way.Government subsidized home loans are more liberal, but then again – THE GOVERNMENT IS THE PROBLEM HERE.

      • 0 avatar
        MeaCulpa

        I applaud the creativity of US financial institutions in most circumstances, but I always fail to grasp the point of the Credit scoring system being based largely on debtors earlier repayment of debt. That said, it seems like the printing – figuratively – of money had done loads for getting cheap credit back.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Re: credit crisis…

        I would like to point out that for those of us who have access to USAA, there has never been a credit crisis. I haven’t had to take out any loans, but…..

        Two of my kids took out loans for their new vehicles at rates that were excellent (1.79%/36months and 2.39%/48months). Those of you who have access to USAA should check out their loan rates.

        Another thing, when all sources of lending dried up in 2009 and 2010, USAA continued lending to their members without interruption, as did Navy Fed, Pentagon Fed, and a host of other lenders I’m not a member of.

        And like APaGttH points out, “Easy credit is back baby!!!”. All you need is a job. And there in lies the Catch 22 for people refused a loan.

        No fear! Obama’s here. He will send them a welfare check to keep them fed and housed. Food stamps too!

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    Everyone is expecting a truck refresh and are sitting on their money. When the new models come out, the current ones will be discounted severely… GM has been a bit vague exactly when this will happen. That and they have a habit of selling last year’s model for another year as the “classic” for a deep discount.

    I tried to buy a new Suburban recently, and they highballed me by 10 grand. I just laughed and told them I’d find a dealer within 200 miles willing to give me the deal I want.

    Turned out I found 4.

    • 0 avatar
      mcarr

      Yep. Count me as one who’s waiting for the refresh. Also, if it turns out to be a dud, I’ll give my money to Ford or Dodge (Ram). I have a slight affinity for GM trucks, but I’m also fickle.

  • avatar
    PintoFan

    All of the articles in this series have either missed/ignored the point that GM cannot easily reduce production to meet demand. Once the supplier contracts are set, as well as the labor and production times, reducing or eliminating production becomes a money-losing proposition. Suppliers and laborers will still have to be paid, regardless of how many trucks are produced, and downtime on the line generates a constant flow of red ink. From the perspective of GM management, it is a much better choice to continue producing pickups that might have to be discounted later, than to drastically cut production and throw money in a black hole of lost opportunity. I believe Baruth already outlined in a very excellent article how the production allocation system of most manufacturers is based on market estimates, and not rolling demand.

    What has happened here is that GM guessed wrong about the demand for its pickup line many months ago when production projections were made, and not some conscientious decision to “stuff the channel.” I have a feeling that this is actually understood by the majority of writers and readers here, but it has become too profitable of a pinata for the bloggers to be given up now.

    • 0 avatar
      Mark MacInnis

      @PintoFan:

      There is an aspect of this YOU seem to be ignoring, mate.

      The CEO of GM is, in effect, Barack H. Obama. How embarrassing would it be for him if GM were to shut down any operations while he is canvassing key battleground Midwest states, which also happen to be home to GM and supplier companies, while he is taking victory laps for the automotive bailouts? Layoffs for plant shutdowns would raise the unemployment rate, lower the stock price and increase the taxpayer loss on the bailout.

      This is the new centrally-planned America. Even if it makes sense to curtail operations to keep inventories at a rational level, shutdowns or deviations from plan are not allowed. Especially if they will reflect badly on The One We’ve All Been Waiting For.

      There. I said it. Now the haters can all start roasting me for injecting politics into an automotive discussion. But as a writer on this site wrote last week: Hey, don’t blame me for putting politics in the automotive industry…the politicians did that when they dreamed up the bailouts.

      Peace, out.

      MacDaddy

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        Mark, I didn`t think BHO was the CEO. Isn`t that officially Akerson? Also unless I am mistaken the US Government doesn`t own half of GM.
        Maybe BHO “retroactively resigned”!
        Layoff’s might actually increase the stock price. Most companies when they embark on cost cutting see an increase in the stock price. Investors like cost cutting.

      • 0 avatar
        ithiel

        As far as I can tell, the U.S. government currently owns no more than a 30% stake in G.M. Even if BHO did want to “play CEO,” a ~30% stake is hardly enough for him to call the shots.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        ithiel, I don’t think you understand the power of the bully-pulpit.

      • 0 avatar
        86er

        The term “bully pulpit” was coined during the administration of Theodore Roosevelt.

        It didn’t mean “bully” in modern parlance, as in “school yard bully”. It meant “bully” in the then-popular expression to denote something fortuitous or splendid.

        TR was noted to have said that the office of the presidency was a “bully pulpit” from which to bring forward policies on matters such as conservation and the deconstruction of trusts.

      • 0 avatar
        tuffjuff

        Man, I long for the days when people can remove their douchey politics from my hobby of automobiles.

      • 0 avatar
        Mark MacInnis

        All it would take is a visit to the RenCen by one, anonymous-looking Department of Transportation Agent (resemblence to Agent Smith of “the Matrix” is co-incidental.)

        The conversation would go like this:

        “Mr. Akerson, are you contemplating shutting down the Silverado truck lines because your inventories are so high?”

        “Why, yes…yes we were…we want to do the right thing by our shareholders.”

        “Mr. Akerson. GM still is not robustly healthy. Are you? And in the future, you might need more….help, shall we say from the federal government? A friendly federal government could be a big help to you, say, if the economy went into another recession, would it not?”

        “Why yes, Agent Smith. You folks in D.C. have been a big help. And you could be in the future, I s’pose.”

        “Mr. Akerson. You do realize that shutting the Silverado truck lines would not be looked on favorably by your patron in Washington, don’t you?”

        “Why, yes, Agent Smith. I can see how closing those lines and putting some people on layoff would not be a good thing for your boss. Yes, I can see that pretty clearly. Voters might get upset. People are already plenty nervous.”

        “Yes. Just so. And we wouldn’t want to go and rock the boat any further, now would we, Mr. Akerson?”

        “Why,no. No we wouldn’t. It wouldn’t be seemly. I can see that now. No, it wouldn’t do to do anything precipitous right at the moment. But it’s gonna go hard on our profitability, that’s the thing. But I suppose if we can count on some help from you nice folks in Washington, if the recession balloon goes up again…..well, I think we can keep those truck lines going a mite longer. Yes, I’m positive we can.”

        “Thank you, Mr. Akerson. I told my boss you’d be reasonable. And about those IRS notices? You can just toss them in the trash can.”

        Chicago politics at its finest…..

      • 0 avatar
        Volts On Fire

        tuffjuff, I wish we could go back in time, too. All the way back to 2008.

        I also wish we could then convince Dubya to make the correct decision and let GM die, and pass into liquidation.

        Or maybe we could travel back to 2009, when Barry O. compounded his predecessor’s error.

        Don’t like it? Too bad. Focus your anger and disgust on those responsible – including anyone dense enough to buy a post-2008 GM product, since they are only exacerbating the problem – and act accordingly.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Yeah, hindsight is always 20/20. I always thought Shrub got bad advise, but I understand why he did it, so BHO could have some time to evaluate Shrub’s “too big to fail” strategy. Instead, BHO doubled down and bought the whole US auto industry as a reeeeward for the UAW getting him elected prez.

        So now we’re in for a penny, and in for a pound. There ain’t no do-overs. There ain’t no going back. We better get used to the fact that we, the people, are going to keep GM going, no matter what the cost, just like the US Postal Service, Fannie and Freddie. If you’re working, you’re payin’.

        And just so you know this is not a political football, it won’t matter who is in the White House or who runs Congress next year. Stay tuned, there will be more of the same.

        This isn’t too big to fail any more. It has morphed into “No Can Fail”.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        It seems pretty obvious that some individuals have invested a fairly disturbing amount of time, effort, and ego into establishing these conspiracy theories, so attempting to dissuade them is probably going to fall on deaf ears. However, it seems likely to me that if the President and his administration were in fact pulling all the strings behind GM, Volt production would still be churning ahead full tilt. But of course, it would be silly of me to think for a second that any of this rumor-mongering is based on sincerity and not craven political opportunism. I’ve read a few too many comments to be fooled into that one.

        The fact that at least one person considers the continued existence of GM, making money, to be a “problem” is enough to make any sane person balk. Such comments should make it clear that this “debate” is much more about feeding conservative nerd rage than it is about what’s good for the country.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        PintoFan, it no longer matters if the GM bailout was the right thing to do, or not. We are committed to keeping GM going ad infinitum. Those opposed had better get used to it. It is a recurring theme and the people working are the ones paying for it.

        They will follow their own beliefs in choosing to buy a GM product, or not, depending on how the bailout has worked for them.

        And whatever ‘profits’ GM is making in North America today is being sucked away as fast as they make it to support their other operations and JVs elsewhere which are losing money.

        GM’s top management has got to do something about their overseas operations, while at the same time downsizing manufacturing in Canada, a very expensive place to manufacture now.

        GM is certainly not going to downsize in America and incur the wrath of “The Government of and by the People”. But any new plants or plant expansions have to go to low-cost areas like Mexico, Central and South America in this hemisphere.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        Nobody is committed to “keeping GM going ad infinitum.” That is basically just a meme that has been adopted by a certain political faction as gospel truth. It’s likely that if GM encounters a bankruptcy scenario again, especially if it is during a time of relative economic prosperity, they will be allowed to go under. This same group also almost universally regards the bailout as a pure political favor to the UAW, ignoring the continued weakness of that union as well as all other mitigating circumstances involved. Both of these shibboleths can be described as truthy at best. You can’t make people stop being blind to unpleasant realities if they don’t want to see them. The purely political attacks on GM will continue as long as there’s somebody there to listen.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Only time will tell, but it is not in the national interest to let GM fail, if and when GM needs another bailout. GM is not Solyndra. That was bogus from the start.

        Letting GM go belly-up again would be an admission of failure of both the Bush administration’s bailout policies and the Obama administration policies of intervening in the normal course of the life cycle of a corporation.

        I’m an Independent, but both my Democrat and Republican friends have told me that future bailouts for GM are a given, just like Fannie and Freddie, and just like the US Postal Service. There are some institutions that the government simply will not allow to fail. The Airline industry is another.

        Such is the course we embarked on with Bush and continued with Obama. No matter who runs the country next year, they’re not going to let bailed out companies like GM fail.

        That would be an admission that the whole TARP and bailout debacle was an exercise in futility. No politician wants to campaign on that premise and track record.

        At least with companies that deal in making money, like those in the financial sector, there’s a reasonable chance of getting paid back.

        But with companies like GM that has to earn its money by selling something they made, it is a lot harder to recoup any of that bailout money if the demand for their product is not sufficient.

        And currently the demand is not sufficient.

      • 0 avatar
        jkross22

        @Pinto:

        “Such comments should make it clear that this “debate” is much more about feeding conservative nerd rage than it is about what’s good for the country.”

        I didn’t realize corporate welfare was good for the country. That’s what is in place now, and it’s not just limited to GM. Pity you can’t see that corporate welfare ought to be fought against, and that you’ve mistaken it for being in ‘the good of the country’. This is not a D or R issue.

        “It’s likely that if GM encounters a bankruptcy scenario again, especially if it is during a time of relative economic prosperity, they will be allowed to go under.”

        Why do you believe this to be the case? If history serves as an indicator, money and political power dictate who gets bailed out and who does not. Over the last 5 years, only a handful of companies got bailed out because they were deemed too big to fail. Yet, no accountability or systemic changes were introduced to remove the threat of too big to fail. Same old song and dance.

  • avatar
    brettc

    And the GM executive circle jerk continues… Botched Malibu launch, trucks that are rotting on lots, and Volts and Cruzes that have a tendency to catch on fire.

    Looks like we need a GM death watch #261 to be written. Maybe Robert Farago can guest-write it?

    • 0 avatar
      segfault

      I’ll get my popcorn. How long will it take for GM to go Tango Uniform a second time?

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      Volts catching on fire? Was that ever shown to be the cars fault as opposed to having a severely damaged Volt left in a wooden shed for two weeks?

      I suppose you could drive an Escape!

      They have had some issues which you listed but the Cruze, Verano and ATS launches seem to have gone OK.

  • avatar

    +1 Often too in such situations you end up with a lot of “free” option packs.

  • avatar
    alan996

    And as stated on a couple of financial sites, analysis of the last quarter of GM’s financials:

    profit from Gm’s sub prime loans to customers equals 93% of the stated quarterly profit for all of the company.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      Oh, please show me those websites and that analysis where 93% of their quarterly profit is from subprime loans….I need some good reading material for lunch.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        “please show me those websites and that analysis where 93% of their quarterly profit is from subprime loans”

        Alan is going to have a tough time doing that, since it isn’t quite accurate.

        What is true is that during Q1 2012, 93% of GM Financial’s loans were subprime.

        What that doesn’t tell you is that GM Financial was formerly AmeriCredit, a subprime automotive lender that GM acquired in 2010. Its primary job is to handle leasing and subprime car loans.

        GM also has an ongoing relationship with Ally (formerly GMAC) to make auto loans. A lot of GM’s other consumer financing is being run through Ally, rather than GM Financial.

        During Q1 2012, GM Financial was responsible for 1% of revenues but 18% of operating income. http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1467858/000146785812000029/gm2012q1.htm Subprime lending can be quite profitable, but it isn’t carrying the company.

      • 0 avatar
        sunridge place

        Alan is still looking I guess.

        Another little known fact is the GM Financial just started floor plan lending to dealerships. I didn’t have time to jump into the debate a few weeks ago about ‘GM’ having their capital tied up with high Silverado inventories in floor plan lending when it could be more effectively used in other areas of the business.

        That’s Ally’s capital…not GM’s. Ally still holds about 80% of their (GM’s) dealerships floorplan financing.

  • avatar
    Viquitor

    What I find hard to believe is that the US Government went through all that trouble to rescue GM, just to see the same mistakes happen again.

    One of the reasons for which Chrysler is doing great – and helping Fiat survive – is that Fiat management agreed upon a number of goals in order to gain the right to buy Chrysler shares. They had to come up with new products, with better fuel efficiency and profitability while keeping the workforce happy and the US plants working.

    How come GM wasn’t submitted to the same rules?

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      Or put another way, GM’s bankruptcy was nothing more than changing the drapes and vacuuming the carpets. There was no systemic, leadership or cultural change, and that’s why we’re seeing the same behaviors with ‘new GM’. At least they had the decency to not change the logos.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    “last June, GM had 288,000 full-size trucks sitting on dealer lots. As of the end of July, there are 238,165.”

    GM has 50,000 fewer units than it did a year ago, but you want to claim channel stuffing?

    I know that the rhetoric is fun, but I think that if you actually look at the segment numbers and put it into context, you’ll see this:

    -Automakers generally have seen 2012 as the year to fight over US market share. Since the market took such a beating during 2009-10 and a lot of the gains in 2011 were fleet, 2012 was expected to be the year that retail gains could be made, and production was increased accordingly in anticipation of taking more share.

    -If you look at full size trucks, I think that you’ll find that GM increased sales volume, but lost market share. In other words, GM’s sales increased, but Ford’s and Ram’s increased even more.

    As of now, Ford has the best selling truck, and with the lowest incentives. Ram has increased share at an above average pace, with the highest truck incentives.

    Now, put it together: Ford is beating GM on product, while Chrysler is squeezing GM at the bottom end, competing on price. GM is left in the middle, competing neither on product nor on price.

    This isn’t a matter of either the pending 2014 launch (which is over a year away) or of channel stuffing, but of having a stale product that isn’t competing as aggressively on price as it could be. As the first poster noted, more incentives are coming.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Stop making sense or DeadWeight will show up.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      When, exactly, will the 2014 GM trucks officially launch? I believe that automakers can begin selling 2014 models next spring, which isn’t that far away.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        “will the 2014 GM trucks officially launch?”

        The press accounts indicate that launch is planned for sometime during autumn 2013.

        As of now, the truck is still in final testing, so they aren’t ready to starting building it.

        “I believe that automakers can begin selling 2014 models next spring, which isn’t that far away.”

        Under federal law, an automaker could start producing the 2014 models as early as January 2, 2013. But GM won’t be doing that.

  • avatar
    Juniper

    According to GMs sales and production site, GM built 30K pickups and sold 40K pickups in July. That is a one week reduction in inventory just in July. With the scheduled shutdowns this wil continue. Sorry, don’t buy the channel stuffing rant. No matter how many times you write about it.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      “According to GMs sales and production site, GM built 30K pickups”

      I think that you missed the Mexico production on the second page of the production report. Include those, and GM built about 50,000 Silverados and Sierras.

      (Those aren’t all intended for the US, but most of them are. You can’t directly compare the US production and deliveries figures, since some of the production isn’t made for US consumption.)

      • 0 avatar
        86er

        According to goodcarbadcar-dot-net, at least 8000 GM trucks were sold in Canada*.

        I don’t think anyone outside GM knows how many Mexican-made GM trucks were sold in Canada, however.

        *June 2012 figures most recent available

    • 0 avatar
      Juniper

      OOPS my bad. Damn GM and their channel stuffing!!

  • avatar
    nickoo

    GM is ramping up inventory to hold over for the upcoming shutdown related to their next truck model. There really isn’t much to see here.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      There may not be much to see here, but this is a great time to buy a GM product. The problem as I see it is that not enough people are willing and/or able to take advantage of the current prices.

      Those who are ready, willing and able to buy a new vehicle seem to be gravitating to the old favorites like Ford trucks, Toyota Camry, Honda Accord and Civic, and the ever-soothing Corolla.

      The only newcomer to this sales bonanza seems to be Fiatsler and its Chrysler 300,200/Jeep Grand Cherokee line of vehicles. They do pretty well. People stand in line in some parts of the country.

      But as far as GM truck sales go, their strategy may be to bulk-up for the 29-weeks plant re-tooling for the 2014 pickup trucks, but why would anyone want to buy a 2012/2013 Silverado when the latest and the greatest trucks from GM are within sight and within reach?

      Well, only unless they are desperate and need a low price, now, and have to settle.

      • 0 avatar
        sunridge place

        It may be a great time to buy a GM Truck…but its an even BETTER time to buy a Chrysler.

        http://blog.truecar.com/2012/08/01/honda-and-toyota-have-record-high-average-transaction-prices-for-third-straight-month-industry-incentives-decline-for-three-consecutive-months-according-to-truecar-com/

        Looking for the biggest discount? Chrysler hits the trifecta!

        http://blog.truecar.com/2012/07/18/july-truetrends-greatest-discounts-2/

        Yeesh…Chrylser fanboys are the worst.

      • 0 avatar
        sunridge place

        They are stacking them deep and selling them cheap over there at Chrysler. And, good luck getting them to release their fleet #’s.

        You have a better chance at getting the Colonel’s secret recipe than getting Chrysler’s fleet sales numbers.

    • 0 avatar
      billfrombuckhead

      This “channel stuffing” meme is just anti-GM, anti-Obama propaganda. GM is coming up with a new truck and doesn’t want their dealer network to be selling from an empty wagon while they change over.

  • avatar
    Sinistermisterman

    Can anyone tell me:

    A) How long it would take GM to retool their truck plants for the new model.

    B) How many pickups GM are selling on a month to month basis?

    All I’m thinking is that if this inventory matches roughly what the plant downtown will be, then there’s nothing to see. If not, then it is of interest.

    *edit*

    Ok, I did some reading and number crunching (I could be wrong), but according to GM, they are looking at shutting down 3 plants for retooling over a 21 week period, but will only have 1 plant shut down at a time (so I figured we’re looking at 7-8 weeks downtime in total).
    When you look at GM’s production figures for May 2012, the 3 plants being retooled produced approximately 70,000 vehicles, so with 7-8 weeks downtime you’ll be looking at a loss of production about 110-130k vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      At current sales rates they’d only sell 86K-98K vehicles in 7-8 weeks. They’re also sitting on a 19.5 week supply. Something other than matching supply to demand is motivating GM’s production strategy.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    “Volts and Cruzes that have a tendency to catch on fire.”

    Oh really? Show me 1 real world example of a Volt that has started on fire. Ever. Last time I read about a fire near a Volt it was from an out of control Toyota(stuck accelerator?) that careened into it while it was parked and then began to burn while it rested on top of the Volt.

    “What has happened here is that GM guessed wrong about the demand for its pickup line many months ago when production projections were made, and not some conscientious decision to “stuff the channel.” ”

    Hooray – someone on this site that actually understands manufacturing!

    • 0 avatar
      Mark MacInnis

      Oh? And the company can’t adjust? Or it doesn’t want to?

      Or, someone in D.C. doesn’t want them to.

      People are so naive….

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        Carlson, the premise is wrong – the company can (and should) adjust. They did that (rightly or wrongly) for the Volt and stopped the line. Yes this is a larger scale. But they have repeatedly said they would use reduced production, rather than incentives to control inventory. They have done a reasonable job on the car side (around 60 ish days). Just need to do it with trucks.

        Some people are just so looking for a conspiracy….. Mark. If your premise was correct then why haven`t GM been told/ordered to increase production of cars towards say 90 day supply (not unprecedented)? Instead car inventory is pretty normal. Are you one of those who a few years ago said that with the Government being a large shareholder the type of car built will be dictated (towards green cars)? That was an incorrect statement because we have Camaro ZL1′s and Cadillac V series cars.

      • 0 avatar
        chicagoland

        What about the banks bailed out? They took more $

        People talk as if ONLY GM/Mopar were bailed out.

  • avatar
    ajla

    136-day supply and it is still about impossible to find a non-Denali truck with the 6.2l V8.

    • 0 avatar
      mcarr

      Ha ha, that’s another thing. Most of the inventory is the same build options. Good luck trying to find a 6.2L. HD trucks are pretty sparse too.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        Yea, dealer inventory for trucks can be very frustrating.

        Finding the engine, cab configuration, final drive, and driveline that you want is nearly impossible. To say nothing of other lesser options.

        You pretty much have to do a special order, but dealers have so much in stock inventory right now that they aren’t too keen on doing that.

      • 0 avatar
        Grunt

        GM doesn’t put the 6.2 in HD trucks, they use the 6.0

  • avatar
    TomHend

    I try to keep in mind the scope of debt we are facing when we talk about the “taxpayers bailed out GM” or “GM paid back the taxpayers”.

    The US stopped being run with tax dollars decades ago. It has all been about issuing debt and managing debt to the tune of hundreds of trillions of dollars.

    Our tax dollars can not even pay the vig on this debt.

    The US Treasury is issuing debt and the the US Fed is buying that debt-think about that for a minute (it is fact it is on the Fed’s own website)The Chinese are not buying our debt, Europe is not buying our debt (and not for nothing the Fed is buying every other countries debt too)

    Our debts can never be paid back so a funding crisis will begin in the future and the defaulting not far after that. Credit scores, taxpayers bail outs will not matter then.

    We are not becoming Greece, we are Greece, we are so far in debt that the loan to GM does not even move the needle.

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    What about AIG, Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, and other banks bailed out then? Forgetten convieniently.

    What is also funny is all the imports are subsidized by their countries. But they get a pass. VW is parted owned by a German state. So, don’t buy any of them, too.

  • avatar
    billfrombuckhead

    Another reason GM wants a lot of trucks sitting around is the coming September Mopar assault on the truck market with the 2013 RAM boasting the best gas mileage of all fullsize trucks. Don’t want any Chevy diehards switching just due to lack of inventory.

    Basically it would be management malpractice not to have a large inventory of trucks while GM’s factories are switching over to the new model.

  • avatar
    cheezeweggie

    “Man, I long for the days when people can remove their douchey politics from my hobby of automobiles.”

    I couldn’t agree more. Politics and religion they say…


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