Mark LaNeve Still Standing. GM? Not so Much.

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Old GM’s marketing maven is New GM Sales and Service Supremo. Of course, Mark LaNeve held those latter two responsibilities before GM nosedived into bankruptcy. In fact, you could say that LaNeve’s administration of the sales and service elements of his tripartite position helped push GM’s corporate yoke into its maximum forward position. (I couldn’t possibly comment.) LaNeve should take some comfort in the fact that A) he still has a job, despite CEO Fritz Henderson’s dark hints about a sudden shiv in the shower; B) LaNeve still has a high paying job; C) his marketing remit has been filled by Bob Lutz, the only man on planet earth capable of making GM’s taxpayer-fronting taskmasters wish they’d stuck with LaNeve; and D) LaNeve gets a new business card! Automotive News [AN, sub]: “A GM spokesman said an official title remains to be created.” Suggestion box below. Meanwhile . . .

Automotive News also tells us that “ Weak July Sales worry GM.” They’re worried? As in what, wringing their hands? Running around muttering “faster! must move faster! that’s it! speed is everything!” AN has GM “grappling with weak sales” How macho is that? And if sales are so weak and GM’s such a great grappler, why are they so worried? I know! Let’s do the math!

Henderson said he is cautiously optimistic about the second half. In the first half, GM’s U.S. sales fell 40.4 percent to 947,518 vehicles. Industrywide sales plunged 35.1 percent to 4.8 million vehicles.

Well, that sucks. But let’s look at this in perspective, shall we? New GM says it can be profitable with a Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Sales Rate (SAAR) of 10 million—provided they don’t lose market share and the moon lines up with Saturn—I mean, Mars. Who’s SAARy now?

January – 9,818,849

February – 9,052,415

March – 9,325,891

April – 9,521,684

May – 9,905,134

June – 9,546,071

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

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  • Rnc Rnc on Jul 22, 2009

    The UAW and government ended up owning the company, but the UAW’s contract is barely touched and its retiree benefits are not touched. 1) The healthcare benefits are being hacked to the bone. 2) Thier shares are essentially worthless and provides an incentive to help the company succeed. 3) There was only so much of an advantage that the Gov. was going to allow GM and Cry. to gain over Ford with the BK with them funding it. Once again I didn't like it, but I do understand that an out of control Ch7 would have been far more costly than what was done. Just think about PGC and Medicare absorbing the retirees and thats just the Retirees. Then add in the much higher cost of providing unemployment and medicaid to whole communities and then transfer payments to cover lost tax base for education and infrastructure. Economy levels and rebounds (albeit at much lower level, but thats what all of closures/buyouts were for) in one/two year time frame and then if they collapse it can be absorbed. And the line of thinking isn't a politcal one, if so, Bush never would have made the original loans and kicked the can. Despite to right wing/left wing reitoric they all knew it.

  • Panzerfaust Panzerfaust on Jul 22, 2009

    This is proof that GM does recycle, and uses retreads.