Who Wants to Know? GM Switching to Quarterly Sales Reports

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
We’re committed to finding, researching, and recommending the best products. We earn commissions from purchases you make using links in our articles. Learn more here
who wants to know gm switching to quarterly sales reports

Just ahead of today’s announcement of monthly sales numbers, The General announced it will be shifting to a quarterly model for releasing its sales performance data.

After today’s posting of numbers, one will no longer be able to scrutinize month-over-month fluctuations of GM’s four brands. March statistics (released today at 9:30am EDT) will be the automaker’s final monthly sales report this year. In 2018, second quarter sales will be released on July 3, third quarter sales on October 2 and fourth quarter sales on January 3, 2019.

“Thirty days is not enough time to separate real sales trends from short-term fluctuations in a very dynamic, highly competitive market,” said Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president, Sales Operations, in a statement posted by General Motors this morning. “Reporting sales quarterly better aligns with our business, and the quality of information will make it easier to see how the business is performing.”

Your humble author expects this to ripple through the industry with the speed at which your Great-Uncle Phonse makes his way to the buffet table. Other manufacturers will surely follow suit in short order.

To be certain, monthly sales can be volatile, as they are at the mercy of holiday timing, product launch activity, and even weather. This Newfoundlander can tell you that two weeks of unrelenting snow puts a damper on showroom traffic. However, quarterly reporting will make it more difficult for analysts to spot trends, problems, and successes.

It’ll certainly result in a huge dump of numbers. In Q4 of 2017, General Motors sold 806,739 vehicles. Parsing and interpreting all that data will be a task but you can be guaranteed your authors at this website will continue to do so, perhaps with an even more critical eye.

The General is quick to note that “GM’s high level of transparency on total, brand and nameplate sales, fleet mix and inventory will not change.” These are good words, but I’ll leave it up to the B&B to pass judgement on that particular quote pulled from the press release.

We will have what might very well be our final monthly sales report for the American market later today.

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

More by Matthew Guy

Join the conversation
3 of 19 comments
  • Civicjohn Civicjohn on Apr 03, 2018

    Well they have now put them in the same camp as Tesla, who never released monthly numbers. That's why they have creative terms like "surge production" to describe their quarterly reporting. Interesting that GM put up reasonable numbers compared to last year, but it certainly gives a lot of wiggle room when you've made the decision to shutter a brand. Maybe that will make it easier. One less TTAC monthly article, gonna have to double-down on "rare rides".

    • Peter Gazis Peter Gazis on Apr 03, 2018

      GMs loss I'll just spend more time commenting on everyone elses sales Examples: -Prius Deathwatch -Lexus car sales fall again. -Toyota fleet sales Rah! Rah! Rah! -Hyundai sales how low will they go. -Genesis implodes -Germans small cars big sales. -Volvo interior or stuff I bought at Ikea - Honda Ridgeline gets put on the endangered species list.

  • Fred Fred on Apr 07, 2018

    I think sales should be reported on a daily basis. You do it monthly or quarterly, people will procrastinate to make a sales. We all heard to buy "at the end of the month" Stop all that bs by reporting daily. Corporate can analysis it how ever they want.

  • SCE to AUX Another outsourced battery goes awry.
  • Jkross22 Nah, If I needed a truck, I'd get a Nissan titan or for nearly the same money a 20 yr old SR5.
  • Kwik_Shift No. It is hideous and jarring to look at. Why would I need this anyway?
  • Jeff From the side profile this gives off Taurus wagon vibes. Nice looking wagon love the exterior color and the interior. The burled walnut interior trim is beautiful.
  • Jeff I think initially there will be a lot of orders for this truck and then sales will crater. Those that want this truck mainly the Tesla fans will buy them and then anyone that wanted one will have already bought one. The Cybertruck kind of reminds me of the Delorean which was widely anticipated and once it was out and those who wanted a Delorean bought one that was the end. Both the Delorean and Cybertruck are stainless steel and both are weird looking. Maybe they could release a new Back to the Future sequence and have Doc drive a Cybertruck.