GM's Strong August Pushes SAAR towards 16 millionhttp://www.fool.com/investing/general/2013/09/04/gms-strong-august-pushes-saar-towards-16-million.aspx Daniel Miller
September 4, 2013
While consumer retailers like Wal-Mart recently reported softening sales, the automotive market continues to stay strong. WardsAuto is projecting that the seasonally adjusted annual rate, or SAAR, could top over 16 million units for the month of August. It would be the first month that amount has been hit since November 2007. One of the reasons that the SAAR is surging toward 16 million is due to a very strong report by General Motors (NYSE: GM) this morning. Let's check in on some of the highlights and think about what we can expect in the automotive market for the rest of 2013.
Finally GM and its investors have reason to cheer the passenger car segment because the redesigned Chevy Impala is such a hit with consumers that retail deliveries increased to 76%. Not to be outdone, retail deliveries of the Chevy Malibu surged an impressive 93%. Those weren't the only cars having success: The Chevy Volt, Spark, Sonic, Cadillac XTS, and Buick Verano all posted their best sales months ever.
What's even better is that GM's retail sales continue to improve while its fleet sales, which are typically less profitable, continue to decline. For the month of August, GM's retail sales were up 22% compared to the drop of 4.9 percentage points in fleet sales compared to last year.
"The second half of 2013 is off to a very solid start for GM and our model-year change over an