GM's U.S. Sales Plummet 49%

80% reduction in fleet sales.

In a market driven by consumer fear of a deepening recession, General Motors suffered a 49% year-to-year slump in U.S. sales in January.

GM said it delivered 129,227 new vehicles in the month, led by an 80% reduction in fleet sales.

At the retail level, sales were off 38%, with retail market share steady compared with December. GM said the slide came even as it ramped up cash incentives and discounted financing. "We're attacking this unprecedented market as aggressively as possible, while offering more vehicles than ever that provide great value and that Americans enjoy owning," said Mark LaNeve, vice president, GM North America.

"Our retail market share is a bright spot, holding steady above 21% for the second month in a row. That's a full point above the trailing 12-month average," he said.

"It's important to realize that we accomplished this retail performance as the overall market ran about six million vehicles behind where it was last January (on a seasonally-adjusted annual rate) and every manufacturer was deeply impacted."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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