GM Slashes Production as U.S. Sales Drop 53%

Will cut production 34%

General Motors announced plans to slash second quarter production by 34% as it reported a whopping 53% drop in year-on-year U.S. sales for February. GM said it would cut second quarter production to 550,000 vehicles from 834,000 vehicles in the second quarter of 2008. Truck production will fall to 355,000 units from 452,000 in 2008 while car production will be cut to 195,000 units from 382,000 vehicles in 2008.

GM estimated that total retail sales for the month were down 45% compared with February 2008, which would make it the weakest February since 1967. GM said its poor performance in February was driven by a 75% reduction in low-margin fleet sales.

"It remains a tough and challenging market, but seeing some upticks in volume and showroom traffic compared with last month is encouraging," Mark LaNeve, GM's vice president for North American sales, service and marketing said.

GM delivered 127,296 vehicles in February. Car sales of 53,813 units were off 50% and truck sales including crossovers of 73,483 were down 55% compared with a year ago.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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