Detroit's big three post double digit fall in 2009 auto sales

Detroit's big three post double digit fall in 2009 auto sales

In this Nov. 29, 2009 photo, a Holiday sale sign hangs over hood of unsold 2010 Chevrolet Colorado pickup truck at a Chevrolet dealership in Denver. AP Photo

For Ford, sales in 2009 totalled 1,682,323 units, down 15.4 per cent from 1,988,376 in the previous year. Chrysler, which had filed for bankruptcy protection last year, reported its worst sales in 47 years and sold less than a million units in 2009.

The Detroit-based company finished the year with 931,402 units sold, a decline of 36 per cent compared to the 1,453,122 units sold in 2008.

General Motors reported a 30 per cent decline in vehicle deliveries in 2009 to 2,084,492 compared to 2008.

"The year-over-year comparison reflects a 38 per cent reduction in fleet, reduced overall incentive spending and the orderly wind-down of the Pontiac and Saturn brands," GM vice president US Sales Susan Docherty said.

Docherty said the year 2009 was a "watershed year for us in many ways. From our dealer restructuring to our focus on Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC, we have made the difficult but necessary decisions to position our new company for success".

However, of the Detroit's big three only Ford reported an increase in sales in December 2009. Total Ford sales was up 32.8 per cent to 184,655 units compared to 139,067 in December 2008.

But Chrysler and General Motors, both filing for bankruptcy protection and banking on a government bailout package, saw their December 2009 sales decline.
Chrysler sold 86,523 units in December 2009, a four per cent year-on-year decline. GM dealers in the US delivered 208,511 vehicles in December, a total sales decline of six per cent from the previous year.

The companies hope 2010 would be a better year for them as the economy begins to show some signs of recovery.

"We are looking forward to 2010 as a year when the economy continues a modest recovery, industry sales begin to improve and our new products build additional sales momentum," Docherty said.

Chrysler said as it kicks off a new year, it would continue "to build momentum with some of the best products in the marketplace and we are enthusiastic about the new products coming this year".

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