GM assures Wall Street of pricing discipline amidst discounts

Article by Anita Panait, on March 10, 2014

General Motors has assured Wall Street analysts that it remained focused on maintaining pricing "discipline” for its full-size pickups despite offering discounts over the last month. GM sent its new chief financial officer, Chuck Stevens, New York to update Wall Street analysts on the carmaker's financial outlook, including the performance of its full-size pickups.

He gave assurance that GM will the prices at premium especially on the profitable full-size pickups. GM is "working on marketing strategies to gain traction at the lower end of the (pickup) market without giving up pricing gains at the high end," remarked UBS Securities in a client note. Analysts, however, reacted cautiously to the message and observed that GM only disclosed few details about recent incentives. Just last week, GM sent a letter to dealers, detailing plans for March sales promotions at Chevrolet, describing it as an "unprecedented promotional assault."

New data on February sales incentives, released to Reuters by two industry research firms, indicates increasing discounts on GM trucks. According to Autodata, the average per-vehicle discounts on the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado pickup leaped over $500 from $3,715 in January to $4,218 in February.

GM posted a 12-percent year-on-year drop in Silverado sales in February as Chevrolet saw its share of the full-size truck segment dive over three percentage points to 22.5 percent.  On the other hand, Ford Motor Co. cut discounts in February on its F-series pickups to $2,835, but still posted almost 3-percent rise in year-on-year sales and commanded over 34 percent of the segment. Ford is planning launch a redesigned F-150 late this year. [source: Reuters]

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