Trouble for GM (GM) as Q122 Sales Slip By 20%, What’s Next?

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Ollie Martin
Updated: 1 Apr 2022

Key points:

  • GM announce 20% drop in deliveries year over year
  • The company sold a total of 512,846 vehicles in Q122, lower than the 624,250 in Q121
  • Estimates suggest light-vehicle SAAR FOR Q1 was 14.1M, down from 16.8M last year

There’s been a lot of mixed speculation regarding GM (NYSE: GM), one of the U.S’s longest-standing vehicle manufacturers. In all honesty, the company isn’t poised correctly in the face of the EV transition. As the traditional ICE is swapped for ‘new energy vehicles’, manufacturers with the largest market shares should be seizing the chance to reimagine the company in line with changing global trends. It seems GM was a little late to the party, with production sitting comfortably behind the likes of Ford, whose F-150 Lightning pickup truck has seen significantly more demand than the similar model GM is working on. 

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It goes without saying, GM was inherently subject to supply chain difficulties that seriously subdued idealistic production deadlines, yet should that account for a 20% drop in deliveries year-over-year when other manufacturers are still showing annual growth? Possibly not. GM sold a total of 512,846 vehicles in the US in Q122, compared to 642,250 deliveries in the same quarter last year. 

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The company estimated a total light-vehicle SAAR for Q1 was 14.1M, noticeably down from 16.8M last year; placing understandable blame on lower inventory and production levels. Despite the 20% annual drop in Q1, deliveries were up 16% from Q4; alluding to the easing of supply chains and an increase in production. On this note, Steve Carlisle, Executive Vice President and President of GM North America, commented: 

“Our ability to meet pent-up demand improved dramatically thanks to a tremendous effort by our supply chain and manufacturing teams to keep our plants operating at close to normal levels. Supply chain disruptions are not fully behind us, but we expect to continue outperforming 2021 production levels, especially in the second half of the year,” 

The struggling GM should benefit this year from pent-up demand and the easing of supply disruption, but they certainly have a lot of ground to make up in the EV space if the company wishes to remain a leading US manufacturer.

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