Seeking Alpha
We cover over 5K calls/quarter
Profile| Send Message|
( followers)  

General Motors Corporation (NYSE:GM)

September 2013 U.S. Vehicle Sales Conference Call

October 1, 2013 11:00 ET

Executives

Jim Cain - Senior Manager, Sales and Executive Communications

Kurt McNeil - U.S. Vice President, Sales

Alan Batey - Senior Vice President, Global Chevrolet Brand Chief & U.S. Sales and Marketing

Don Johnson - Vice President, Chevrolet Sales and Service

Brian Sweeney - Vice President, Buick GMC, Sales and Service

Ed Peper - Vice President, Fleet & Commercial Sales

Sue Yingzi Su - Senior Economist

Analysts

Liz Suzuki - Bank of America/Merrill Lynch

Brian Johnson - Barclays Capital

Colin Langan - UBS

Joe Spak - RBC

Rod Lache - Deutsche Bank

Patrick Archambault - Goldman Sachs

Tom Krisher - Associated Press

Brent Snavely - Detroit Free Press

Nathan Bomey - Detroit Free Press

Mike Colias - Automotive News

Jeff Bennett - Wall Street Journal

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

Operator

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by. Welcome to the General Motors Company September 2013 U.S. Sales Call. During the presentation, all participants will be in a listen-only mode. Afterwards, we’ll conduct a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, this conference is being recorded, Tuesday, October 1, 2013. Your speakers for today are Kurt McNeil and Jim Cain.

I would now like to turn the conference over to Mr. Jim Cain of GM Communications. Please go ahead sir.

Jim Cain

Hi, good morning and welcome to our September sales call everybody. As we always do, we will have introductory remarks from Kurt McNeil, who is our U.S. Vice President of Sales Operations and then we’ll open the lines for Q&A and we have subject matter experts from all of our brands here today as well as Sue Yingzi Su, our North American Economist. And finally, I will just remind everyone that discussion is covered by our disclosures around forward-looking statements. So Kurt, the floor is yours.

Kurt McNeil

Thank you, Jim. Good morning everybody and thank you for joining us. Today, General Motors is announcing September sales of 187,195 vehicles in the United States. Looking exclusively at our retail delivery, sales were down 6% year-over-year. However, they were up 2% when you adjust for too fewer selling days. In an industry context, this means we held our own in terms of retail market share and we did it with incentives that were down about $400 per unit versus the month of August. In fact, the mid-month J.D. Power PIN data shows that GM reduced its incentives more than any other competitor on both in absolute basis and as a percentage of ATP.

Our fleet sales meanwhile were down 27%. That’s a big change, but it’s not entirely unexpected. As you know, a number of factors have been affecting our fleet volumes, including a temporary discontinuation of our midsize pickups and the repositioning of the Chevrolet Impala. Fleet deliveries of the Cruze were also down about 8300 units, which is due to timing of customer deliveries. We think our fleet mix will end up at about 24% for the calendar year. Looking at GM’s total deliveries for the month, we were down 11%, although Buick and Cadillac had sales increases of 6% and 10% respectively. The playmakers were the all new Buick Encore and the Cadillac ATS, XTS, and Escalade. Several Chevrolet car nameplates also performed quite well in September, including the Malibu and Spark. Malibu sales were up 29% and our stocks of 2013 models are coming down very nicely. Sales of the Spark meanwhile were up 6%.

Turning to trucks, our large pickup sales were down about 10% year-over-year and about 3% on a selling day adjusted basis. Let’s dig into this in more detail. First, our GMT900 sell down has been a phenomenal success. We are down to about 20,000 GMT900 light duty pickups in stock. This has helped to ensure our all new model launch is a smooth one. In addition, buzz is really beginning around the new trucks. For example, the Silverado recently ranked at the top of Consumer Reports’ pickup truck comparison test. And as you all know we are still very much in launch mode. Currently our dealers are building their stock levels of regular and double cab trucks and V6 models. The models all began shipping in July and August. But we are now prepared to give you at least a little more color on the subject of truck ATPs and it’s a great story.

Taking all 2013 and 2014 models into account GM’s full-size truck ATPs are up about $3000 per unit year-over-year and they are up about $800 from last month. This reflects an increasing mix of 2014 models and stable incentive spend on the 2013 trucks. As we have said, we are very pleased with our results so far. But we want to underscore for everybody that ATPs are going to remain a moving target, given all the variables. For example, the numbers I shared reflect early sales of new light-duty trucks that were more than 90% V8s, 70% crew cabs and 60% higher end trim series. This mix will moderate over time as the launch progresses. However, there are variables that should be positive for ATPs including the final GMT900 sell down and the pending launch of the new heavy-duty trucks in the first quarter of next year. We will keep you updated, but as far as we are concerned so far so good.

Before we move to Q&A, I want to spend just a minute or two putting our results into a broader context. August had four weekends plus the Labor Day holiday and it was followed by a September with only 23 selling days. All of this goes a long way towards explaining the month-to-month SAAR decline. That’s why it’s important to look at the full quarter for context. Even with lower sales last month, the third quarter was very strong for GM. We delivered almost 560,000 vehicles to retail customers, which is up 13% versus a year ago. By contrast, the retail industry was up about 10%. All four of our brands posted double digit retail sales increases in the quarter. Chevrolet and Buick were up 13%, GMC was up 12% and Cadillac was up 24%. The all-new Impala was one of the many bright spots. Retail deliveries were up 72%in the quarter and up 64% for the month. In addition, Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain had their best ever September on a retail basis. If you pull back even further and look at our calendar year-to-date results, you can see we have strong momentum in nearly all of the industry high volume and high margin segments.

For example, in the premium segments combined sales of Buick and Cadillac cars were up 15%, large pickups were up 20%, sales of our small, mini and compact cars were up a combined 17%. Large SUVs were up 15%, compact crossovers were up 13% and medium crossovers were up 10%. In addition, sales to our small commercial customers were up 37%. This includes a 59% increase in large pickup sales and a 32% increase in large van sales. These numbers really show how new products and a strengthening economy are transforming our showrooms and driving the business.

As we look towards the fourth quarter, we expect that car buying fundamentals will remain strong. For example, a recent drop in jobless claims signals that we should see further acceleration in payrolls. Add to that an accommodative monetary policy, a recovering housing market, low energy prices and rising household wealth and it’s clear that we should be in good shape going forward.

With that said, it’s now time for the Q&A portion of the call. Joining us are Alan Batey, Senior Vice President of Global Chevrolet, a North America Sales, Service and Marketing; Don Johnson, Vice President of Chevrolet Sales and Service; Brian Sweeney, Vice President of Buick GMC, Sales and Service; Ed Peper, Vice President of Fleet & Commercial Sales; and our Senior Economist, Sue Yingzi Su.

Okay, operator, let’s take some questions please.

Question-and-Answer Session

Operator

Thank you. Ladies and gentlemen, we will now proceed with the analyst portion of the question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) And our first question comes from the line of John Murphy at Bank of America/Merrill Lynch. Please proceed with your question.

Liz Suzuki - Bank of America/Merrill Lynch

Good morning. This is Liz Suzuki on for John. Are you seeing any broader weakness in fleet that’s more of an ongoing concern, because it looks like there have been a few months now of big year-over-year declines in fleet, and I am wondering if there is something else going on there besides this timing of deliveries and the discontinuation at Colorado and Canyon?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, it’s definitely for the month of September, it was timing of deliveries I mean 98% of the miss we had in fleet was rental and that is planned. When you take a look at the two months together and combine them last month, we were down less than the market was and had a 30% share of the market. So when you average the two months out, our share is actually slightly above our calendar year-to-date share close to 25%, which is where we want to be. So I would say from my perspective when you got a brand new vehicle like Impala, we have said we are going to have a lot more discipline. We are not going to sell as many into rental vehicle service. We are trying very hard to improve our commercial and government business. We were down 1% in both of those areas last month and we are getting better all the time. And Kurt mentioned small business we were up 36% in small business for the month. So there is a lot of positive things happening. There is a lot of things that happen when customers want vehicles in certain months and this was a classic case when our rental deliveries were down that much for the month.

Liz Suzuki - Bank of America/Merrill Lynch

Okay. Would it be fair to assume that fleet could still be lower year-over-year for the remainder of the year since those vehicle cancellations in repositioning and the Impala will still have an impact?

Kurt McNeil

No, I think for Q4, we will be up in sales. And we are down now about 3% for the calendar year through September and we want to try to get back to even, that’s where we want to be.

Liz Suzuki - Bank of America/Merrill Lynch

Okay, that’s helpful. And I didn’t see a breakout of the full-size truck inventories on the press release this month do you happen to have that on a unit basis and day supply basis?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, Liz, we have not been as we continue to wind down the GMT900. There is about 20,000 in dealer inventory and it’s getting to the point where it’s not – it’s noteworthy and so we pulled it off at the release, but that’s what we are reporting at this point.

Liz Suzuki - Bank of America/Merrill Lynch

Okay, great. And then would you say you were at all inventory constrained on the new trucks that could have potentially curbed sales a bit in September?

Don Johnson

Yes, Don Johnson from Chevrolet. I mean, overall inventory was pretty good. I think we are still getting our mix in line, that’s early as we started to build with the crew cab. We have got good inventory in crew cabs, but we are still building double cab and reg cab inventory, so given those are typically at the lower end of the price range in the market, certainly some constraint there.

Liz Suzuki - Bank of America/Merrill Lynch

Okay, thank you.

Kurt McNeil

Thanks Liz.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Brian Johnson of Barclays Capital. Please proceed with your question.

Brian Johnson - Barclays Capital

Yes, just want to follow-up on that. And I guess to what extent we are on the pickup truck segment, a few things, one what was the old GMT900 versus new K2XX mix for the month? Secondly, your competitors are in sell down on their old model line and year end launch mode on your new product line, how does that kind of affect the kind of market share you are looking for in the market. And then three was the lack of the 5.2 engine, if there is a lack of it at all a factor over the last month it’s frankly all I see here adds for it and it’s a pretty compelling Powertrain?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, Brian I will start. It’s Kurt and then I will hand it over to Don Johnson or Brian Sweeny. K2XX, the new pickup was about 60% of our sales in this month. And you are absolutely correct, obviously that’s compared to 100% of our biggest competitor and their sell down and sales of their ‘13 model truck. So and then I will let Don answer the other part.

Don Johnson

Yes, Brian from a Chevrolet standpoint, as Kurt said you called it we are still on our brand new ‘14 versus the competitors’ real aggressiveness on their ’13. But we are really into the heart of our launch right now really as we get into October. If you have been watching TV at all you know that we are going head to head with the competitors. We have got the strongest truck out there, not just by our view, but certainly when you look at their consumer reports picking it as the top pickups. So we thought we have got a – we have a compelling product offering out there right now. We got great activation at the dealer level. So as we get our cab mix in line and we get our V6, V8 mix in line, I think we are ready to take on all comers. Couple of things written about V8, V6 split, yes, V8s are projected to be about 80% of our mix early on bit of a higher demand given crew cabs for the V8s, but it’s nothing that’s affecting sales right now.

Brian Johnson - Barclays Capital

Okay, thanks.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Colin Langan of UBS. Please proceed with your question.

Colin Langan - UBS

Thank you very much. Can you give color on the Cruze, it was down 50%, I think you said earlier in the call something about 8,300 units were delivered or why the large decline?

Don Johnson

Yes, it’s Don from Chevrolet and couple of things impacting Cruze this month. Certainly on the fleet side its sales – fleet sales were down about 82%, again that some of the timing that Ed Peper was talking about. But you’ll also recall at the beginning of this month when we had the August call, we have recognized that we are low of days supply in the retail side. And that actually caused us to get off to a bit of a slow start in the month. We did pickup momentum throughout the month, but it just wasn’t enough to get back on track, so we were up about 55 days supply retail now. And I think it will be back on track with fleet we will certainly see Cruze get on track for the year. We are up about 8% year-to-date and we expect that trend will continue through the fourth quarter.

Colin Langan - UBS

Okay. And any thoughts on the potential or I guess the government shutdown if that continues through the month, what that might do to SAAR?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, Colin, it’s Kurt. And then I will let Su to make a comment. As long as it’s short-term, we don’t see it impacting our business and our industry. All the other fundamentals are pretty strong when we talk about personal income and household net worth, the employment numbers are pretty positive, oil prices that moderated, the Fed delaying their tapering, so the positives far outweigh the negatives assuming it’s a short – it’s a short event. And Su I think is nodding positively so I think that.

Sue Yingzi Su

Yes, it’s just as Kurt just said we have a lot of a strong fundamental support to further continue to improve the auto sales. It might be helpful for us to review a lot of it the impact from the debt ceiling debate in 2011. And at that time in August 2011, now we had seen pretty bad consumer sentiment drop from July 63.7 to August of 65.8, that’s a big drop, an active impact on consumer sentiment. However, auto sales remained pretty – held up pretty well. It was 12.7 million in July and in August it still went up 12.7 million and the increase was 8% year-over-year. So currently, we see the fundamental of the economy as much stronger than what’s happened in 2011 and consumers have also improved dramatically from the trough in 2011. So that said we think it’s fair to say we should be able to weather the turbulence at this time.

Colin Langan - UBS

Okay, thank you very much. It’s very helpful. Just one quick last question, any color on the daily rental mix in September and versus last year?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, I got it. The mix – Colin, the mix for September rental was 11.8%, calendar year-to-date, it’s 16.6%.

Colin Langan - UBS

Okay, and last year’s September was?

Kurt McNeil

Last year September was 17.0%.

Colin Langan - UBS

Okay, thank you very much.

Kurt McNeil

Thanks Colin.

Operator

(Operator Instructions) And our next question comes from the line of Joe Spak, RBC. Please proceed with your question.

Joe Spak - RBC

Thanks and good afternoon everyone. You called out the impact of Colorado and Canyon on fleet I was just wondering are you finding it difficult to move that historical buyer to the full-size level? Is it just too much truck and is that something that may improve as the V6 availability improves?

Kurt McNeil

I will take that one, Joe, where there are certain companies that like midsize pickups that size vehicle to be able to transport their different things, pest control companies, other places like that. And we are attempting to convert some people. When you look at our commercial business for the pickups, it was actually up last month. It help invite. There are people who do like that size of vehicle and obviously with our coming midsize pickups that’s going to be an important entry for them.

Joe Spak - RBC

Okay, so there maybe a little bit of a pocket there in the interim without the product. And then similarly I have launched a smaller vehicle that maybe sort of historically more of a casual truck, I mean, has there been early success in converting some of those buyers?

Don Johnson

Yes, it’s Don Johnson with Chevrolet. I mean, certainly some of those in tenders are looking at our crew cab very favorably. And in fact some of them are even looking at our new double cab given how much more utility it has. And I think as we get into the full-size SUV next year, that’s also where some of those buyers will go. So I think it’s a little bit of all of that.

Joe Spak - RBC

Okay. And then last one from me, I mean on the Impala and you telegraph that well that you want to make that more of a retail vehicle, is there – are there any stats you can give us on the fleet retail mix maybe this year versus last year?

Don Johnson

Yes, it’s Don again. Just quickly this month as an example, we had retail sales were up 64% and about 45% of those were retail and that compares about 20% last year. So as we continue to ramp it up, we are seeing every single month that retail percentage increase.

Joe Spak - RBC

Okay, that’s in overall right.

Don Johnson

Correct.

Joe Spak - RBC

Okay, thanks a lot. Appreciate it.

Don Johnson

Thanks Joe.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Rod Lache of Deutsche Bank. Please proceed.

Rod Lache - Deutsche Bank

Good morning everybody. Just also on the pickup trucks obviously you pointed to this big increase in average transaction prices, what’s your view on the price sensitivity in the pickup truck market, presumably there is a level of incentives that you can adjust if you wanted to, it would have some impact on your overall market share? And can you talk a little bit about we can see the J.D. Power numbers where it’s incentives down $215 year-over-year, what’s the composition of that if you looked at 2013s and 2014s?

Kurt McNeil

Well, Rod as we continue to roll this out right, we are hesitant to get too caught up in the miniature because of all the different variables that we have going on. The ATP obviously is significantly higher, incentive spend lower, richer mix, but when the selected data we try to share with the selling 90% V8s, 70% crews, 60% high-end trims, it’s hard for us to get too specific on the individual data points, having said that, no question higher ATPs, no question lower incentive spend. And do we have competitors that are selling 100% prior model years and being very aggressive? Absolutely, I mean that incentive data is very compelling, right, but that’s where we stand. We are pretty much on plan. Complete transparency, we did rollout some introductory offers on our full-size pickups this morning, and that’s all to planned that’s very consistent with what we had planned all along, so…

Rod Lache - Deutsche Bank

Could you tell us just remind us what the typical mix would be or what you would expect it to be as things kind of settle down in terms of the crews, the V8s and high-end trim?

Don Johnson

Yes, it’s Don with Chevrolet. I will give you the Silverado numbers. When we look at the cab type percent, we probably see crew cabs settle in around 60%, regular cabs around 10% and double cabs around 30%. That’s generally where we see the cab mix coming in. Interestingly, the higher end trims that we have will probably be in about the 30% range, maybe 25%. And right now, they are running pretty rich largely because of the crew cab, but we are up at about, we are 40% of our higher end trims right now, which is good. It’s helping with ATPs. And in fact our days to turn about 33 days, so I think it’s all typical of beginning, launching the new product like this.

Kurt McNeil

Go ahead, I am sorry.

Don Johnson

Sorry, engines are selling about 10% V6 right now and about 90% V8. But again as we get more double cabs we think that V8 number will definitely come down under 80%. You know one of the things that the dealers are seeing now is they drive to V6 is just one incredible vehicle it is, best-in-class V6 towing, fuel economy. So they are really rediscovering that V6 compared to the old one.

Rod Lache - Deutsche Bank

Great, thank you. And just one last thing, do you have any color on what you see in terms of retail financing rates at this point, obviously we have seen the benchmarks moving around a bit, but is there – has there been any material move there?

Don Johnson

No Rod we don’t, we haven’t seen any significant movement, no.

Rod Lache - Deutsche Bank

Okay. Great, thanks. That’s been real helpful.

Don Johnson

Thank you.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Patrick Archambault of Goldman Sachs. Please proceed with your question.

Patrick Archambault - Goldman Sachs

Yes, thanks. Two questions from my point of view. First of all, just following up on the inventory, I know we have asked this a lot, but it sounds like when you are characterizing if there is inventory constraints that are both in terms of the makeup of the inventory, which isn’t fully balanced out yet as well as being a little bit low and my a) is that the correct way to characterize it as a sort of both factors and b) what’s the ability to makeup for that with higher production in the fourth quarter? That would be my first question. And then I have one follow-up.

Kurt McNeil

Patrick, I think you are referring pickup inventory even though you didn’t clarify that, I think that’s where you are going. And yes like we were saying there is still inventory building on double cabs and regular cabs. And then the V6 versus the V8, I mean if you look at it the double cab significantly better product than the historical extended cab. V6 engine significantly better than previous edition V6s, and so that’s a big issue as that plays out in the marketplace as the dealers understand that and learn to sell that etcetera. So that’s all playing out as we speak. Having said that, we feel good about where we are in our plan. We think we are very much on plan, but to give you a real insight assessment, it’s probably going to be laid into the fourth quarter before all of those different variables really play out.

Patrick Archambault - Goldman Sachs

Okay, thank you. That’s very helpful. And then my final one is just can you guys provide us your estimate of where retail SAAR has come in for this month relative to last month?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, the retail SAAR were at this point approximating at 12.7% in that area. And last month, it was at 13.6%.

Patrick Archambault - Goldman Sachs

Terrific. Thanks a lot guys.

Kurt McNeil

Thank you.

Operator

We will now proceed with the media portion of the question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) And our next question comes from the line of Tom Krisher of Associated Press. Please proceed. Hello, Tom, your line is open. Please proceed with your question.

Tom Krisher - Associated Press

I am sorry, forgot to take my microphone off mute. I had a couple of things. The overall decline, it sounds like you guys are saying that it’s kind of an aberration and that it kind of resets and you will be back to what you had historically been during the year for the fourth quarter? And then I also was wondering, Kurt, you said that if the government shutdown doesn’t last very long, you won’t have much of an impact, but what if it does?

Kurt McNeil

Well, Tom, first of all, yes, I mean there is a lot of factors that went into September being down right. The selling days, the 2 less selling days all that Labor Day business being pulled into August, that’s why we took – try to take a bigger view of the quarter and of the year. And so we still are very bullish and very positive about our results. As far as the decline or the government shutdown, we have no – certainly no crystal ball there. We have some amount of date that the right things will be done and done quickly to resolve all that. Long-term, we would view as a couple of weeks. If the thing drags out a couple of weeks, then it starts as you said it starts to more impact customer sentiment and it starts to have a bigger factor on business, but right now short-term, we still feel better about all the positive other economic factors.

Tom Krisher - Associated Press

Very good. Thank you.

Kurt McNeil

Thank you.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Brent Snavely of Detroit Free Press. Please proceed with your question.

Brent Snavely - Detroit Free Press

Hi. I guess, Tom basically asked exactly what I was going to ask. So one thing I didn’t catch or wanted to ask about is what is now your forecast for the year of expectations for the industry?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, we haven’t changed our official forecast Brent from when we came out and said it was 15 million to 15.5 million. Obviously, you take a look at year-to-date we are at 15.6 million light right now. So we definitely feel that it’s going to be the high end of 15s, but we haven’t formally adjusted our forecast.

Brent Snavely - Detroit Free Press

Okay, thanks.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Nathan Bomey of Detroit Free Press. Please proceed with your question.

Nathan Bomey - Detroit Free Press

Hey guys. Just back to Impala for a second, I am curious as to whether you have set the target date for when you hope to have completed the transition on that vehicle in terms of flipping of the fleet in retail share. I noticed you said for the year up to 45% retail if I am not mistaken, I know you want to get up to 75% at some point. Do you have a target day for that?

Don Johnson

Yes, Nathan, it’s Don Johnson. No, no particular target date. We think as the vehicle continues to grow in acceptance at the retail level and it’s one of the leaders in the full-size segment already at retail that they will find that natural level over the next few months.

Nathan Bomey - Detroit Free Press

Okay. And then also just real quickly Cadillac, I know that earlier this year Bob Ferguson said you were hoping to do 32% or better for the full year and after – last couple of months you have slipped below that do you think you will still hit that target?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, Nathan, it’s Kurt. We feel very good about where we are with Cadillac. You look, year-to-date we were up a total of 29%. It’s always nice to stretch targets out there. And we are going to do everything we can to achieve 35%. But we feel very good about where we are year-over-year. All of our new products have done very well in the marketplace. And we have got so many more exciting ones coming. The new CTS is now shipping and arriving on dealer lots and so we have got just a tremendous products story to tell to you. So we feel very good about where we are.

Nathan Bomey - Detroit Free Press

Okay, thanks.

Kurt McNeil

Yes.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Mike Colias of Automotive News. Please proceed with your question.

Mike Colias - Automotive News

Thanks. A question for Don or Alan on Chevrolet, do you guys – did you think there was any pull ahead effect from some of the dealer sales incentives that were in place this summer?

Don Johnson

Yes, it’s Don Johnson. I don’t think there is any pull ahead because of incentives. I think as we have talked about earlier there was some retiming simply between September and August that affected the whole industry.

Mike Colias - Automotive News

Okay. And another one on Impala was there any interruption in production of what you guys have called the Impala Limited the fleet model or has that continued to sell and is the plan to sell that for a full 2014 model year?

Don Johnson

No significant interruption and the plan is to continue to sell that for a little while yet.

Mike Colias - Automotive News

Okay, thanks.

Don Johnson

Thanks Mike.

Operator

Our next question comes from the line of Jeff Bennett of Wall Street Journal. Please proceed.

Jeff Bennett - Wall Street Journal

Good morning guys. Thanks very much. I know that you had said that the discounting offered by Ford and Ram is kind of pulling more customers their way. I am wondering when do you think that’s going to kind of ebb for you guys and that, that won’t impact your sales, Ford probably isn’t going to – is probably going to introduce a new pickup as you know probably next year, so that they could continue to discount for a quite sometime?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, Jeff, it’s Kurt. We didn’t mention any of our competitors by name, but having said that it’s very clear that we took a very disciplined approach to the marketplace with our incentives down $400. And no one was closed to us from an incentive reduction standpoint and an ATP increase standpoint, so we definitely took a different tack. And if you look across a majority of the segments, there are some pretty significant differences across all of them. And yet, having taken that different approach we still were able to hold retail share. So I can’t comment on what they planned to do or not do, we are going to work our plan. We feel very good about our plan and so that I guess is what I would say.

Jeff Bennett - Wall Street Journal

But it sounds like you are going to be alright with sacrificing I guess the amount sold as long as you are getting those higher ATPs?

Kurt McNeil

No, we are never – well, first of all we are never satisfied Jeff. We want obviously to continue to grow our sales and our share. And that’s part of the reason I brought up the third quarter for us being up 13% retail, industry is only up 10%, all of our channels up double-digits. I mean, we work on that everyday. So we are not going to give up share, but at the same time, when we are announcing brand new – introducing brand new products, we are not going to get off our game, we are going to continue to work our plan and introduce them in the right way. The accolades have been tremendous across all of our new products. And Don I think mentioned the Consumer Reports being named the top pickup in that comparison task was just another example of bringing a new exciting product to market. So we are going to work our plans.

Jeff Bennett - Wall Street Journal

And just lastly Alan, are we going to see kind of the big push now advertising on these trucks, I know that it has been out, it started in Texas in that, but is October-November really when you kind of put the advertising power behind them?

Alan Batey

Yes, hi Jeff. Yes is the answer. We have got really good light both against GMC and Chevrolet. And yes, we will continue to drive awareness and continue to focus out the features of our new trucks. So yes, you will see a lot of weight in the coming months.

Jeff Bennett - Wall Street Journal

Okay, thanks.

Kurt McNeil

Thanks Jeff.

Operator

And we have time for one more question from the line of Melissa Burton of Detroit News. Please proceed with your question.

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

Hi, thank you. I am just wondering can you kind of give us an idea of what your total full-size pickup truck inventory is like?

Kurt McNeil

Melissa, we have not been releasing our inventory on our new and old pickups. Like I said a lot of moving variables, we did say that our GMT900s were down to 20,000 units and that’s currently where we stand.

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

Okay, I heard and believe it was John, you gave an example of one of the trucks being 33 days to turn, was that the full-size, the new pickups or what was that?

Kurt McNeil

Yes, that was the new pickups.

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

Okay. And then can you guys describe a little bit to the new incentives that you mentioned or the new offers on the full-size pickups and it sounded like that began today?

Don Johnson

Yes, Don from Chevrolet. Really we have got a broad-based group of incentives as part of our introduction of the new pickup. We are leveraging the great residual we have. So we have got competitive leasing out there. We have actually got a trade-in allowance, which I think taken very well with what we are trying to do. So it’s really broad-based across all types of incentives.

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

And this is – is this something it’s more significant though than what you had led this past month?

Don Johnson

Well, I would call it an evolutionary step in the launch of our pickup.

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

Okay. And I am sure I can find more information online about that.

Don Johnson

Yes.

Melissa Burton - Detroit News

Okay, alright. Thank you.

Kurt McNeil

Thank you, Melissa.

Operator

And Mr. Cain, there are no further questions at this time. I will now turn the call back to you. Please continue with the presentation or closing remarks.

Jim Cain

Well, I will just end by thanking everyone for joining us. And if you have any follow-up questions, I will be in the office all day available by phone or e-mail. Thank you.

Operator

Ladies and gentlemen, that concludes the conference call for today. We thank you for your participation and ask that you please disconnect your lines.

Copyright policy: All transcripts on this site are the copyright of Seeking Alpha. However, we view them as an important resource for bloggers and journalists, and are excited to contribute to the democratization of financial information on the Internet. (Until now investors have had to pay thousands of dollars in subscription fees for transcripts.) So our reproduction policy is as follows: You may quote up to 400 words of any transcript on the condition that you attribute the transcript to Seeking Alpha and either link to the original transcript or to www.SeekingAlpha.com. All other use is prohibited.

THE INFORMATION CONTAINED HERE IS A TEXTUAL REPRESENTATION OF THE APPLICABLE COMPANY'S CONFERENCE CALL, CONFERENCE PRESENTATION OR OTHER AUDIO PRESENTATION, AND WHILE EFFORTS ARE MADE TO PROVIDE AN ACCURATE TRANSCRIPTION, THERE MAY BE MATERIAL ERRORS, OMISSIONS, OR INACCURACIES IN THE REPORTING OF THE SUBSTANCE OF THE AUDIO PRESENTATIONS. IN NO WAY DOES SEEKING ALPHA ASSUME ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY INVESTMENT OR OTHER DECISIONS MADE BASED UPON THE INFORMATION PROVIDED ON THIS WEB SITE OR IN ANY TRANSCRIPT. USERS ARE ADVISED TO REVIEW THE APPLICABLE COMPANY'S AUDIO PRESENTATION ITSELF AND THE APPLICABLE COMPANY'S SEC FILINGS BEFORE MAKING ANY INVESTMENT OR OTHER DECISIONS.

If you have any additional questions about our online transcripts, please contact us at: transcripts@seekingalpha.com. Thank you!

Source: General Motors' Management Discusses September 2013 U.S. Vehicle Sales Conference Call (Transcript)
This Transcript
All Transcripts