Sales

Sources: Saturn to Discontinue Vehicle Exchange Program in the New Year

SaturnFans.com has learned from several reliable sources that Saturn will discontinue its Vehicle Exchange Program (VEP) on December 31, 2008 in an effort to cut costs and help create a more profitable business model for the company in the future. The program will reportedly continue to be offered on new Saturn vehicles sold and delivered through the end of the month.

Astra is Gaining Momentum in the Market

Gregory J. Wilcox, columnist from the San Bernardino Sun, recently talked to Saturn spokesman Steve Janisse about the car's sales performance since its launch this past January. The Astra's sales started out around 500 per month, but rose to almost 2000 units last month. "It definitely did get off to a slow start," Janisse told Wilcox. "It's been pretty fun to watch it take off."

Lutz Tells Automotive News that the Poor Currency Exchange Rate is Hurting Saturn Astra Sales

General Motors says the imported Saturn Astra has become a victim of the weak U.S. dollar. The Belgium-built 3- and 5-door hatchbacks, while critically acclaimed, have suffered from slow sales since their North American launch last January. GM vice chairman Bob Lutz bluntly told Automotive News in an article published this morning that "the car is priced too high."

Overall Saturn Sales Down 3.5% in August, While the Vue Skyrockets 46%

Saturn's overall August sales fell 3.5% last month as retailers sold 20,385 vehicles, down from 21,117 in August of '07. Comparatively speaking, thought, the brand more than held its own in a very tough market. GM's overall sales were down 20.3% last month, Ford fell 26.5%, Toyota's were down 9.4%, and even Honda's sales came in 7.3% lower.

Saturn Sales Decline in July Inline with Industry; Aura, Sky, Astra Sales Increased Last Month

Saturn sales were down 13.6% in July, despite higher sales of the brand's newly revitalized and fuel-efficient car lineup. The jump in sales by the Astra, Sky, and Aura, though, wasn't enough to offset the sales gap left by the discontinued Ion sedan and quad coupe. As a result, Saturn's car sales fell 12.7% last month compared to July 2007.

Lajdziak: Saturn Optimistic about Future as Fuel Efficiency Takes Center Stage

Despite all of the negative rumors and predictions in the media, Saturn is upbeat about its future. While no all-new products are currently slated for the brand during the next two years, Saturn should still be well positioned for the future, as its lineup was just completely overhauled from top to bottom.

Saturn Retail Sales Rose 9% in June

Saturn retail sales rose 9% in June, thanks in part to a special zero-percent financing sale that the brand offered during the last week of the month. However, overall sales for the month of June were down 12.8% compared to last year due to the sales gap created by the discontinued Ion sedan and quad coupe.

Certified Used Saturns to be Advertised on Cars.com

Cars.com announced today an expansion of its certified used-vehicle advertising program through a partnership with Saturn. The web site also announced that Infiniti and Subaru will be participating in the program now as well. In-market car buyers searching Cars.com can now access basic listings for the automakers' complete inventory of certified vehicles available nationwide at local dealerships.

NADAguides.com Says Crossover Interest Growing as SUV Interest Declines

The gap in consumer interest between crossover utility vehicles (CUVs) and sport utility vehicles (SUVs) continues to widen, according to a report released by NADAguides.com. The company, a vehicle pricing and information website, says consumer interest in crossovers increased 14.8% in April 2008 compared to April 2007, while SUV interest was down at almost the same rate of 15.9% during that same timeframe.

April 2008 Sales Figures

While Saturn's overall sales were down 15.5% to 16,888 units last month, sales of the brand's Aura midsize sedan and Vue sport-utility saw healthy increases from a year-over-year perspective.

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OnStar "Stolen Vehicle Slowdown" Now Available

OnStar Logo

General Motors and OnStar today launched "Stolen Vehicle Slowdown" on model year 2009 GM vehicles in the US and Canada. Stolen Vehicle Slowdown is the latest enhancement to OnStar's Stolen Vehicle Assistance service and enables OnStar to further help law enforcement in the recovery of subscribers' stolen vehicles, while helping to reduce fatalities and injuries resulting from police chases. Working with law enforcement and utilizing its unique built-in technology, OnStar can remotely send a signal that interacts with the vehicle's engine, gradually slowing it down, aiding in a safe recovery.