General MotorsGeneral Motors reported Friday that overall vehicle sales in September climbed 10.5% on a year-over-year basis, on strong demand for its new generation of crossover vehicles. Among its four core brands -- Buick, Cadillac, GMC and Chevrolet -- GM sales rose 22% compared to a year ago.

"September's results are a continuation of positive momentum for our four brands and demonstrate that our plan is working," said Don Johnson, vice president of U.S. sales.

The sales results were in-line with analyst expectations, which anticipated a 10.7% rise from September 2009, according to Edmunds.com. Compared to August, sales fell 6.5%, better than the 7.1% decline that Edmunds had forecast.

GM said sales were helped by a quick model-year transition to 2011 models, noting that the change was a "dramatic departure" from last year's changeover. Of GM's retail sales in September, 53% were 2011 model year vehicles-- nearly double last year's 27%. Dealer stock at the end of the month included 75% new model vehicles, compared to just 30% last year.

Sales were driven by strong retail sales, which rose 39% for the month. The company expects that result will outpace the industry, Johnson said during a conference call with investors and the media Friday after sales figures were announced.

The Detroit automaker's remaining four brands have sold nearly 80,000 more units this year than were sold with eight brands through September last year, Johnson said. As part of its post-bankruptcy restructuring GM eliminated or sold off its Pontiac, Hummer, Saab and Saturn brands.

Among its remaining brands, Chevrolet sales rose 18.5% in September compared to a year ago, while those at Cadillac climbed 11.3% and Buick jumped 36.2%. Sales of GMC models gained 41.6%, GM said.

GM also spent less in rebates and other programs designed to boost sales, Johnson said, noting that incentives fell $600 to $3,300 per vehicle in September compared to last year.

Among best sellers for the month were a bevy of so-called crossover vehicles, which combine the attributes of SUVs with car-like handling. Big gainers in the segment included the Chevrolet Equinox, which posted a 70.4% sales rise, while the larger GMC Acadia jumped 62%.

GM was the first out of the gate Friday to report September sales figures. Ford Motor (F), Toyota Motor (TM) and other carmakers will release sales data later in the day.

In related news, GM on Friday closed on its $3.5 billion purchase of AmeriCredit, a provider of subprime auto loans, which will be now known as General Motors Financial.

During Friday's conference call, Johnson said GM will continue to work with Ally Financial, the former GMAC, which finances about a third of GM new-car purchases in the U.S. and Canada.

GM is 61% owned by the federal government as part of the automaker's 2009 government-backed bankruptcy organization. The company emerged from bankruptcy in July 2009 as a much smaller company.

Last month, following two consecutive quarters of profits, the automaker filed paperwork with regulators to once again become a publicly traded company. The first batch of stock is expected to begin selling shortly after the Nov. 2 midterm elections.

At $16 billion, the IPO was at first expected to be the second-largest IPO in U.S. history -- second only to credit-card giant Visa (V). In recent weeks, however, GM officials have sought to tamp down expectations, saying the IPO is likely to raise $8 billion and $10 billion, with shares sold off in chunks rather than one fell swoop.

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richard

Good job, GM, we`re pulling for you! Great new products! Now, if we could get more of these Asian supporters to check out the new GM products, they would possibly buy American again.

October 02 2010 at 12:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
GARY

Great For GM, Got a 09 malibu LTZ great car. I think many people do not realize that GM had a major part in the freedoms Americans have today, there plants were converted to war manufactoring in world war 2, Sherman Tanks, Aircraft, Engines, Ammo. etc. Now when GM is in trouble people turn there backs. Think about how this country would have been divided up between Hitler's German, Italy, and Japan, We would be a slave country to them. Thanks GM and the Men and Women that gave so that we could live free.

October 01 2010 at 3:45 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
icmtodd

They are an American company.Buy American.Help America get back to work.

October 01 2010 at 2:30 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
morgangunnar

How much of this will be used to pay back what they stole from the tax payer?

October 01 2010 at 12:30 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
marine1942

Mr. author---can you tell us how many vehicles were bought, leased by federal gov't ??

October 01 2010 at 11:53 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to marine1942's comment
L R Adams

1942 - Good question* City - State and Government may have stimulated the 10.5 percent jump. Based on some of the information given out over the past 18 months about car and housing sales and economic recovery it is difficult to believe any of it. If it did happen apparently I miss it. Delayed Cadence - Count

October 01 2010 at 5:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply