General Motors African Operations sold nearly 111,000 vehicles in the first half of 2008 growing total volume by 36 percent over the same time period last year.
Led by a phenomenal 95 percent increase in Egypt and 82 percent growth in North and West Africa, this marks the first time GM African Operations has sold more than 100,000 vehicles in the first six months of a calendar year positioning the region well above pace to reach a historic 200,000 units or more.
“We’re looking for 2008 to be another record-setting sales year for our African Operations,” GM African Operations president Stevan Koch said. “It’s gratifying to see the tremendous growth of our Chevrolet brand throughout the continent.”
Chevrolet sales lead the chargeLed by the strength of Chevrolet’s full line of passenger vehicles, pick-up trucks and light commercial vehicles, 2008 will mark GM’s fifth consecutive year for record sales in Africa. Chevrolet sales increased 77 percent the first half of 2008 versus 2007 while small and mid-size vehicles soared, growing 123 percent.
Leading all vehicle sales growth with a staggering 154 percent increase over last year, the Chevrolet Optra is clearly being recognized by African markets as the ultimate family vehicle. The Optra achieves an average of 7.6 l/100 km and combines peace-of-mind safety features including a collapsible steering column, side impact beams, fog lamps, alarm, automatic engine immobilizer, steering lock, and central locking with modern luxury conveniences like air conditioning, power steering, power windows and a high tech audio system.
Chevrolet presence growing in Africa
“We’ve been building momentum for the last several years in Africa tripling our business between 2002 and 2007,” Koch said. “With a solid first half behind us, we’re well on our way to surpassing the significant milestone of 200,000 unit sales this year.”
Introducing 19 new vehicles into Africa over the course of 2008, GM African Operations is leveraging the company’s global size and scope to give consumers the widest range of purchasing options available.
“GM offers one of the broadest ranges of vehicles throughout Africa including SUVs, off-road and luxury vehicles,” Koch said. “But with the global rise of fuel prices driving consumers to be more energy conscious, GM is in the perfect position to meet this need offering a wide array of more fuel efficient small and mid-size passenger vehicles.”
“Great products are only half of the story,” Koch acknowledges. “To achieve the tremendous growth we’re experiencing, GM partners with an industry-leading distribution network.” Nearly 200 dealers strong in the region with almost 300 points of sale, GM dealers are continuously investing millions on facility upgrades, new showrooms and expanded aftersales service and support to ensure the best vehicle ownership experience for every customer.
“We are on pace to achieve our fifth consecutive year of record sales in Africa,” Koch noted. “With our strong network partnerships and the growing popularity of the Chevrolet brand throughout the continent, I’m very confident we’ll see it happen.”