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 |  Sep 04 2013, 12:37 PM

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Could the devastating “Great Recession” finally be fading in the rear-view mirror? GM’s August sales performance seems to indicate yes.

The company delivered 275,847 vehicles in the United States last month. That represents a 15 percent increase compared to the same period last year. Additionally, retails sales were up 22 percent while deliveries to fleets actually dropped by 8 percent.

Kurt McNeil, vice president of the company’s U.S. sales operations said “August was (GM’s) best sales month since September 2008,” which was the same time Lehman Brothers collapsed and the financial crisis hit with full force.

All four of GM’s brands saw their total deliveries increase by double-digit figures. Cadillac led the field with a 38 percent jump. August was the wreath-and-crest brand’s best retail month since August of 1989!

Buick was nipping at Caddy’s mud flaps, posting a 37 percent increase. GMC retail sales rose by 14 percent while Chevrolet was up 10 percent.

Helping increase the company’s bottom line “Incentives were down slightly from July” McNeil said. This factor along with reduced fleet sales should lead to greater profits for GM.

The Chevy Cruze has been a highly successful product for the company. Since its introduction in 2010 GM has delivered more than 677,000 of them in the U.S. And they’re replicating that small-car success with products like the Spark and Sonic. Both nameplates posted impressive sales gains compared to August 2012.

The company’s redesigned light-duty pickup trucks are doing well in the market. The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra rollout is going smoothly; all three light-duty body styles are in production today. The range-topping 6.2-liter V8 is expected to launch this fall.

According to McNeil today’s success directly stems from investments made during the dark days of the financial crisis.

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