6 Years of Topless Fun: Cadillac XLR 2004-2009

Introduced in 2004, the Cadillac XLR Experimental Luxury Roadster was a new take on the personal luxury Cadillac in the tradition of the Cadillac Eldorado.   The Cadillac XLR was based on the Corvette C6 chassis, with a Cadillac Northstar engine making 320 hp.  The XLR was produced at the Corvette factory at Bowling Green, Kentucky on a dedicated assembly line.

2009 Cadillac XLR

A key feature of the XLR is that it came with a retractable hard top.  Compared to soft-top convertibles, a retractable hardtop is quieter with the top up, more secure and more visually pleasing.  Highly automated, the top folded up into the trunk.  Early owners experienced some difficulties with the operation of the roof, which depended on the ongoing alignment of the retraction mechanism and sensors.  Fewer reports were received for later years.  My impression is that with some attention this would be a non-issue.

In 2006, the XLR-V performance model joined the base model, sporting the LC3 Supercharged Northstar, making 443 hp.

In 2007 the XLR gained the new 6-speed automatic to replace the 5-speed automatic.

Cadillac offered several different types of special,  limited edition XLRs.  The limited edition 2004 Neiman Marcus Cadillac XLR retailed for $85,000 and was only available for purchase through the 2003 Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog. When Neiman Marcus opened bidding for this featured item on October 15, 2002 the XLR sold out in 14 minutes, setting a record for any fantasy gift vehicle Neiman Marcus ever showcased in its annual Christmas Book.  Cadillac produced 101 examples.  2 were raffled off, and 99 sold via the Neiman Marcus Catalog.

The Platinum Edition was available from 2007-2009.  The Alpine White Limited Edition was available in 2008. The Passion Red Special Edition was available in 2007.

By 2009 sales of the XLR had flagged, and the XLR quietly was discontinued beginning in 2010.

Overall the Cadillac XLR is a very interesting vehicle.  It offers excellent handling, and in the XLR-V form good acceleration.  It offers features not available in the Corvette in terms of luxury, but shares the same compromises as a 2-seater.

Changes by year:

New for 2009

  • XLR lineup devoted to ultra luxury and performance: XLR Platinum and XLR-V models only
  • New front fascia for all models, with specific upper and lower grilles for Platinum and V-Series
  • New rear fascia and fender vents for all models
  • New front fender vents
  • Three new regular-production exterior colors: Black Cherry, Gray Flannel and Radiant Silver
  • New 18-inch wheel design (Platinum only)
  • Alcantara™ headliner material now on XLR-V
  • Leather-wrapped upper instrument panel
  • Interior trim revisions
  • Next-generation OnStar 8.0 with Destination Download with eNav and Bluetooth connectivity

New for 2008

  • Alpine White Limited Edition Model with chrome grille and chrome 18-inch wheels
  • Improved Magnetic Ride Control system, revising shock damping for enhanced ride and handling traits
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Optional 18-inch chrome wheels on XLR
  • Optional 19-inch chrome wheels on XLR-V
  • Elektra Blue, Crystal Red and Goldstream exterior finishes replace Gold Mist, Xenon Blue and Infrared
  • Expanded color choices for Platinum Edition model
  • XLR-V adds Elektra Blue exterior finish

New for 2007

  • Ultra-luxury Platinum model
  • Passion Red Special Edition model
  • Six-speed automatic transmission replaces 5-speed
  • Redesigned key fob
  • Generation 7 OnStar
  • Red Passion exterior color replaces Blue Steel
  • Cashmere interior trim replaces Shale

New for 2006

  • Cadillac’s first application of Adaptive Forward Lighting
  • XM Satellite Radio with hidden antenna standard equipment
  • Redesigned wood treatment on center stack around CD opening and HVAC
  • Gold Mist and Infrared exterior paint colors replace Satin Nickel and Crimson Pearl
  • XLR-V arrives

XLR-V: The 2006 Cadillac XLR-V ultra-luxury, high-performance roadster sets new standards in power, performance and personal amenities, combining distinctive, bold styling with contemporary luxury, ingenious technology and rear-wheel drive performance.

At the heart of the XLR-V is the new, 4.4L version of the Northstar engine outfitted with a positive displacement intercooled supercharger. The Northstar V-8 SC (supercharged), which also powers the STS-V, produces 443 horsepower (330 kw) at 6400 rpm and 414 lb.-ft. (561 Nm) torque at 3900 rpm (SAE certified*). The engine’s power is underscored by its ability to deliver 90 percent of its peak torque between 2200 and 6000 rpm. The engine also features variable valve timing, enabling outstanding top-end performance while maintaining the refinement and quality associated with a luxury marque. The engine is mated to the all-new Hydra-Matic 6L80 six-speed automatic transmission.

The 6L80 is one of the most technologically advanced automatic transmissions in the industry, using clutch-to-clutch operation and an advanced integrated 32-bit transmission controller to deliver smooth, precise shifts. In addition, a wide 6.04:1 overall ratio spread enhances performance and fuel economy.

The 6L80 also incorporates a host of advanced driving enhancement features, including advanced Performance Algorithm Shifting (PAS), Performance Algorithm Liftfoot (PAL), and Driver Shift Control (DSC).

Chassis modifications on the XLR-V include larger brakes; recalibrated Magnetic Ride Control (MR); larger front stabilizer bar and the addition of a rear stabilizer bar; stiffer rear lower control arm bushings; larger wheels and tires; a power steering fluid cooler; and a higher-capacity fuel pump.

XLR-V styling modifications impart a bolder character in keeping with its performance capabilities, yet retain an aura of refined elegance. Design refinements include:

    • Polished wire mesh upper and lower front grilles, a V-Series signature
    • Aggressively sculpted hood that makes room for the supercharger
    • New 10-spoke aluminum wheel design with sterling silver finish
    • Unique V-Series and Supercharged badging
    • Four polished stainless steel exhaust tips
    • Black finish brake calipers with machined V-Series logo
    • Three exterior color offerings: Infra Red, Black Raven and Light Platinum
    • Zingana Wood on the shifter knob, cup holder area, steering wheel, and on portions of the door and center console
    • Ebony leather with French stitching on interior components
    • Soft, supple leather seats with French stitching and matching perforated suede fabric inserts
    • Aluminum accent pieces throughout the interior

Like XLR, the XLR-V will be built at GM’s state-of-the-art, award-winning Bowling Green assembly center.

New for 2005

  • Light or Dark Eucalyptus wood interior
  • Blue Steel exterior paint replaces Thunder Gray


Replete with a dynamic design, advanced technology and a unique blend of luxury and performance, the Cadillac XLR brings a striking new presence to the elite luxury roadster class. The vehicle underscores its vibrant visual statement with a performance-oriented chassis and structure, and an all-new 4.6L Northstar V-8 VVT (variable valve timing) rear-wheel-drive engine. This combination makes it the lightest, most powerful vehicle in its class.

“XLR is a luxury roadster with performance car roots,” said Jay Spenchian, XLR marketing director. “Beneath its stunning exterior style, XLR has a patented performance car architecture that is ideal for a roadster and serves as a strong foundation for a car designed for great agility and bona fide luxury.”

Under its skin, the XLR offers a harmonious blend of technologies and materials meant to add pleasure, not complexity, to the driving experience. Innovative features include a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, Magnetic Ride Control, StabiliTrak, heated and cooled seats, keyless access with push-button start and DVD navigation and entertainment. XLR appears at dealerships in summer 2003.

Edgy design
The XLR is a contemporary expression of Cadillac’s heritage of landmark design and advanced technology. Inspired by stealth fighter design, XLR takes the ongoing product-driven resurgence of Cadillac – led by the Escalade SUV and CTS sedan – to an entirely new level.

Bold and edgy, yet elegant and refined, the XLR’s linear, crisp design creates a dramatic presence and modern icon for luxury and performance. Yet it still pays tribute to the marque’s rich history. The XLR’s strong grille, for example, harkens back to Cadillac’s heritage but expresses itself in a new way. The vertical headlamps, on the other hand, express the division’s current design philosophy.

The XLR offers the ultimate convenience of a retractable hard top. Compared to soft-top convertibles, a retractable hardtop is quieter with the top up, more secure and more visually pleasing. Car Top Systems (CTS) GmbH of Germany, the renowned designer of many of the world’s top-rated convertibles, developed the XLR top. By pushing and holding a single button, the XLR can convert from coupe to open roadster in less than 30 seconds.

The top assembly for the XLR is installed as a complete module, and contributes to the car’s overall structural rigidity. The top structure is made of aluminum and magnesium with composite exterior panels, a heated glass backlight and glass rear-quarter windows.

The XLR’s interior design epitomizes contemporary luxury. Unique eucalyptus wood and striking aluminum accents combine to provide a luxurious and inviting environment. The gauges are designed in conjunction with Italian luxury brand Bvlgari.

The XLR’s Northstar V-8 VVT is a 90-degree, DOHC, four-valves-per-cylinder engine featuring an aluminum block and cylinder heads, and a valvetrain configuration with roller finger followers. The engine has been extensively re-engineered for the luxury roadster, and it marks the Northstar’s first adaptation to rear-wheel-drive (RWD) and all-wheel-drive (AWD) configurations.
Other Northstar firsts on the XLR include four-cam continuously variable valve timing (VVT); electronically controlled, hydraulically actuated intake and exhaust cam phasers on all four camshafts for extra control; electronic throttle control (ETC); low restriction intake and exhaust manifolds and cylinder head ports; close coupled catalytic converters mounted directly adjacent to the exhaust manifolds; and a new air induction system, redesigned for enhanced capacity and noise attenuation. It also has a more powerful engine control module (ECM) and high-speed local area network (LAN) communication system dedicated to engine and transmission control, a new engine-mounting system and more rigid block structure for outstanding operating smoothness and quietness.

The V-8 offers smooth, refined performance throughout its entire operating range. It is quiet, yet tuned to give the driver feedback from the environment. It operates even more cleanly and efficiently than its predecessors, with excellent reliability and durability. The XLR features the first longitudinal application of the 4.6L Northstar V-8.

The V-8 is mated to the Hydra-Matic 5L50-E five-speed automatic transmission. Developed to manage the high torque and horsepower of the engine, it is one of the most technologically advanced transmissions on any highway or autobahn in the industry. The 5L50-E transmission is a modification of the Hydra-Matic 5L40-E transmission used in Cadillac CTS. It offers three performance features normally found individually on various high-performance American and European luxury sport sedans: driver shift control, performance algorithm shifting and performance algorithm liftfoot.

Another advantage of Cadillac’s roadster not shared by the competition is its rear-mounted transmission. This helps give the XLR a virtual 50/50 front-to-rear weight distribution for superior balance, as well as providing occupants unusually roomy footwell space.
Compared to the Mercedes-Benz SL500, Jaguar XK8 and Lexus SC430, the XLR is not only the lightest vehicle at approximately 3,650 pounds (1,656 kg), but it also boasts the longest wheelbase, widest track, lowest height and most horsepower.

Architecture and suspension
The story starts with the XLR’s backbone, upon which the car’s dynamic capabilities depend. Based on GM’s new performance car architecture, this unique and patented structure comprises steel hydroformed perimeter frame rails, enclosed structural “tunnel,” aluminum cockpit structure and balsa-cored composite floors. Providing rigidity without bulk, and with exceptional resistance to torsional and bending forces, this architecture is the basis for the XLR’s outstanding ride and handling characteristics.

The suspension system makes the XLR a true luxury roadster with the handling qualities of a performance car. To this end, the design uses double wishbones at each corner, combined with transverse-mounted, composite leaf springs front and rear. The system is designed to maintain firm control over wheel motion, while delivering a composed and compliant ride quality. During normal driving, the chassis exhibits comfortable and confident handling characteristics; when pushed harder, the car remains stable and secure with outstanding road holding. The XLR achieves a maximum lateral G-force of more than 0.9. The XLR runs on Michelin ZP tires with advanced “run flat” technology that eliminates the need for a spare and provides outstanding overall tire performance.

Magnetic Ride Control
The XLR also is one of the world’s first vehicles to be equipped with Magnetic Ride Control – electronically controlled, magnetic-fluid based real-time damping. The system uses four wheel-to-body displacement sensors to measure wheel motion over the road surface and responds by adjusting the shock damping at speeds approaching one millisecond. That’s five times faster than previous “real time” damping systems. The secret is the magneto-rheological fluid contained in its dampers, replacing traditional mechanical valves. Suspended in this fluid are tiny iron particles that respond to an electromagnetic charge.

In the presence of a charge, the iron particles align themselves into fibrous structures that almost instantaneously create precise and wide-ranging damping characteristics. With sensors reading the road surface at a rate of 1 inch at 60 mph (25.4 mm at 97 km/h), the system responds by commanding constant changes in damping force at all four corners. The goal is to maintain tire contact with the road surface and to keep the body on an even plane, with smooth, well-controlled body motions even during aggressive maneuvers or on uneven road surfaces.

Adaptive cruise control
The XLR will be among the first vehicles with adaptive cruise control (ACC). While not a substitute for full driver attention, this system greatly expands the convenience of cruise control. ACC uses a radar sensor mounted at the front of the car to detect objects in its path. If the lane ahead is clear, the system will maintain the set speed, just like conventional cruise control. When a vehicle is detected in the same lane in front of the car, the system will adjust vehicle speed to help maintain a constant following distance, set by the driver.

If a vehicle or object in the path of the car is stationary or moving at significantly slower speed, the system provides visible and audible alerts to the driver. ACC is set by a conventional stalk-mounted control but is monitored through a graphic representation in the head-up display.

Comfort and convenience
One of the XLR’s foremost convenience features is Keyless Access. Keyless Access makes XLR a truly “keyless” car. A driver can simply keep the fob in a pocket or purse to operate the doors, trunk and ignition. The fob communicates with the XLR’s computer control system via radio antennas under the car’s bodywork. The system is intuitive and hassle free.

The doors are opened by touching a pad located in openings at the rearward edges of each door. Once the pad is pressed, the doors unlock and open if the fob is within a 1-meter radius. To operate the ignition the driver presses a button on the instrument panel. The same button is pressed to stop the engine. As a safety feature the engine will not start unless the fob is in the car and the brake pedal is depressed.

The XLR’s seats are both heated and cooled in the back and the cushion. A 7-inch color touch screen mounted in the upper center console gives driver and passenger access to DVD navigation; a nine-speaker world-class Bose audio system with a six-CD in-dash changer and digital signal processing modes; XM Satellite Radio (continental U.S. only) and DVD entertainment (available in Park position only). The XLR also is equipped with OnStar and a head-up display that projects key driver information onto the windshield. The XLR traces its roots to the Evoq concept car. Cadillac stunned the automotive world with the audacious Evoq, unveiled at the 1999 North American International Auto Show. The XLR began production in spring 2003 on a dedicated assembly line at General Motors’ Bowling Green Assembly Plant in Bowling Green, Ky. Shipments to Cadillac dealers are slated to begin by mid-year 2003.

Overview2009 Models:

Model: Cadillac XLR Platinum and XLR-V luxury roadsters
Body style / driveline: XLR Platinum: 2-door hardtop convertible with rear-wheel drive
XLR-V: 2-door high-performance hardtop convertible with rear-wheel drive
Construction: hydroformed perimeter frame, structural center tunnel, aluminum cockpit frame
Manufacturing location: Bowling Green, Ky.
Key competitors: XLR Platinum: Mercedes-Benz SL500, Lexus SC 430, Jaguar Xk8
XLR-V: Mercedes Benz SL 55 AMG Roadster, Lexus SC Convertible, Jaguar XKR Convertible


Type: Northstar 4.6L V-8 VVT (variable valve timing) Northstar V-8 SC
(supercharged 4.4L DOHC V-8)
Application: XLR Platinum XLR-V
Displacement 279 / 4565 267 / 4371
Bore & stroke (in / mm): 3.66 x 3.31 / 93 x 84 3.58 x 3.31 / 91 x 84
Block material: cast aluminum upper – sand-cast 319 T7 aluminum
lower – die-cast aluminum
Cylinder head material: cast aluminum 319 T7 semi-permanent mold cast aluminum alloy
Crankshaft material: forged steel cast nodular iron
Valvetrain: DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder, four-cam continuously variable valve timing roller follower DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder, variable valve timing
Ignition system: coil-on-plug ignition, with extended-life dual platinum-tipped spark plugs coil-on-plug with extended-life dual platinum-tipped spark plugs
Fuel system: sequential electronic fuel injection returnless, electronic sequential fuel injection
Compression ratio: 10.5:1 9.0:1
Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm): 320 / 239 @ 6400 443 / 330 @ 6400 rpm (SAE certified)*
Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm): 310 / 420 @ 4400 414 / 561 @ 3900 rpm (SAE certified)* 90 percent of peak torque available between 2200 and 6000 rpm
Recommended fuel: premium recommended but not required premium required
Max. engine speed (rpm): 6750 6700
EPA estimated fuel economy
(city / hwy):
15 / 24 14 / 21


Type: Hydra-Matic 6L80 six-speed, electronically controlled automatic
Application: XLR, XLR-V
Gear ratios:
First: 4.03:1
Second: 2.36
Third: 1.53
Fourth: 1.15
Fifth: 0.85
Sixth: 0.67
Reverse: 3.06
Final drive: 2.56
Max. shift speed (rpm): 6500


Front: short/long arm ( SLA) double wishbone, cast aluminum upper and lower control arms, transverse-mounted composite leaf spring, Magnetic Ride Control
Rear: short/long arm ( SLA) double wishbone, cast aluminum upper and lower control arms, transverse-mounted composite leaf spring, Magnetic Ride Control
Traction control system: full-range
Stabilizer bar: front: hollow, 28.6 mm x 4.5 mm wall thickness

rear: hollow, 23.6 mm x 3.5 mm wall thickness

Steering ratio: 17.2:1
Steering type: Magnasteer power-assisted rack-and-pinion
Steering wheel turns, lock-to-lock: 2.9
Turning circle, curb-to-curb (ft / m): 39 / 11.9


Type: XLR: power-assisted disc with 4-channel ABS, front and rear

XLR-V: heavy-duty with cross-drilled rotors and high-performance brake linings, dual-piston front calipers and single-piston rear calipers. Power-assist with 4-channel ABS front and rear.

Rotor diameter x thickness (in / mm): XLR: front: 12.8 x 1.3 / 325 x 32; rear: 12.0 x 1.0 / 305 x 26
XLR-V: front: 13.4 x 1.3 / 340.4 x 32; rear: 13 x 1 / 330.2 x 26


Wheel size and type: XLR: std: spun-cast painted aluminum, 18-inch x 8-inch; opt: chrome, 18-inch x 8-inch
XLR-V: std: painted aluminum, 19-inch x 8.5-inch; opt: chrome, 19-inch x 8.5-inch
Tires: XLR: P235/50R18 – Goodyear EMT Run Flat
XLR-V: P235/45R19 – Pirelli Run Flat


Length (in / mm): 177.7 / 4513
Width (in / mm): 72.3 / 1836
Height (in / mm): 50.4 / 1279
Wheelbase (in / mm): 105.7 / 2685
Track (in / mm): XLR – 61.6 / 1564 (front); 62.1 / 1578 (rear)
XLR-V – 62.2 / 1580 (front); 62.2 / 1580 (rear)


Seating capacity (front / rear): 2 / 0
Headroom (in / mm): 37.6 / 955
Legroom (in / mm): 42.6 / 1083
Shoulder room (in / mm): 54.3 / 1380
Hip room (in / mm): 53 / 1346


Cargo volume (cu ft / L):
Top up: 11.6 / 328
Top down: 4.4 / 125
Fuel tank: (gal / L): 18 / 68.1
Engine oil (qt / L): 8 / 7.5
Curb weight (lb / kg) estimated: 3804 / 1726

Experimental Touring Sedan?

The Canadian National Post reports that the GM plant in Oshawa is slated to build the new Cadillac XTS sedan.   The XTS is the notional large sedan that will replace the current FWD DTS and RWD STS models with a single highly desirable luxury sedan.

Cadillac went to 3-letter “Euro” names with the CTS/DTS/STS swap.  The names don’t “mean” anything, or do mean things, depending on the day and press release.  For example, CTS means “C-class Touring Sedan”, the C-class Mercedes being the size and competitive range the CTS is aimed at.

The convertible XLR is ‘eXperimental Luxury Roadster’, here using experimental in the ‘has the latest technology’ and not ‘it might blow up’ sense.

So, the new XTS would be an  ‘eXperimenal Touring Sedan’.  Cadillacs have often been GM’s pilot brand for new technologies.  It makes sense to add the very latest options to the premium brand, where customers are willing to pay for premium equipment.  It also allows the manufacturer to prove out technologies on shorter production runs, then release them to higher production models to follow.

I suppose I don’t object to the experimental moniker as long as the sedan that bears the name is experimental, and has some ‘reach’ to it.

GM sales down, but share of US Market up

GM Reports 284,300 Deliveries in September; Highest Monthly Market Share of 2008

  • Chevrolet Malibu retail sales up 192 percent; Pontiac Vibe up 61 percent compared with last September
  • Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia and Saturn Outlook crossover total sales up 10 percent; first 226 Chevrolet Traverse sales recorded
  • 72,500 Chevrolet Silverado, Avalanche and GMC Sierra pickups sold; beats industry trend as segment-leading vehicles grab market share
  • GM’s market share estimated at 27 percent, marks second consecutive month of market share gains
  • Total Q3 sales up 4 percent compared with Q2, with market share improving by more than 3 percentage points

DETROIT – General Motors dealers in the United States delivered 284,300 vehicles in September, giving GM its best monthly share so far in 2008. GM’s share improvement was led by continued strong performances in the mid-car, crossover and full size truck segments. The GM Employee Discount for Everyone sale built awareness for the company’s outstanding lineup and offered compelling values to customers. GM’s brands are having divisional sales events this month to keep the marketplace momentum building.

A strong lineup of new products, combined with sales and marketing programs geared toward a particularly challenging market, helped GM outpace major competitors this month. GM total September sales were down 16 percent compared to an industry decline anticipated to exceed 20 percent. Of note, GM total third quarter 2008 sales of 828,000 vehicles were 4 percent higher than second quarter sales of 799,000 vehicles and 3 percent higher than first quarter sales of 806,000.

“September marked the second consecutive month where GM performed extremely well in tough market conditions,” said Mark LaNeve, vice president, GM North America Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing. “We again gained retail share and our total market share looks to be above 27 percent for the month without an increase in incentives.

“In a market where customers are cautious and seeking value, more and more are choosing a fuel efficient, award-winning GM product,” LaNeve added. “Comparing Q3 to Q2, we also saw a lot of positives. Volume was up 4 percent with retail trucks improving 23 percent. Of note were our full-size pickups that jumped 30 percent compared with Q2. Importantly, market share improved more than 3 percentage points quarter-to-quarter.”

GM launch products continued to build momentum in September and throughout the quarter.

“We saw great performance in our launch products – Malibu was up nearly 200 percent – and we’re very excited to have the first deliveries of the Chevrolet Traverse mid-utility crossover,” LaNeve said. “We’re also seeing some renewed demand for pickups and anticipate that our divisional sales programs this month will help fuel the market. Sales of the GMC Sierra were up last month. Our mid-car segment vehicle sales were up 23 percent in September. We saw the Chevrolet HHR gain 14 percent. Pontiac saw gains with the Vibe and G5 while Saturn saw increased sales for the Vue and Outlook. ”

The success of GM’s product lineup, combined with a compelling value offer, helped the company mitigate the industry challenges as total GM car sales declined just 9.8 percent, while trucks (excluding crossovers) declined 22 percent when compared with a year ago.

GM’s popular mid-utility crossovers – Chevrolet Traverse, Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia and Saturn Outlook — together accounted for more than 14,000 vehicle sales in the month. The first new Chevrolet Traverse crossovers were sold in September, marking the start of deliveries for the fourth vehicle in GM’s industry-leading mid-utility crossover lineup.

For the month, a total of 1,957 hybrid vehicles were delivered as GM hybrids continue to gain in popularity in the marketplace. GM’s hybrid sales for September included: 636 hybrid Chevrolet Tahoe, 374 GMC Yukon and 91 Cadillac Escalade

2-mode SUVs delivered. There were 382 Chevrolet Malibu, 31 Saturn Aura and 443 Vue hybrids sold in September. GM has sold 9,053 hybrids so far in 2008.

“Customers are responding to our hybrid vehicles – cutting-edge cars and trucks that provide industry-leading value, great fuel economy and the best warranty coverage of any full-line automaker,” LaNeve noted. “The public reveal of the production version of the Chevrolet Volt E-REV as the highlight of our GMnext celebration last month showcases GM’s leadership in advanced propulsion technology and fuel efficiency.”

With its solid sales performances the past two months, GM has aggressively managed inventories to historically low levels. In September, only about 717,000 vehicles were in stock – the lowest September in a decade – down about 179,000 vehicles (or about 20 percent) compared with last September. There were about 275,000 cars and 442,000 trucks (including crossovers) in inventory at the end of September.

Certified Used Vehicles

September 2008 sales for all certified GM brands, including GM Certified Used Vehicles, Cadillac Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles, Saturn Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles, Saab Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles, and HUMMER Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles, were 35,341 vehicles, down 13 percent from September 2007. Year-to-date sales are 374,716 vehicles, down 6 percent from the same period last year.

GM Certified Used Vehicles, the industry’s top-selling certified brand, posted September sales of 30,375 vehicles, down 16 percent from September 2007. Saturn Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles sold 817 vehicles, down 7 percent. Cadillac Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles sold 3,269 vehicles, up 8 percent. Saab Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles sold 687 vehicles, up 22 percent, and HUMMER Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles sold 193 vehicles, up 41 percent.

“Our Cadillac, Saab and HUMMER Certified Pre-Owned programs each achieved strong sales increases in September, while GM Certified Used Vehicles again sets the sales pace for all OEM certified pre-owned programs,” said LaNeve. “In September GM Certified Used Vehicles, which includes Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Pontiac models, sold its 3-millionth vehicle since the program’s launch in 1997, the first manufacturer-certified program in the industry to reach that sales milestone.”

GM North America Reports September, 2008 Production; Third-Quarter Production at 915,000 Vehicles; Fourth Quarter Forecast remains at 875,000 Vehicles

In September, GM North America produced 335,000 vehicles (162,000 cars and 173,000 trucks). This is up 12,000 vehicles or 4 percent compared with September 2007 when the region produced 323,000 vehicles (118,000 cars and 205,000 trucks). (Production totals include joint venture production of 18,000 vehicles in September 2008 and 15,000 vehicles in September 2007.)

The GM North America third-quarter production was 915,000 vehicles (437,000 cars and 478,000 trucks) which was down 10 percent compared with a year ago, due to production adjustments in response to market changes that will reduce the number of trucks produced by about 175,000 and increase the number of cars by about 70,000. GM North America built 1.020 million vehicles (367,000 cars and 653,000 trucks) in the third-quarter of 2007.

The GM North America fourth-quarter production forecast remains at 875,000 vehicles (407,000 cars and 468,000 trucks) which is down about 16 percent compared with a year ago. GM North America built 1.042 million vehicles (358,000 cars and 684,000 trucks) in the fourth-quarter of 2007.

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world’s largest automaker, has been the annual global industry sales leader for 77 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 266,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 35 countries. In 2007, nearly 9.37 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.


(Calendar Year-to-Date)
January – September



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