GM sales increase in June, despite various recalls

Despite a record-setting string of safety recalls, General Motors reported on Tuesday that last month was its best June since 2007.

GM dealers delivered 267,461 vehicles last month in the U.S., and total sales were up 1 percent compared to a year ago, the Detroit-based auto manufacturer announced Tuesday morning. The uptick also comes despite two fewer selling days last month compared to June 2013.

“June was the third very strong month in a row for GM, with every brand up on a selling-day adjusted basis,” said Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president of Sales Operations. “In fact, the first half of the year was our best retail sales performance since 2008, driven by an outstanding second quarter.”

Buyers took delivery of more than 26,000 Lordstown-built Chevrolet Cruzes, a healthy number despite the drop when compared to June 2013 sales of 32,871 the all-time monthly sales record for the popular small sedan. For the halfway point in 2014, 145,338 new Cruzes have moved off dealer lots, nearly 9 percent higher than the 133,689 sold in the U.S. this time last year.

Overall, June auto sales in the U.S. slowed slightly, but still maintained a healthy pace.

GM, Toyota and Nissan all saw increases over last June. Sales at Ford and Volkswagen were down.

Sales were particularly strong at the end of May, which meant a slow start to June.

But Ford’s U.S. sales chief John Felice said sales picked up at the end of June as automakers started promoting Independence Day sales.

Analysts saw plenty to like in June. LMC Automotive raised its full-year U.S. sales forecast from 16.1 million vehicles to 16.2 million vehicles based on the combined strength of May and June. That’s up from 15.6 million vehicles in 2013.