U.s. Route 422s Saturn Bested County Dealers

By: Zeke Gervis

Saturn of U.S. Route 422 in Niles bested among county dealers in new-vehicle sales in May with 115 title registrations. This and other related data were released in Monday by the Automobile Dealers Association of Eastern Ohio.

The dealership also bagged the highest post in May 2006 sales of 76 vehicles. The data showed that it being the top placer far left all other dealers behind.

The 115 sales were the highest among any other county dealer after Diane Sauer Chevrolet made 132 sales last September 2006.

Jim Pace Pontiac, Saturn's neighbor and family member, grabbed the second spot in May sales with 71 sold new vehicles.

Generally speaking, as compared to last year, dealers overall marked their second straight month of better sales.

With 176 new and old vehicles sold, the Sweeney Buick Pontiac GMC bested among other dealers. The Sweeney Chevrolet followed shortly with 152 vehicles sold while the Greenwood Chevrolet Hummer followed next with 149.

Although Chevrolet's sales this year went down from 706 in May 2006, the brand remained the most marketed marques in the area with 611 vehicles sold. Ford got the second spot with 247 vehicles compared to 298 last year. Pontiac ranked third with 205 vehicles - the only brand in the top three that had an increase from last year's 147 sold vehicles.

The Cheveys got the top three vehicle sales ranks. It was led by the Trailblazer SUV with 133 sales versus last year's 200 vehicles. The Impala at 129 with 76 last year followed as it ranked second while the Cobalt (the one built in Lordstown) ranked third at 126 compared to 129 a year ago.

Mike Capito, the sales manager of the Saturn new-car, commended the exerted rush efforts of the brand's new lineup as well as the surge response to the customers' growing concern over increasing gas prices. He pointed out that earlier this year the midsize Aura won Motor Trend's North America Car of the Year while the two-seater Sky roadster pushes excitement into the lineup. The Vue has a new crossover utility vehicle for the 2008 year model. This is especially engineered for customers looking for a blend of sport utility vehicle and car.

Mr. Capito said that their company came out in 1991when they had one size car. And now, according to him, they already have a car that would meet every individual's need.

He further said that Saturn is also benefiting from $3 per gallon of gasoline. But he was unsure about the Ion small car and Aura that both receive more than 30 miles per gallon on the highway.

He added that incentives are not playing a huge role in Saturn's success. This is because although some interest financing offers are available, the brand sells vehicles at sticker price.

The Automobile Dealers Association of Eastern Ohio witnessed May sales in rise over last year for the second straight month. May sales are now 2,471 versus 2,247 in 2006. Dealers closed last year's deficit of 11,180 to 11,053.

However, used sales declined from last year's 3,628 to 983 vehicles this year. Sales starting January to May 2007 are off 19,008 to 21,596.

About Saturn Corporation

Saturn Corporation is a division of one of Detroit's Big Three, General Motors. It is a brand of automobiles that was established on January 7, 1985 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of GM. It is active almost exclusively in the United States and Canada. In 1990, Saturn's owner company began manufacturing the brand's vehicles, which was as a response to the success of Japanese small-car imports in the United States.

Originally, Saturn's motto was "A different kind of company, a different kind of car" from GM's experiences acquired through its NUMMI and CAMI Automotive joint ventures. The mother company has organized the Saturn Corporation differently from their existing divisions with the attempt to compete with the Japanese management techniques. Workers would have more control at Saturn as well as involvement in the plant.

Maker of quality , the Saturn Corporation has also established its own network from nothing, which was both independent and different from those used by veteran GM divisions. Instead of traditional automotive sales, the company put much focus on the quality of customer service, with insights gained from travel and hospitality as well as consumer retail industries.

The peculiarity of Saturn's distribution network was highlighted by referring to what would usually be called "dealers" as "retailers", and conversely "retail facilities" as regards "dealerships". The "retail facilities" served non-competing "market areas" which are known for not bargaining the price (the cars are sold at their exact sticker price), their sales environments with no pressure, and professional sales staff.

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