While the Chevy Cruze is undoubtedly the best compact vehicle on the market today, the Delta II-based sedan isn’t seeing the sales success enthusiasts expected in the United States. For its first two full months on the market, the Cruze sold 8,066 units (November 2010) and 10,865 units (December 2010) — lagging behind (inferior) industry stalwarts such as Toyota’s Corolla and Honda’s Civic, which together control nearly 30 percent of the U.S. compact segment. But not all is lost just yet, since Chevrolet has recently told dealers it expects up to six months for the Cruze to reach full market share and sales potential.
This prediction explains the reason behind the Cruze’s rather uninspiring sales performance, since many believed that the Cobalt replacement would come out of the gate kicking ass Corolla/Civic and taking names (Focus). Nevertheless, it appears that GM is facing certain production constraints that have prevented it from manufacturing more units than what it had sold as well as challenges in introducing a brand new nameplate to the market.
The GM Authority Take
If it does take The General a full six months to ramp up Cruze sales and production, we have to wonder whether the launch could have been changed so as to result in a better introduction and manufacturing as well as sales performance. If anywhere there was a perfect example of an argument against the “build it and they will come” adage, this is certainly it.
We’ll keep our ears to the ground on this one, so be sure to stay tuned to GM Authority — The Ultimate Independent Destination for All Things General Motors — for more exclusive Cruze coverage and independent General Motors news.