General Motors said Tuesday that its U.S. new vehicle sales rose 14% last year, amid a broader recovery in the auto industry driven by a strong economy and improved supply of critical components.
The company sold 2.6 million cars and light trucks in 2023, up from 2.3 million in 2022, when a computer chip shortage prevented GM and other manufacturers from producing as many cars as consumers wanted to buy .
But in a potentially worrying sign for the company, sales rose just 0.3% in the final three months of the year. This suggests that demand for cars and trucks weakened late in the year as Federal Reserve interest rate hikes made car purchases more expensive.
Separately, Toyota Motor, the second-largest U.S. auto seller after GM, said its 2023 sales rose 7% to 2.2 million vehicles. The company’s sales in the fourth quarter were 15.4% higher than the same quarter a year earlier.
Electric vehicle sales surged last year, topping 1 million in total for the first time. But purchases of battery-powered cars and trucks are growing at a slower pace than manufacturers expected, forcing GM and other companies to adjust production plans.
GM sold nearly 76,000 electric vehicles last year, up from about 39,000 in 2022. The vast majority of those sales were of two versions of the Chevrolet Bolt, which the company has stopped producing.
The company’s shares were down about 2.5% around midday on Wednesday.