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DETROIT — General Motors Co. will not reopen any factories, even though it has shortages of several new models, the company's top sales executive said Tuesday.

Vice President of Sales Susan Docherty told reporters on a conference call that GM needs to use its current factories to the maximum rather than taking the expensive step of reopening a closed plant.

Dealers have reported shortages of some new models, such as the Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain midsize crossover vehicles, and some GM executives have been pushing to reopen a factory to boost production while the models are still hot.

"We don't need to do that," Docherty said. "We need to leverage our existing footprint."

At the Detroit auto show in January, GM North American President Mark Reuss raised the possibility of reopening a factory, and Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said that was how Chrysler gained market share in the 1990s when it had hot-selling products.

But Docherty said GM is just now seeing the benefits of adding third shifts at the factory in Ontario where the Terrain and Equinox are made, as well as the Fairfax plant at Kansas City, Kan., that makes the Chevrolet Malibu midsize sedan, she said.

GM also said it has low supplies of full-size sport utility vehicles, the Chevrolet Camaro muscle car and the Cadillac SRX crossover, a cross between an SUV and a station wagon.

By having tight supply, GM is getting better prices on its new models and making more money on them, Docherty added.

GM also said that in February, nearly 70 percent of GM's sales were cars and crossover vehicles, the highest percentage ever.

Last year, almost 60 percent of GM's sales were light trucks, according to Autodata Corp.

Source: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jVlBVRk8xGIzXLxXF9NWK4qYmwmgD9E6LF801
 

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Some major fallacies in that story.

- The SRX is no longer the wagon/SUV mix.
- All GM plants still are not running at full capacity
- Tight supply makes more money for the dealerships, not necessarily GM.

I've seen a noticable increase in the number of 'Nox/Terrain/SRX's on the lots in the past couple of weeks. So the shortage seems to be ending from my perspective.

I have seen the decrease in the number of Tahoe/Suburban types on lots though. Very interesting in my area where these big boys are top sellers, and haven't slowed much at all due to gas cost/economy.
 

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FYI, for those who don't know, dealerships don't make their money from the individual sale price on a vehicle. Dealerships could care less to sell you a vehicle at their invoice price, because at the end of the year, they're going to get several grand back in volume bonuses. People often brag that they got the vehicle for "cost plus $1000" or something like that, but it doesn't really matter because the dealer is going to get an extra couple grand on each vehicle at the end of the year. Dealerships wouldn't be in business for very long if they were truly selling vehicles for just a hair above their invoice price (just a few percent profit).

If you really do your homework, you can negotiate a price with the dealer, factoring in their volume incentives. Some of the price-hunting websites, and even some dealerships will reveal this information to you. This is why "dealer invoice" is also deceiving, because it's often not what the dealer will truly pay for the car.

Dealers want volume, not selling high-demand low-supply vehicles that they can sell for a few extra grand, trust me. High demand just creates less hassle for the dealer, because they know people are lining up to buy them, and don't have to fart around with buyers to move them out the door.
 
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