General Motors Co.’s new President Dan Ammann said Wednesday that the company will continue its product onslaught and effort to build and restore value in its brands, improve transaction prices and boost residual values.
Ammann, who joined GM in April 2010 and took over as chief financial officer a year later and became company president effective Wednesday, told attendees of Automotive News World Congress that while GM has had some recent product wins such as sweeping North American Car and Truck of the Year awards this week, it needs to continue looking to the future. Ammann said competition is fierce and competitors are producing world class vehicles.
“We’re going to have to keep doing more of what we’ve been doing just to stay ahead of the pack,” he said.
GM will launch more than a dozen new or significantly refreshed vehicles in the U.S. this year. Included in that figure are two new midsize pickups, which GM thinks will give customers options they don’t have today.
Ammann said some of GM’s most popular vehicles such as the Chevrolet Equinox and Chevrolet Cruze have gained market share and have higher residual values than older models they replaced.
“These are good validation points from really early on in the turnaround of how great product can fundamentally transform the business,” Ammann said.
And some redesigned products such as the 2014 Chevrolet Impala are translating into higher prices being paid by consumers as the company offers desirable, quality vehicles that offer customers value. GM’s average transaction price on the 2014 Impala is $7,400 more than the old model and its residual value has increase by 11 points. The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado is delivering $6,000 higher average transaction prices than the old model.
“We’re building on the strategy from before, bringing excellent vehicles, getting paid for them, getting recognized for them in the marketplace,” Ammann said.
In his new role, Ammann will oversee GM’s regional operations, Global Chevrolet and Cadillac organizations, plus will oversee GM Financial, global planning, GM’s Global Connected Consumer business and OnStar. He reports to GM’s new CEO Mary Barra.
Ammann was asked if he has ever worked for a woman before and how was it. “It was great,” Ammann said.
Ammann, 41, is a New Zealand native and is certified to test drive on the Nürburgring racetrack in Germany. Prior to joining GM, he worked in investment banking for Morgan Stanley and advised GM during its 2009 restructuring.