Despite its successes, Buick has not exactly emerged from the pack in the U.S. auto market. In 2011, the brand sold just 10% of the number of vehicles that Chevrolet sold, and just 7% of the 2.5 million vehicles that GM sold. Buick sales were up 14% in 2011. But in the first quarter of 2012, Buick sales declined 17%, which the brand says reflects an effort to vastly reduce fleet sales. In the first quarter, Buick retail sales declined 5%, while GM retail sales declined 1%.
"Buick makes nice product and it is making inroads," said Scott Oldham, editor-in-chief at Edmunds.com. "But it's hard to make the argument that it's super successful.
"It hasn't leapfrogged the competition, it hasn't reinvented the segment and it hasn't put Lexus out of business," Oldham said. "It has made great strides, but this is not exactly a revolution."
It is worth noting, however, that Buick is the oldest existing U.S. automaker. Since it was founded in 1899, and sold its first car in 1904, dozens of automakers have come and gone. The joke is that some of the early Buick buyers remain Buick buyers. The truth is that among the most important achievements in business are to survive and to continually innovate, and Buick is doing both.-- Written by Ted Reed in Charlotte >To contact the writer of this article, click here: Ted Reed >To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/tedreednc.
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