There was a time, not that many decades ago, when General Motors controlled more than half the U.S. automotive market. Today, the company that has just re-emerged from bankruptcy is down to barely 20%, and the automaker expects to give up a few more points of share as it abandons four of its eight North American brands.
But the losses GM projects aren’t quite as great as some skeptics would expect, and that’s because the company is betting it can regain some of the ground it might otherwise lose with a big push by its biggest division, Chevrolet – which CEO Fritz Henderson has described as GM’s “main dog.”
Back when GM dominated all competitors, and Dinah Shore told Americans to “See the USA in Your Chevrolet,” the brand was almost synonymous with America. Today, it struggles to hang onto consumers, especially in import-oriented markets like California. So, it’s not surprising, Chevy is ready to roll out an experimental sales program that will first be test-marketed on the West Coast, in partnership with eBay. To find out more about that project, and what other plans Chevrolet has in store, TheDetroitBureau.com’s Bureau Chief Paul A. Eisenstein spoke to Chevy’s affable general manager, Ed Peper.