One could say that GM was goaded into importing the Holden Commodore to the U.S. by enthusiasts desperate for a four-door sports car here in the U.S. Badged as the Chevrolet SS, it was joined by another Holden import, which enjoyed better sales than the SS for most of 2014. But what a difference a year makes.
The Truth About Cars reports that so far through 2015, sales of the Caprice PPV are down some 54%. Chevy SS sales are down too, but only by 8%, and last month the four-door sports car set a new monthly sales record of 354 cars. Sure, that’s less than half a percent of GM’s annual U.S. sales, but the Chevy SS is appealing to a small subset of enthusiasts who appreciate the General bringing a niche vehicle to America. The Caprice PPV, meanwhile, may have fallen victim to the slow death of the large sedan.
Caprice PPV sales peaked last June at about 440 sales, but last month the automaker only sold about 160 vehicles. Halfway through the fiscal year, GM has moved just 803 Caprice PPVs, a little more than half the 1,503 Chevy SS sedans that have found homes. Unfortunately for both vehicles, American police departments seem to be moving away from sedans in general, and into crossovers or large SUVs.
GM sold over 13,000 Tahoe PPVs in 2013, more than three times as many Caprice PPVs sold in the same period, and as time went on sales only got worse. It looks like Caprice PPV sales won’t even break the 2,000 unit mark this year. It’s the same story over at Ford, where Taurus Interceptor sales are down, but Explorer Interceptor is up 36%, outpacing Tahoe PPV sales by a few hundred units.
Try as America might, we just can’t deny our inclination towards big vehicles. Good thing it’s a big country.