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GM focusing on new designs

Jan. 9, 2013 at 12:48 PM

DETROIT, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- U.S. automaker General Motors will continue to focus on product development, its chief executive said Wednesday.

"It starts and ends with product," Chief Executive Officer Dan Akerson told reporters at the Renaissance Center in Detroit.

"The sun will be at our backs. These will be good years, not only here domestically but on an international basis," he said, predicting GM would gain market share in 2013 after slipping in 2012.

The Detroit Free Press reported Wednesday that GM's domestic market share fell to an 80-year low in 2012 of 17.9 percent.

Akerson said GM would break out of the slump with redesigned Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra and Corvette models. The company has said 70 percent of its products would be redesigned in 2012 and 2013.

Akerson called the seventh generation Corvette "one of the (most) beautiful cars ever made."

The sports car will have its public debut at a press event Sunday before the start of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

While touting the company's record overseas, Akerson said Europe was likely to have another off year.

"I think we see the market weakening in Europe right now. Germany looks like it could be slipping into recession. It's too early to call," he said.

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