In a year in which General Motors Co. has sold off products like Opel/Vauxhall or exited markets like South and East Africa and India, the automaker is doubling down on mobility, according to its fourth-quarter earnings call today.
“We are making remarkable progress in advancing our vision for personal mobility,” Mary Barra, chief executive of GM, said during the call. “This year we expect to advance our transportation-as-a-service [TaaS] initiatives to $1 billion.”
Currently, the OEM has spent roughly $600 million on its autonomous or TaaS technology and is expected to increase this by another $400 million to $1 billion — or $1.1 overall when factoring in Maven and other TaaS activities, Chuck Stevens, chief financial officer, said on the call. Part of this growth is centered on gathering more data for autonomous testing by increasing the fleet size of testing vehicles, Barra said.
Currently, there are 100 vehicles with level 2 or level 3 autonomous technology, the goal being to gather one million miles of vehicle data per month. This mileage data is also supplemented by simulations using previously gathered data, although Barra declined to specify how much, but said it was “very significant.”
General Motors Financial Co. reported $20.9 billion in net receivables for the fourth quarter, an increase of 26.8% year over year.
Additionally, the captive saw improvement in charge-offs. GM Financial saw net charge-offs decline 40 basis points in the fourth quarter to 2.2% of the average retail finance receivables, as compared to the same period a year prior, according to the report. For the full-year 2017, net charge-offs declined 40 basis points year over year to 2%.
Meanwhile, the captive reported a 2% year-over-year drop in retail sales penetration in the U.S. to 30% in the fourth quarter. However, retail sales penetration climbed 5% for the full-year to 39%, as compared to 2016.