General Motors is angling to get back on top.
"We're looking to put ourselves back in the No. 1 position from a share perspective," GM North America President Steve Carlisle said.
While GM plots its path toward an all-electric future, the company also will strive to retake the U.S. sales crown it lost to Toyota Motor North America last year after nine decades as the country's top seller.
GM hopes to build enough inventory to overtake Toyota and meet pent-up demand while maintaining discipline.
But new-vehicle launches and updates to existing nameplates don't equate to a plethora of vehicles on the ground. GM has been refining its dealer tools to establish a more streamlined retail and delivery process, Carlisle said.
"We're putting tools in place to optimize the flow of product through the whole pipeline and allowing our dealers and customers to see further upstream," Carlisle said. "Those are all things that can play forward into an EV world where I think they'll really benefit not just ourselves or dealers, but more fundamentally consumers."
GM has dedicated $35 billion to electric and autonomous vehicle development through 2025 and aspires to have an all-electric lineup by 2035. As its EV portfolio grows, the automaker will continue to rely on the strength of its full-size pickups and SUVs for profit.
"It all has to work together," Carlisle said. "The current business has to perform. We have to execute while we make the future come true."
Carlisle, 60, spoke with Reporter Hannah Lutz in April. Here are edited excerpts.