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GM News, New Models and Market Share

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  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,087
    >What about the new Cadillac Volt? Will that be subsidized also?

    It should be.

    >remove the subsidy and let the free market decide the worth/value of these Volts.

    Were you there demanding repeal of the $4000 (?) tax credit from the Fed and more from certain states IIRC on the Prius? That's what helped toyota, a perfectlly profitable company, launch itself as the maven of electric assisted vehicles. I can't recall any great protest against the US taxpayers subsidizing the Prius and other toyota/Honda products. There were few other companies with hybrids which were purchased at that time. It was the big push to toyota.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    edited January 2013
    It wasn't the Corvair that influenced the Mustang...it was the Monza model which was the first time anyone had equated 'sporty' with 'compact', by adding deluxe vinyl trim, things like full wheel covers standard, bucket seats standard...both Monza and Mustang did those very things. The Mustang's creators admit that the Monza concept influenced them in the Mustang. I don't know why it's such a hard thing to accept for some folks here (not you, busiris).

    Monza sales took off, and it's what saved the Corvair in the early years. Everyone in the industry knew that.

    Mustang's sales performance at introduction time is legenday, which of course made Chevy take notice and make a sporty compact off of the chassis of its Falcon-like Chevy II. Ironically, the chassis of a Corvair Corsa was far more sporting than that of a Mustang or Camaro, as reviews of the day will verify. Still, the Mustang looked great, was cheap, had a huge options list, and could be had with increasing levels of V8 power, all things the Camaro cribbed two years later.
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited January 2013
    Ironically, the chassis of a Corvair Corsa was far more sporting than that of a Mustang or Camaro

    Maybe I dreamed this, or old age is catching up with my memory... But, I seem to recall a Corvair commercial in which they drove a Corvair up Stone Mountain outside of Atlanta...

    I can't find any info on it, so I guess it was all a dream...
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,369
    No, the Malibu is not a terrible car. It's an ok car in a field with much better competition. I see continuing acceptance of mediocrity. Why is that ok? I never see an answer to this question.

    The USA isn't going to excel by being mediocre.


    You will never get an answer to GM's mediocrity being accepted by some :shades: .

    Fact is GM is in the middle of rebuilding mode. Mediocrity is being fought with the new models such as the ATS/Vette. But in the case of the Malibu, ""GM-Disease" remains alive and well in the operational systems at GM. Let's see if the P/U Truck does better. The competition will either keep GM motivated or keep them mediocre. ;)

    The Malibu’s reputation as a toxic vehicle may have more to do with the botched launch rather than the Malibu’s merits as a vehicle. In that case, the fault lies with management rather than the Malibu itself.

    Keep that competition coming. It's most welcomed, afaic!

    But GM badly needs that new line-up. In its American home market, its share slipped from 19.6% to just 17.9% last year, the lowest since GM’s rise to pre-eminence under the leadership of Alfred Sloan in the 1920s. Although its worldwide sales last year rose by 2.9% to 9.2m vehicles, its best since 2007, its global share slipped by 0.4 points to 11.5%. It looks like being deposed as number one carmaker by a resurgent Toyota, with an expected 9.7m sales. And it is feeling the hot sausage-breath of Germany’s Volkswagen on its neck: VW’s relentless drive to become world leader took it to just under 9.1m sales.

    Regards,
    OW
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    Can you confirm or not, that "North American Truck of the Year" must be a vehicle which is currently available for sale?

    BTW, recent VW's have had a lot of problems if you read around. To be fair, I don't know anyone who owns one, but at some point I believe that will 'catch up to them'.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    I'm not a fan of the uber-Corvette with black wheels, red brake hardware, etc., but I like the 'lesser' Sting Ray model (and I wasn't even a fan of the original Sting Ray). I could still see the wife and me getting one in ten years from now and doing the stereotypical Route 66 trip and other road trips in contemporary comfort in one. It'd have to be not red, not white, not silver, not yellow, and not black, so not sure what that would leave us.;)

    Anyway...since we were discussing emblems a week or two ago...I will say right here....I dislike the "Sting Ray" (stingray?) emblem on the car. It took me a minute or two to actually realize what it was.

    I'd rather have had a small, discreet nameplate that said "Sting Ray" than this:

    http://www.autoguide.com/gallery/gallery.php/v/main/auto-shows/2013-detroit-auto- -show/chevrolet/2014-chevrolet-corvette-stingray/2014-chevrolet-corvette-stingra- y-emblem.jpg.html

    Almost looks like an electric guitar! ;)

    I can put up with that for the rest of the car, though.

    CR says Corvette has one of the absolute highest owner satisfaction rates of anything out there...behind the Volt, though.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    Can you confirm or not, that "North American Truck of the Year" must be a vehicle which is currently available for sale?

    Answered my own question, circlew. From their website:

    "The awards are given yearly after a months-long selection process by jurors. The award, and a back-to-back test session each fall at Hell, Mich., are paid for by jurors' dues."

    So the new GM trucks weren't considered. It's no surprise that the several-year-old truck design didn't win. ;)
  • berriberri Posts: 4,159
    I think you're beating a dead horse Uplander. This argument is apparently as divisive as Washington politics! I grew up watching all of this and still agree with you about Monza, which was then replicated by GM with Nova and some of the other division compacts. I can buy some of busiris' comment about VW if you consider the Karmann Ghia, but it was a much more understated approach. The big question I have in all of this is why GM was two years late to the pony party? Did they think they could accomplish a similar feat with existing vehicle lines for less money than a separate product line, or were they afraid a separate Camaro line would cannibalize too many other division vehicle sales, as well as possibly nibbling at high margin Corvette volume, or something else? To me at least, that's the more interesting question in all of this.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    edited January 2013
    You're right about the dead horse, berri. The guys responsible for the Mustang admit it, and the, ahem, experts here can't buy into it! ;)

    In answer to your question...and even as a kid, more so than now, I absorbed everything I could about Chevrolet... I think GM thought of themselves as the inventers and innovators, and others copied them, not the other way around. Ford caught them off-guard with the Mustang, right around the time Nader's book came out too, hurting Corvair sales not long after the gorgeous (IMHO) and very improved '65 models came out.

    On a Cub Scout trip, I went to Lordstown, OH when they were building Camaros and Firebirds there in '68. Great memory. I also remember seeing on Youngstown TV (we lived in PA 25 or so miles away, thankfully!) when they phased Firebird production into the plant in the spring of '67.

    I used to not like the '67-69 Camaro styling very much. The '67 has grown quite a bit on me though, over the years...simpler and rounder than the '69 which I know is a lot of people's favorite.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I was about to mention the same thing.

    Early on, hybrids and even TDi diesels had incentives early on. Ford capitalized big time. And VW. And Toyota.

    Today hybrids are widespread. Diesels sales have also grown. Both after the incentives expired.

    So it worked, actually.
  • tlongtlong CaliforniaPosts: 4,744
    Fact is GM is in the middle of rebuilding mode. Mediocrity is being fought with the new models such as the ATS/Vette. But in the case of the Malibu, ""GM-Disease" remains alive and well in the operational systems at GM. Let's see if the P/U Truck does better. The competition will either keep GM motivated or keep them mediocre.

    That's why the Malibu is so important. GM's weakest areas have been midsized and small sedans. The Cruze is at least a decent try, although reliability is still not great. The Malibu is "ok". If GM wants the world to believe it has changed, then a good Volt or ATS or SUV is nice, but the real change would be them building excellent CARS for today's mainstream market, not only the large barge market.
  • tlongtlong CaliforniaPosts: 4,744
    The big question I have in all of this is why GM was two years late to the pony party?

    ... and why was GM years late to the small sportser party (Miata > Sky, Solstice)
    ... and why was GM years late to the retro panel van party (PT Cruiser > HHR)
    ... and why was GM years late resurrecting the sporty coupe (new Mustang > Camaro)
    ... and why was GM years late with modern OHC engines?
    ... and why was GM years late with hybrids?

    Those are just the ones that come to me quickly.

    I would have thought a "market leader" would innovate like one. Being big, fat, and complacent is never good - unless you are Wagoner.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,369
    Can you confirm or not, that "North American Truck of the Year" must be a vehicle which is currently available for sale?


    No. It doesn't matter. It must be eligible according to these criteria:

    The winners were chosen by a jury of 49 automotive journalists from the United States and Canada.

    The awards – now in their 20th year - are unique in the United States because instead of being given by a single media outlet they are awarded by a group of automotive journalists from the United States and Canada who represent magazines, television, radio, newspapers and web sites.

    To be eligible a vehicle must be all new or substantially changed. The jurors considered dozens of new vehicles before sending their ballots to Michelle Collins, a partner at Deloitte & Touche early in December.

    The awards are designed to recognize the most outstanding new vehicles of the year. These vehicles are benchmarks in their segments based on factors including innovation, comfort, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.


    They are administered by an organizing committee and are funded with dues paid by the jurors. There are no paid positions. Automakers do not pay to have their vehicles considered or to use the awards in ads.

    GM trucks are not the most outstanding vehicles despite being "refreshed"..errr "All New". :blush:

    Regards,
    OW
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,369
    GM trucks are not the most outstanding vehicles despite being "refreshed"..errr "All New".

    Correction. The 2014 Silverado/Sierra was not released in time to make the long list. It will be on the 2014 list for NACTOY voting. :blush:

    Regards,
    OW
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    edited January 2013
    ... the genesis of small car design in the domestic auto companies. Chrysler discovered they couldn't build small cars to save their lives. So instead they are letting Fiat, a reasonably successful company in Europe, design them instead. Unfortunately Fiat failed in the United States previously , and some of their designs still aren't playing well here.

    Ford, upon discovery that they couldn't design a compact that didn't blow up, bought a stake in Mazda, a reasonably successful Japanese company, and had them take over designing Fords small cars. Ford also took the time to internalize some lessons, and now actually knows how to design their own small cars.

    GM, upon realizing their small cars sucked, promptly forgot. They ended up with a stake in Subaru, and used it to source a compact... for Saab. Then they sold the Subaru stake without any further real technology gain. And at some point they bought a failed Korean car manufacturer, which couldn't make cars anyone liked anywhere, and had them take over GM small car design.

    It's a miracle the Cruze and Sonic are as good as they are.
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,183
    Ford Fiestas back in the 80s ran great. Daewoos not so much, Geos had a better reputation.

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    Need help navigating? stever@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    Remember the "Aspire"? Being a wisea**, I used to joke about the one I'd see in the parking lot at work, 'what, does one 'aspire' to move up to an Escort next time?!".
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,910
    To be eligible a vehicle must be all new or substantially changed. The jurors considered dozens of new vehicles before sending their ballots to Michelle Collins, a partner at Deloitte & Touche early in December.

    Using that criteria, I have to wonder why the 2013 Ram won out? It's not a new body, as its design came out in 2009. And the 3.6 V-6 is not a new engine, as it came out for 2011, although this is its first use in the Ram.

    Still, I guess the Ram is more substantially changed for the 2013 model year than Ford, Chevy/GMC, Nissan, or Toyota.

    Way back in 1972, there was so much "non-new" on the automotive scene that Motortrend gave their car of the year award to the Citroen SM! I think the only new domestic design in '72 was the Torino/Montego, and there was nothing spectacular about them, although they did sell well enough initially to put a scare on GM.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Ram evolved slowly, coils, then engine, then 8 speed trans. Continuous improvement. They earned it over time.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Remember the "Aspire"? Being a wisea**, I used to joke about the one I'd see in the parking lot at work, 'what, does one 'aspire' to move up to an Escort next time?!".

    Great way to illustrate the difference. The Aspire was a Kia. The Escort was largely a Mazda, or at least influenced by it. Which would you rather have had then? Heck, which would you rather have now?

    And would anyone choose a Daewoo over a Kia, Mazda, or Subaru? Or even a Corvair? :shades:

    Personally I think GM should have hung on to Subaru and taken much more advantage of their small car knowledge, but because Subaru drivetrains are so unique I can see that being difficult. But then again, they never learned much from their deals with Toyota either. GM managed to GET things like the Prizm and Vibe to sell, but I wonder how many small-car design lessons they got from those, since they were rebadged Toyotas rather than true collaborations like the Ford Escort and Focus.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    But then again, they never learned much from their deals with Toyota either. GM managed to GET things like the Prizm and Vibe to sell, but I wonder how many small-car design lessons they got from those, since they were rebadged Toyotas rather than true collaborations like the Ford Escort and Focusus.

    So, GM had to collaborate with Toyota to bring a decent compact to market. Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic have been benchmark cars for many years that other manufacturers try to emulate. Do not believe that GM has ever had small cars that others have tried to copy and bring to market. Only a long string of failures such as Chevette, Vega, Cavalier, Cobalt. The early years of Saturn were miserable tries at trying to compete with Civic. All of these models have been banished to the GM grave yard probably never to be used again.

    Of course GM has been very successful with pickup trucks and big SUVs. Small cars, mid size cars, not so much.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    Early Saturns had envious owner loyalty and were sold at a no-dicker price. GM watered that formula down, sadly, but I think, yet again, to call the early Saturns a failure is misinformed.

    And you can call the Cavalier a failure, but they built it for 24 model years, during which it was usually in the top ten models sold.

    There are a lot of good automotive history books out there to read, you know.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    Let's see. The early Saturns had plastic doors so that parking lot dings were avoided. How many other car manufacturers followed that design. Wasn't color matching of plastic doors to the rest of the car a problem.

    Early Saturns had inferior engines and transmissions compared to Honda Civics. Saturn lagged in other attributes as well.

    Bottom line is that Saturn was supposed to be GM's answer to building small cars to compete with benchmark small cars such as Honda Civic. The Honda Civic is still around after many years, might have burped in last year or two, but Saturn is dead. A failure by GM.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    edited January 2013
    GM used that body shell design on the dustbuster vans and Camaros and Firebirds, and they absolutely, positively have held paint better--not to mention that they don't rust--decades later than other old cars I see here in the rusty northeast.

    But you're the expert. ;)

    They also resisted hail damage. I wish I were so lucky when we had both my Cobalt and old van in Rochester, NY during a hail storm.

    I wish I could buy a vehicle with that body construction now.

    That Saturn is gone isn't a reflection on the quality of those early Saturns, but it is a reflection of GM having more divisions in North American than everybody else.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    That Saturn is gone isn't a reflection on the quality of those early Saturns, but it is a reflection of GM having more divisions in North American than everybody else.

    Face up to it. Saturn was a failure. It's gone. One of many failures by GM. Saturn is one of many reasons why GM went bankrupt.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    edited January 2013
    Never worked for GM, and no one in my family has. I just am astounded by such sweeping generalizations on here, that's all...one after another after another. As a simple contrast, Toyota wins the recall crown year in and year out, settles a humongous class-action lawsuit, and all I hear from you is crickets chirping.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    And yet Toyota having recalls (some of which are voluntary and the responsible thing to do in order to fix customer issues BTW) does not excuse GM's mistakes in car design and business management, do they? Why do they have so many divisions? What niche does each one fill, and do they do so cleanly and logically? Why did they release a Malibu with so little rear legroom, something which I've seen you mention...very softly, I might add. ;)
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    Got a flyer in the mail yesterday. $500 'customer cash' on the '13 Malibu LS or $189/mo. lease; $500 'customer cash' on '13 Cruze LS "with automatic transmission" or $149/mo. lease; and $500 'customer cash' or $259/mo. lease on '13 Traverse.

    I still don't like Traverse's quarter-window cut, but the new grille is a great improvement IMHO.

    Trucks: 2013 Silverado 1500 LT 4WD Ext. Cab "All Star Edition", $4,000 'customer cash', $1,500 option package discount, $1,000 trade-in cash when you trade in an 'eligible vehicle' and $1,000 owner loyalty cash, for a "$7,500 total value".

    Except for the trucks, none of the others sound all that great of an offer to me.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,494
    edited January 2013
    As I've said here many times...I've never seen a single mention of the rear-seat legroom in a new Malibu...before I posted it myself right here.

    If I ever saw an honest discussion of other brands like I'm able to give GM products--I post what I like and what I don't like, but I don't see others doing that here about their favorite makes, or if they do, it's extremely rare in comparison, obviously to any regular readers here--that is what is so exhausting and energy-sapping to me about this forum. I'm thinking I'll hang out where I'm far less frustrated...probably to many's 'yeas'.
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