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GM News, New Models and Market Share

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  • dieselonedieselone Posts: 5,653
    i hope you dont give up on domestics.

    I haven't given up on domestics, just GM's crap. One thing to consider is just because a car/truck is 100% reliable doesn't mean it's desirable. Quite frankly, I've owned several GM products over the years and they've all sucked in one way or another. Only one went 40k w/o a problem and that's my wife's 07 Grand Prix (company car), which I'd gladly PAY money to get rid of if we had the choice and it has been 100% reliable. There is a reason why you can buy a 1-2 year old GP for less money than a Civic of the same vintage.

    Our previous GM vehicles within the last decade are a Suburban and Impala. The Impala was OK (company car), but it was plagued by GM's piss poor engineering with engine cradle and ISS (intermediate steering shaft) issues. The 3.4 while a bit crude, had decent power for a base engine (gearing was to tall) and returned good fuel economy and was fairly comfortable, at the time I really didn't like it, but having the 07 GP has given me a whole new prospective of what a terrible car is, so in that light, the Impala has moved up a bit.

    My Suburban was terrible in every way. Trans failed at 45k, pitman arm at 50k, a/c compressor at 60k, fuel pump at 65k, stuck HVAC controls and 4wd selector switch @ 70k, had to clean the throttle body every few months or the gas pedal would stick (it would stick closed, and required effort to push the pedal the first 1/8 inch then it would break free causing you to lurch when accelerating, very annoying). None of these were cheap issues with repair bills ranging from $1800 (trans), $1200 (a/c) $800 (fuel pump), $500 (HVAC issues) etc. Plus when not in the shop I had to put up with piston slap with the 5.3, it would chatter like a diesel when first started on cold mornings (known 5.3/6.0 v8 issue that GM says won't hurt anything but sounds like hell), squeaks, rattles, and electrical issues I never attempted to fix, such as the rear window washer pump turning on any time the fog lights were on and the rear wiper would leave the parked position when the rear defogger was on. This was all on a vehicle with 45k miles on it. Just pathetic

    Thankfully, the 07 Expedition I replaced the Suburban with has been great. It's more comfortable, much quieter, no rattles or squeaks, the 24v 5.4 v8 is smoother and pulls my camper and boat much better thanks to having more torque at a lower rpm, plus more aggressive gearing. It never feels strained. The steering is much better and even shames the steering rack in the Grand Prix. I enjoy driving it (never thought i'd say that about a 1/2 ton BOF SUV). Best of all is no problems. At 50k miles it's still tight w/o any squeaks or rattles and no issues. So I would consider another Ford based on my ownership experience so far. But I like it enough where a few problems wouldn't bother me. Some vehicles are worth putting up with some issues in my opinion.
  • dieselonedieselone Posts: 5,653
    I don't agree that reliability is the only deciding factor when making a car purchase. Reliability does not equate to quality or desirability. My dad has pretty much always purchased Fords. He keeps his cars a long time and his past two Fords (a '92 Crown Vic and '00 Taurus) both went 200k w/o to many issues and he liked them both. Well, he bought an '09 Honda Accord EX-L v6 a few months ago. He decided to test drive a bunch of cars and buy the one he liked the best and that is what he did.

    He was 100% confident a new Fusion (2010 model wasn't out yet) or Taurus had the potential to be just a reliable or even better than his last two Fords, but he didn't find them desirable when compared to the Accord and he's been extremely happy so far. The domestics may have lost another lifetime customer for good as this was my dad's first non domestic car. My inlaws are pretty much the same.

    My FIL is a retire iron worker from the steel mills. He's always bought domestic and their last purchase, they did the same thing. They test drove everything from a Accord to Taurus and came home with a new (back in '05) Camry. My MIL loves it and it has 95k w/o any issues, my FIL just changed the front brakes for the first time. My MIL's previous '95 Saturn was falling apart and leaking trans fluid by 50k, the odds of her buying another domestic are probably pretty slim as they are extremely happy with the Camry and how their dealer treats them.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    My point was that it takes a couple of tries for innovation to work sometimes, and that shouldn't reflect too poorly on a CEO. What should reflect is when they fail to innovate at all.

    So, poster apparently sees innovation in Aztek, SSR, Cimmaron, etc. Innovation is fine if main attributes of product are marketable and product is "Profitable".

    You missed "my" point. Apparently GM top management has "never" been accountable for their decisions to start production of certain vehicles that proved failure in the marketplace - Aztek, SSR retro, Cimmaron, Allante, Reatta, etc. And to lesser extent add weird goofy vehicles such as mid 90's Impala, Buick Roadmaster, Buick Riviera, 2000's Rendezvous, last gen rental favorite Malibu and on and on and on and on. To lesser extent, some other failures that Trump might have said "You're fired" could include various Oldsmobiles (Aurora, Acheivea...), Pontiac Fiero, retro GTO.....

    A top mgmt guy was fired at VW for sponsoring and approving the Phateon. Seems like we have never heard of any top mgmt person at GM ever being fired by the GM board. Guess the board has also been incompetent over last 3-4 decades. Hey, not a guess. GM is in bankrupt condition.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    Man, I'd say 4-8 years spent with a Grand Prix would be depressing. Just a horrible car in terms of driving dymanics and comfort.

    There are people that just don't know any better and do not possess ability to discern differences in driving dynamics between American and foreign brands. Many of these also buy American brands out of habit and to be loyal to the U.S.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    Now the rubber must hit the road! Chevy and Cadillac should stand alone to form a new identity for GM. Value and exclusivity.

    Good points in your post. Add one more element. "GM" name should be buried and 2 new companies, Chevrolet and Cadillac, should be formed. GM has been very good at burying, ditching models over the years - Lemans, Bonneville, Roadmaster, Catalina, Caprice, etc. So now it is time to ditch "GM". Their new marketting does not have to say GM name is buried, merely that 2 great new companies are being formed: Chevrolet and Cadillac.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,176
    Reliability does not equate to quality or desirability.

    To me reliability is one dimensional. The vehicle gets you where you are going and back without failure. My GMC Hybrid PU was reliable. It was just not a great vehicle to drive. It had a wonderful sound system with XM as long as you were parked. Out on the highway at 65 MPH the wind noise drowned out classical music unless you turned it up to over 100 decibels. You could pull on the drivers door and it went away. Yet the dealer after 3 tries could not get it to close properly. When they adjusted it tight enough to cut out the noise you had to slam the door with such force you were afraid of breaking something.

    The other glaring problem was the auto shut-off. If you were on the slightest hill you could not take off without spinning the tires. It was especially bad on wet streets. I'm just happy I did not take a beating selling it after a year and a half of ownership. It was unique and that was the biggest selling point. Though it took a long time on Craigslist to get my price. Which was $7000 more than the dealer offered in trade on a new Denali. I'm thankful now that I did not get what I wanted in trade. I would probably not have liked the 2007 Denali as much as the Sequoia.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,402
    Another top reason for bankruptcy. I got one too. Here it is:

    Whatever life brings, Pontiac drivers can approach it with Total Confidence. Starting now.

    Pontiac Total Confidence is a special package of services designed to keep your hard-earned vehicle investment as well as your family safe and secure. There's nothing to add or order. Nothing. Total Confidence for Pontiac vehicles includes:

    • Product Protection: fully backed 5-Year, 100,000-Mile Powertrain Warranty1
    • Family Protection: OnStar®2 for one year on most Pontiac vehicles
    • Vehicle Value Protection: Finance a new Pontiac vehicle, and we'll help protect its retail value at trade-in time3
    • Payment Protection: if you lose your job due to economic reasons, Pontiac will cover up to 9 months of payments (up to $500/month)4

    Best of all, Pontiac Total Confidence comes with every new 2008, 2009 and 2010 Pontiac. So starting now, you're free to shop, own and drive a Pontiac with Total Confidence.


    R.I.P., Old GM! What a disaster! There will be no 2010 Pontiacs and here is another pitch. Perfect! :D

    Best of ALL, we're FREE to shop ELSEWHERE!

    Regards,
    OW
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,176
    1957-1958
    Knudsen came to Pontiac with unspoken, but strongly implied orders: make the division something really special in five years, or lose the nameplate. Pontiac had a fine reputation for durability and reliability, but wasn't known for building cars that commanded attention. His strategy, not surprisingly, was to infuse new life into the product. His first major change was to kill the silver streaks, Pontiac's design hallmark. Around since 1935, the "suspenders," as Knudsen called them, were gone by the '57 model. He issued the order days before the vehicles went into volume production. The tooling was in place, the parts and components in production, the press photos had been shot, and newspaper, magazine and showroom ads prepared. He also phased out the signature Indian-head hood ornament in '57.

    Also in 1957, John DeLorean joined Pontiac to head up advanced engineering. DeLorean, Knudsen and Pontiac chief engineer Pete Estes were a powerful team and inspired the cars that soon would reshape the division.

    Pontiac unveiled the Bonneville in February 1957 at the Daytona Beach race. Considered an upscale model, it was the first Pontiac to have fuel injection, and was a direct competitor to the Chrysler 300 and DeSoto Golden Adventurer. Pontiac limited production to just 630 vehicles and offered it only in a convertible. The V8 engine was bored out to 370-cubic inch displacement, and achieved 310 SAE gross hp at 4800 rpm and 400 lb.-ft. of torque at 3400 rpm with a top speed of more than 130 mph. It ran 0-60 mph in 8.1 seconds, and a tuned stock model was timed at 144 mph on the Salt Flats. It weighed 4,285 lbs. and cost $4,400.

    Bonneville became a series in '58, adding a two-door hardtop. Prices dropped to $3,179 for the hardtop and $3,277 for the ragtop. Pontiac built just 400 fuel injected Bonnevilles in '58. The division then dropped fuel injection in '59.


    Those to me were the best years for Pontiac. My step dad bought a 1961 Tempest while I was in High school. We put more miles on the loaner cars than that Tempest. It was in the shop more than in our driveway. My dad still kept buying Pontiacs. I think they went down hill after the 1960 Bonneville. None since did anything for me.
  • cooterbfdcooterbfd Posts: 2,770
    ".....And to lesser extent add weird goofy vehicles such as mid 90's Impala, Buick Roadmaster, Buick Riviera,"

    I'll give you the Impala, but the last Riviera actually looked pretty darn good, compared with the 1986-1994 models. The Roadmaster actually had a fairly good following, ESPECIALLY when they put the LT-1 engine in it. Those are now becoming desirable because of the driveline. The Allante and Reatta were hand built, and low production models, meant to compete w/ the Mercedes coupe and convertible. While not as desireable at the time, check out the ad's on Hemmings. The Reatta, Allante, and Merc. SL convertibles all bring in about the same money; $15-20K
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    He was 100% confident a new Fusion (2010 model wasn't out yet) or Taurus had the potential to be just a reliable or even better than his last two Fords, but he didn't find them desirable when compared to the Accord and he's been extremely happy so far. The domestics may have lost another lifetime customer for good as this was my dad's first non domestic car.

    I assume he cross-shopped similar models, comparing the Fusion SEL to the Accord EX-L. Its interesting though, as the mean and median age for Accord buyers goes up, the mean age for the Fusion buyer goes down. Honda (and more-so Toyota) is becoming the new Buick and Lincoln.

    Its ashame to lose a buyer to a foreign make, but how many more vehicles is he going to buy in his lifetime? How many more vehicles are you and I going to purchase? This is what killed Lincoln and Cadillac, making cars for older folks who don't drive a whole lot of miles, don't change cars too often, and in retirement, are on fixed incomes.

    I hope the Honda cylinder shutdown issue is resolved and he has a smooth ride that will last him a long time.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    So, poster apparently sees innovation in Aztek, SSR, Cimmaron, etc.

    Actually I concurred with you on the Cimmaron, but the Aztek was a whitespace vehicle, totally new, developing a niche market. Yes yes it was terrible...so terrible Toyota tried the same thing with the FJ Cruiser and failed. Now that market has matured and given us the Infiniti FX, BMW X6, and the Nissan Marano and Ford Edge.

    Oldsmobile Achiva was how the Quad4 came into being. Again, for the time, a pretty advanced engine with 16 valves, fuel injection, etc. This was in the 80s when Ford had the Vulcan in everything, and Chrysler still needed Mitsubishi to make their engines. That engine should've been in the Fiero!

    Which brings us to the Fiero...the concept was great, a lightweight, high mileage 2 seater with dent resistant body panels (a la Saturn). It used a spaceframe type assembly to support those lightweight body panels. I know I know, it was so terrible that again Toyota copied it and introduced the MR2 2 years later.

    I guess what I am missing is what it takes to be a success in your book. Does it have to sell 1,000,000 vehicles a year, because those days are long gone. Do you personally have to like it, because I don't know relevant that is in aggregate. I think the Camry is the most boring miserable car to drive ever (next to the Prius) but don't think my opinion is so valid.

    A top mgmt guy was fired at VW for sponsoring and approving the Phateon.

    Because they were trying to cannibalize sales from another brand they already had, not because the car was bad in any way. I believe that was in your original post, about stealing sales from other brands under the same parent. Add to that, the Phateon was definitely innovative.
  • dave8697dave8697 Posts: 1,498
    Your Suburban experience is the equivalent of my lifetime of vehicle problems all manifested into a single vehicle. I had an Astro for 19 years that I had to put in a fuel pump. I had an Astro for 11 years that needed trans work. I had a couple of vehicles that the rotors warped. A bad caliper slide hung up the caliper and I had the brakes on for a 1000 miles due to twisted caliper alignment. Once I didn't change front pads early enough.

    All non warranty work in up to 50,000 miles in my 6 new GMs:
    an alternator belt on one, $14
    a battery on another in 5th year
    nothing
    nothing
    a battery in another, but in 6th year
    nothing.

    My used Ford has been near flawless. It has the terrible 3.8 with factory headers and a bad O2 sensor and only gets 28 mpg hwy.
    I ran a used Buick from 88k up to 171k miles for less than just your a/c repair and that includes maintenance and wear items like tires and oil changes.

    Your luck has been about 20 times worse than mine with GM. With Ford we are even. Neither one of us is typical. Maybe the average luck with GM's is better than mine so far.
  • PMOPMO Posts: 278
    You people in the USA would screw up the lords prayer ,We Gave you a Chance to build Buick after we made it the seller that it has been for 100 years . Cadillac was built in Canada only from 1923 to 1936 and we gave you a shot at building it again ,The Pontiac and Oldsmobile Got Durant Kicked out of GM for him to develop the Chevrolet in the USA and Canada and bought his way back in with the help of McLaughlin and Dort The Car that most impressed was Our Canadian LaSalle built in Canada from1927 to1935, we built them all and you in America take the upside but be it known you cheat at everything to get ahead. Canada built GM and it will fight for it in any event 100 plus 1 years and counting. starting with the cars with Buick motors built in 1907 for 1908 before the holding company of GM was formed by Durant (because he signed a contract with S McLaughlin to supply Buick motors for 14 years) Durant had an ACE in the hole.
  • steevosteevo Posts: 340
    You compare the FJ Cruiser to the Aztec and expect your opinions to be taken seriously?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,357
    I don't think Canada is in a position to "give" anyone anything when it comes to cars...

    It would be the same as someone in Alabama claiming they control Daimler-Benz or someone in Ohio claiming they control Honda...insane....branch plants do not allow anyone to "give" permission to a foreign company.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,402
    General Motors (GM) disclosed in an SEC filing Friday afternoon that the GM Common Stock Fund, an option in the automaker’s employee savings plans that allowed workers to choose to invest some of their retirement money in the company’s stock, has sold all of its GM shares, and now holds only short-term fixed income investments and money market instruments.

    GM explained in the filing that the manger of the fund, State Street Bank and Trust, under certain circumstances is specifically authorized to do exactly what it did: :

    * If “there is a serious question concerning General Motors…short-term viability as a going concern without resorting to bankruptcy proceedings.”
    * Or if “there is no possibility in the short-term of recouping any substantial proceeds from the sale of stock in bankruptcy proceedings.”

    In the filing, GM said that “State Street made the determination that this standard had been met due to the economic climate and the circumstances surrounding GM’s business.”

    GM said the fund began selling the stock on March 31, and completed the sales today. The fund is going to be liquidated, and will no longer be offered as an option on GM retirement plans.

    Draw your own conclusions.


    Regards,
    OW
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    Because they were trying to cannibalize sales from another brand they already had, not because the car was bad in any way. I believe that was in your original post, about stealing sales from other brands under the same parent. Add to that, the Phateon was definitely innovative.

    Nah. Stealing had nothing to do with it. One of the largest problems was that folks that could both afford and appreciate the Phaeton's virtues would not be caught dead in a VW dealership. Much the same as if Toyota were to have made a mistake (not too likely) and develop and market a car equivalent in price and atttributes to top Lexus sedan and name it a Toyota something that would be bought and serviced at Toyota dealers. Who in their right mind would spend $60-70K on it and then have to sit in ordinary waiting room next to Corolla owners while getting brief service. This would be beneath them.
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    The Allante and Reatta were hand built, and low production models, meant to compete w/ the Mercedes coupe and convertible.

    "Meant to compete with..." They did not even come close. These cars were failures in every regard. Nobody high up got fired for these bombs. The only acclaim for Allante that I recall is when Kelly Bundy was competing with other models to do an ad/promo for the car.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    One of the largest problems was that folks that could both afford and appreciate the Phaeton's virtues would not be caught dead in a VW dealership. Much the same as if Toyota were to have made a mistake (not too likely) and develop and market a car equivalent in price and attributes to top Lexus sedan and name it a Toyota something that would be bought and serviced at Toyota dealers. Who in their right mind would spend $60-70K on it and then have to sit in ordinary waiting room next to Corolla owners while getting brief service. This would be beneath them.

    I think you make a lot of assumptions about other people - "them" and what they would do and not do.

    I can't think of a stand alone Audi dealer in Michigan that isn't paired with VW and or Porsche, sharing the same service facility and waiting room. Hyundai too seems to be having a pretty good go at a "premium" vehicle from a pedestrian brand.

    Instead Toyota introduced the Lexus ES250, which didn't even differ in body components from the Camry of the time. Even the ES300 had very little real difference.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    You compare the FJ Cruiser to the Aztec and expect your opinions to be taken seriously?

    Yup, both ugly trucks the market didn't want and no one bought. At least you can get a piece of plywood in the Aztec.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    You compare the FJ Cruiser to the Aztec and expect your opinions to be taken seriously?

    Yup, both ugly trucks the market didn't want and no one bought. At least you can get a piece of plywood in the Aztec.


    The only thing they have in common is that they're ugly. The Aztek was a crossover, the FJ an offroader truck. The Aztek was a midsize vehicle, the FJ a compact. Aztek - AWD. FJ - 4WD.

    To even think that they might be similar is truly a sense of desperation as far as justifying GM's screwups.
  • cooterbfdcooterbfd Posts: 2,770
    "......"Meant to compete with..." They did not even come close. These cars were failures in every regard."

    How can you say that??? While not as acclaimed as their MB counterparts, the same clientele bought them. Look at their values today. they are as "worthless" and as much of a "bomb" as their MB counterparts from that era.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,990
    I never really heard that many people say that the FJ was ugly. A guy on my street traded his MINI for one.

    I never really understood why the Aztek took so much flak while the Rendezvous was pretty popular.

    "There seemed little chance U.S. car makers could look any worse, but moves like General Motors' announcement Thursday that it will cut production this summer risk scaring off remaining potential customers and eroding decades of brand loyalty."

    Brand loyalty at risk as GM makes new cuts (Lincoln Tribune)

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • carnaughtcarnaught Desert SWPosts: 1,613
    ......Rick Waggoner could get a $20 million exit package from GM. If that isn't the final "last straw" to the American taxpayers and shareholders :mad: .

    What a crock this is
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,357
    I dunno, a mint in the wrapper say 2500 original mile 1989 560SL should bring a pretty penny more than a similar same year Allante. I've seen decent Allantes locally for around $7500...I wouldn't want the 560SL that you can buy for that money, I'd go broke at light speed. A similar decent 560SL is still going for 12-15K. Maybe not a huge difference in raw dollars, but in percentage terms.

    The Allante, for all of its shortcomings, is probably the best Caddy product of that time.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    To even think that they might be similar is truly a sense of desperation as far as justifying GM's screwups.

    It wasn't serving as justification of anything, just showing that other companies follow similar screw ups. I think where domestic manufacturers have fallen down in the past is proving out the concept and engineering before the customer gets it. This is where the reliability issues come in on vehicles like the Vega and the Fiero, or even the Citation (you could fit a full sized wheel chair in the hatch back area with the rear seats up).

    Chrysler invents the minivan, GM can't figure it out (never did) and Ford just copied the Dodge as much as possible, and brings in Nissan then Mazda to help. This is what GM execs should've been spanked over. Now they just say people don't want minivans and bring in "cross overs" It took Toyota and Honda 3 tries each to nail the minivan. Now they are getting brought back to earth by Kia since their minivan is an Sienna clone. And actually thats not really fair because there is nothing mini about the Siena and Odyssey except their payloads; they are larger than short wheelbase full size vans.

    If you really like the FJ I didn't mean to offend you.
  • dave8697dave8697 Posts: 1,498
    He wouldn't throw out the UAW contract. he stepped aside and told delphi and the UAW to negotiate with each other. Now all of a sudden, the GM BK judge will tear up the UAW contract?
  • tlongtlong CaliforniaPosts: 4,776
    Chrysler invents the minivan, GM can't figure it out (never did) and Ford just copied the Dodge as much as possible, and brings in Nissan then Mazda to help. This is what GM execs should've been spanked over. Now they just say people don't want minivans

    Comment 1: I never understood why Chrysler is given the credit since the original VW van seems pretty similar. Fairly small, right side sliding door, three rows of seats. VW was much cruder but also much earlier (1950's-1970's).

    Comment 2: GM could be forgiven for not getting the minivan right. But they also didn't get the midsized sedans right, they also didn't get the small cars right, they also never saw the potential of premium small cars. Speaking personally, I don't enjoy big vehicles, but I do enjoy good handling and good interiors. So in 1985 when I looked for a decent handling small sedan I bought a VW jetta. My best American competition was the Tempo/Topaz. When I wanted an even more upscale small sedan in 1998, I looked at the BMW 3 series, the Passat, Audi A4. I even considered the Caddy Catera but it was a far cry from the others. I ended up with the Audi. I had NO American cars that could even compete! Lots of profits made by BMW, Audi, Acura, Lexus, and even VW on small premium sedans. Where are the US manufacturers in this market?
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    I don't particularly like the FJ (the Xterra is a better implementation of the same concept, and came first too...the FJ was also Toyota's try at the whole "retro" thing). However, I've noticed with all manufacturers save GM and Chrysler, they seem to be able to learn from their mistakes. You noted the FJ is now gone. Sienna and Oddessy kept improving. Improvements on the Fusion...someone noted VW fired the guy responsible for the Phaeton.

    On the other hand, GM makes a mistake like the Cobalt or Aveo, and instead of learning from it, they rebadge it as a G3 or G5! And just when it seems like they're learning something and make the Cobalt SS, guess which version DOESN'T get rebadged as a "sporty" Pontiac? And no one at GM gets fired over debacles like this until the US President steps in, which says that that sort of culture of rotten work is at the very least acceptable there.
  • cooterbfdcooterbfd Posts: 2,770
    Hemmings has a couple of Allante conv. w/ 50-70K on the clock for around $15K. There is even a 50,000 mile Reatta conv. going for $22K
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