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Can VW Overtake Toyota and GM To Become #1?

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 37,376
    Whatever the 4 door thing is in front, I don't want to know the story. At least this Buick will be engineered by a US (or Korean?) GM facility, which should be better.

    I'll convert the fintail to a hybrid or electric powertrain and drive it forever without an airbag etc than risk it in the stuff in that pic.
    texases said:



    The photo of the recent 33 car crash in China does nothing to raise my confidence:

  • fintailfintail Posts: 37,376
    You have to admit, the complexity and failure ramifications of phones and mini computers are apples and oranges to motor vehicles.

    I suspect China will have a faster learning curve due to stolen/joint venture gifted IP, but I still wouldn't roll those dice. I bet you won't be buying one either ;)
    gagrice said:


    Americans buy millions of $800 iPhones, iPads and iPods without blinking an eye. Apple is the most valuable company in the World on the backs of Chinese labor and the Bucks of Americans. Apple could buy GM and F out of petty cash.

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 30,436
    FintailI suspect China will have a faster learning curve due to stolen/joint venture gifted IP, but I still wouldn't roll those dice. I bet you won't be buying one either

    There is NO doubt about that. As they are not big on diesel in China. I will NEVER buy another gas vehicle. Nothing offered with gas power that I am attracted too. So far the Germans are the only choices for me.

    You can count on the Buick Envision built in China to be a big seller with the Buy American crowd. They only look at the name. Just a bunch of sheep. My PHD buddy bought a GMC Terrain. I told him he was supporting the Canadians. He did not believe me till he researched it. He likes it even though it has been in the shop for recalls and repairs. GM is 3rd World in my book. Never again.

    http://www.carscoops.com/2015/12/buick-envision-coming-to-united-states.html
  • fintailfintail Posts: 37,376
    edited December 2015
    Even if they made a diesel, you wouldn't buy it. We both know it :)

    I don't think Buicks are big sellers to any crowd on this continent anymore, their traditional demographic is vanishing. I stand by a prior prediction - it will sell to fleets, proud expats, and some brand loyalists or bargain hunters who don't know or don't actually care (even if they claim otherwise). It'll be a niche vehicle - good luck getting people out of their CRVRAVscapes or Korean equivalents. I doubt it will be a troublesome vehicle, as QC will be over the top - it has something to prove.
    gagrice said:



    There is NO doubt about that. As they are not big on diesel in China. I will NEVER buy another gas vehicle. Nothing offered with gas power that I am attracted too. So far the Germans are the only choices for me.

    You can count on the Buick Envision built in China to be a big seller with the Buy American crowd. They only look at the name. Just a bunch of sheep.

  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    gagrice said:



    Americans buy millions of $800 iPhones, iPads and iPods without blinking an eye. Apple is the most valuable company in the World on the backs of Chinese labor and the Bucks of Americans. Apple could buy GM and F out of petty cash.

    I am willing to wager Apple cars will soon be on the roads which are made in CHINA..

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    Well would you buy a Russian car right now, or a Buick made by Russian workers? How about an Iranian car?

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  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 50,066
    edited December 2015
    The last set of Nokians I had supposedly came from the Russian factory, but I don't think the tire guy really knew and I never can read the stamping on tires.

    Bit off-topic but kind of fun:

    Audi plans ice track to test cars on Alaska's North Slope
    (ADN.com)

    Moderator - Buying questions? Please include city or zip code and trim you are shopping, FWD or AWD, etc.

  • texasestexases Posts: 6,964
    Interesting about the Audi ice track - boy, that's a LONG way to go...just hope they don't hit a goose, lots of paperwork to fill out. Friend working at Endicott talked about how much work they went through to protect the geese so they could get shot by the hunters in the L-48...
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 50,066
    Fairbanks would be easier and maybe more extreme. Bit harder for the car spies to hang out on the Slope, but you know they'll be sneaking down the road and launching their drones soon enough.

    Moderator - Buying questions? Please include city or zip code and trim you are shopping, FWD or AWD, etc.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    Think of the logistics to support 80 people up there.

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  • texasestexases Posts: 6,964

    Think of the logistics to support 80 people up there.

    That'll be $$$ (or Euro...). But, with the long term oil production decline on the North Slope, and the recent oil price drop, I bet there are boarding options available at not too bad a price. Compared to 30 years ago, I imagine the on-site oil field work force is way down.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    Lots of smaller drilling operations are folding up their tents right now.

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  • berriberri Posts: 5,989
    edited December 2015
    All the horror stories on China products and ethics, I'd be leery of buying a Chinese Buick or Volvo.

    I think the Chinese Buick's will probably be pretty standardized in content given the long supply chain from China. But I suppose it gives GM some use of open capacity over there to test these new models in the US thanks to the global recession lowering cargo ship demand and over strengthening the US Dollar. If the vehicles do well they can be brought over to a NAFTA plant. Actually, the exchange rate and recent UAW contract probably bring Canada back into competition for plant usage. Long term, the global economy will improve and shipping from Asia will become expensive, plus US ports will be backed up again. I don't see China as a really viable supply chain alternative for higher volume vehicles in the long run. The dollar will eventually drop back, while Chinese labor and currency rates will likely increase. Then you throw in the long supply chain with its costs and longer lead time issues.

    I believe GM had to keep Buick during the BK days because it was starting to grow in China and a elimination in the US market at that point would have hurt it's image over there. But I'm not sure Buick or GMC are really necessary in the US anymore. The old step up model approach has been long overtaken by the two line model such as Toyota/Lexus, VW/Audi, Ford/Lincoln, etc.. The big issue GM has is the number of Buick/GMC dealers, often nearby Chevrolet, and even Cadillac dealerships. Closing down those dealers is expensive and could also have some impact on revenues at a time where investors are paying more attention to top line growth and performance. So I'm guessing that as long as Buick and GMC are incrementally profitable, they will continue to exist unless US demand for them dries up.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 50,066
    The gubernator just proposed a sales tax. If oil drops to $20 a barrel, the Russians will be able to buy Alaska back. Or even VW.

    Moderator - Buying questions? Please include city or zip code and trim you are shopping, FWD or AWD, etc.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    Not really. Demand for Russian oil has also dropped along with everything else, and they spend a bundle and a half on military hardware when they were flush. Not so flush anymore.

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  • berri said:

    All the horror stories on China products and ethics, I'd be leery of buying a Chinese Buick or Volvo. >

    Regarding Volvo, other than the S60 Inscription which is the long wheelbase S60 (Niche product, probably sell 500 of them tops), they will continue to come from Sweden and soon, South Carolina.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/sep/25/volvo-breaking-ground-on-500m-manufacturing-plant-/

    On a side note, I just read today that Aston Martin was toying with the idea of building in the states in the future. Great to see investment being made here.

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 30,436
    stever said:

    The last set of Nokians I had supposedly came from the Russian factory, but I don't think the tire guy really knew and I never can read the stamping on tires.

    Bit off-topic but kind of fun:

    Audi plans ice track to test cars on Alaska's North Slope
    (ADN.com)

    Over my 25 years in the Arctic I remember several auto makers setting up tracks in the winter for testing. BMW and Subaru were regulars. They usually made the track right in the middle of Deadhorse on a big frozen lake. The plan they have is in the BP controlled area of Prudhoe. No one given access that is not an employee with all the safety training classes. No tourist are allowed. Very interesting.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 30,436
    texases said:

    Interesting about the Audi ice track - boy, that's a LONG way to go...just hope they don't hit a goose, lots of paperwork to fill out. Friend working at Endicott talked about how much work they went through to protect the geese so they could get shot by the hunters in the L-48...

    There are a lot of Snow Geese that nest out at Endicott. Also my favorite the Swans. These were early arrivals the end of May 2001.

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 30,436

    Think of the logistics to support 80 people up there.

    According to people I know up there the camp capacity is very large. Many more camps than when I retired 10 years ago. Business is booming. Operations expanding East and West from Prudhoe Bay. When I went to work up there in 1980 we were paying $131 per day per man for room and board with community toilet facilities. When I left in 2006 it was down to $60 per day and I had a bigger room with private bath. The food quality did decline over the 25 years. We always had single status.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    What seems to be happening is that the percentage of lower paying jobs is increasing, and high paying jobs is decreasing. This is according to the state of Alaska website. I suppose Audi is benefitting from that trend.

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  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 30,436

    What seems to be happening is that the percentage of lower paying jobs is increasing, and high paying jobs is decreasing. This is according to the state of Alaska website. I suppose Audi is benefitting from that trend.

    I think it is much the same as CA. I have watched the trades in both CA and AK go down for different reasons. In CA immigrants are far more skilled than people believe. Skilled jobs that should pay $30 or more per hour are being done for under $15 here in San Diego. I had a guy build me a retaining wall. He was a Home Depot contractor. He and another man did a great job for $250 a day, for both of them. They both worked other jobs and this was their weekend job.

    In Alaska my son was working construction after the restaurant he worked in closed. He was getting $15 per hour. NO benefits. He is back working as a chef in Oregon getting $13 per hour with benefits.

    If I went back doing what I was doing in Alaska here, I would be lucky to get half the $39 per hour I was making when I retired 10 years ago. More people willing to work for less. The Union trades are all but gone.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    edited December 2015
    That's why one has to laugh when you hear on TV: "Let's bring those jobs back to America!". Well, they aren't coming back. Those jobs are gone, lost to either downsizing or robotics. The car building industry is a perfect example.

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  • texasestexases Posts: 6,964
    Recent post on another site caught my attention - the "Steam game controller" - factory in the US! Take a look, 100% automated, a few bodies around in case of emergency...
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    Something like 700 laser-vision robots working at the Ford plant in Kentucky. And they are faster and more accurate than the flesh robots they replaced.

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  • All this talk reminds me how glad I am that my son is training a a P.A.(physician's assistant).

    Far more face time with patients that the Dr. and get his weekends off(for the most part). His wife is an R.N., so they can work anywhere...

    He probably won't make what I did when I worked as a telecom guy for Hi-Tech company, but he'll do OK, plus his wife's income.

    Different world, eh?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    always different and the changes occur faster and faster. You gotta stay on your game in the 21st century.

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 37,376
    Downsizing, robotics, or long-term offshoring, of course. Can't forget the latter, although many wish they could.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,170
    I wonder if you could actually have a country that didn't make anything? Oh, maybe that's Switzerland?

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 37,376
    They make watches, chocolates, tax policies to aid evaders, and banking centers for crooks and monsters.

    They once made some cool cars with Mopar platforms, but I think Monteverdi is now long gone.
  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760

    I wonder if you could actually have a country that didn't make anything? Oh, maybe that's Switzerland?

    They hoard the wealth of all the crooked politicians., gangsters., dictators from all over the World.
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