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hpmctorque ·

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hpmctorque
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  • Project Cars--You Get to Vote on "Hold 'em or Fold 'em"

    @texases said: Hmm...at least he has the dash, but I can't put 'ultimate MB' and 'velour seats' together.

    Improbable as it may seem now, it's likely that velour, or some other textile material, will make a come-back. Once leather becomes not only common, but old, interior designers of luxury vehicles will want to promote a new, high-end textile material to differentiate their product. It's more a question of when than whether, in my opinion. Chances are it'll be called something other than velour, to convey newness, and to justify a premium price. Nothing stays the same forever.

  • I spotted an (insert obscure car name here) classic car today!

    @fintail said: Maybe he means 200 4-speed models? Cool that the car is local, and has year of manufacture dealer plates.

    Speaking of Pintos, my paternal grandmother had one when I was little. I vaguely remember it - a hatchback model, I think with the large glass window. She'd later have multiple Cavaliers. In the late 80s, my dad somehow got an urge to buy a Pinto "Cruisin Wagon", and at the time, there were still a few around, I remember looking at them with him. I think my mother objected to it, and that was that.

    I'd forgotten about the "Cruisin Wagon" until you mentioned it. It was a cool vehicle. I'm trying to imagine how a 2015 Focus variant of that would look. I'm thinking that if it were done right, it might draw a lot of attention to the Ford brand, even with limited sales. Maybe Ford should have done it with the previous generation Focus, when they offered a wagon version.

  • Is Tesla A Game Changer?

    @MrShift@Edmunds said: Without a comprehensive service network, Tesla's plan is toast, IMO. Electric cars need service and maintenance just like any other car---and warranty claims, etc. So either Tesla funds all the dealers out of their own money (and I don't think they have enough to do that), or they'll have to authorize franchises. @MrShift@Edmunds said: Without a comprehensive service network, Tesla's plan is toast, IMO. Electric cars need service and maintenance just like any other car---and warranty claims, etc. So either Tesla funds all the dealers out of their own money (and I don't think they have enough to do that), or they'll have to authorize franchises.

    The issue is whether a car company should have the legal right to choose its distribution model, not whether distributing through a traditional authorized dealer network is a wise business decision.

  • Is Tesla A Game Changer?

    New Jersey joined Arizona, Colorado, Virginia and Texas in banning the direct sale of Tesla cars. I think this is just plain wrong. I don't think it's the government's role to decide how companies distribute their products. There may be exceptions that I can't think of at the moment, where safety is an issue, but this law doesn't protect the consumer. On the contrary. This is a case where the state has permitted the dealer lobby to protect its interests, at the expense of its constituents and fair business practices.

    I know that money talks, and that this kind of thing happens all the time, but that doesn't make it right.

  • Is Tesla A Game Changer?

    @Stever@Edmunds said: It gets more interesting. Now the Tesla/Panasonic tie-up is back in the news with reports of a

    "Doubling the stock price seems eminently doable, but I'm not quite willing to play with my own money (note that I passed on APPL at $12.50 and GOOG at $85 too. "

    If we had one $1 for every opportunity we missed we'd be fabulously wealthy.We go with the best information and decision we have at a particular time, and live with the consequences

    The issue isn't what we should have done, but what to do now? Tech companies that have the potential to be major disrupters are particularly difficult to evaluate. For this reason analysts' forecasts aren't too significant. However, the arguments they present can be useful for arriving at a decision.

    One year ago it would have been much more difficult to predict the demand for the Model S, how Consumers Reports would rate it, plans for additional models, how the company would deal with the range anxiety issue, international distribution, how the much larger automakers would respond, and the "giga" battery manufacturing facility. Now we know more, but Tesla's success, and whether it'll be a disrupter, will ultimately rest with how they execute on their plans and the future demand for its vehicles. Its plans to sell batteries for non-automotive applications is particularly hazy. And, let's not forget that Tesla's distribution system poses a threat to dealers.

    Whereas one year ago I didn't give Tesla much chance to become a significant player, now I'm conflicted, as you seem to be. I have more confidence in the company than in the stock, at these levels, because I think a lot of success is already baked into the price of the stock. It hasn't pulled back much or for long because too many people are waiting for just such a pull-back. At some point it's likely to pull back sharply, as Apple and Google, and, recently, Amazon have done.

    I'd love to hear what the executives of the leading auto companies discuss in private meetings.