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Chevrolet Volt
GM isn't going to let a little thing like a lack of money prevent the Volt from coming to market in 2010

General Motors has been in a downward spiral all year with lagging sales and losses in the billions. GM and its cross town rival, Chrysler, asked Congress for monetary assistance to stave off bankruptcy by the end of the year. In the end, the Senate failed to hand over even $14 billion USD to the two struggling Detroit giants.

Now as the White House mulls what plan it will present to help GM and Chrysler stay in business during 2009, GM is stating that it will bring the Chevrolet Volt to market no matter what. This confidence in the Volt program comes despite that fact that GM announced yesterday that it would halt the production on a new engine assembly plant which will produce the 1.4-liter gasoline engine/generator for the vehicle.

Despite the setback with the engine assembly plant, billions of dollars in losses, and a production schedule that leaves little room for error, GM is still committed to bring the Volt -- and the Chevrolet Cruze -- to market by the end of 2010 as it has always stated.

If the engine assembly plant is unable to be completed in time to get the production Chevrolet Volt and Cruze out the door in 2010, GM will be forced to rely on one of its overseas facilities to produce the engine according to the Wall Street Journal. Interestingly enough, the Chevrolet Cruze is already available in overseas markets like South Korea albeit with a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine -- two years ahead of the car’s North American launch.

"Everything that involves heavy cash outlays obviously is under review," said GM spokeswoman Sharon Basel on Wednesday. "Our intent is to still go forward with a new facility bringing that engine to Flint, Michigan."

"Although we are temporarily absolutely stopping all work on everything, the Volt will be out as originally scheduled," added one GM executive.

GM is banking on the Volt to bring it some of the same positive press that has been bestowed upon the Toyota Prius. However, the Prius and its rival, the Honda Insight, have base prices below the $24,000 mark. The Volt, however, will be priced near or will surpass the $40,000 mark before a $7,500 tax credit.

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Just something to think of...
By Darkskypoet on 12/19/2008 12:28:58 AM , Rating: 2
Now, I haven't seen this mentioned much on here, as here seems to have degenerated in to union bashing / union loving... and berating GM etc for bad business practices.

But there are other concerns, I would think.

What other subsidiaries, or firms owned by GM, will go down with GM? And if these are essentially set on the auction block to be liquidated; who other then China would have the cash to buy them in these diseased credit markets?

I mean, quite obviously, the fire sale of GM etc, would be far worse now, then in any normal credit climate, and the sale of that much IP, trade secrets, brains, etc. would be absolutely devastating to all of the rest of the Industrialized world's automakers. Essentially a developing nation such as China, India, etc, could very easily pick up one of the top industrial brain / knowledge trusts in the world. further, they also have the labour environment to make use of it.

Don't get me wrong here, I am not anti developingnation, and assuredly not Anti China, however seeing as how I live in an 'Industrialized Nation', and somewhat still enjoy the benefits of the Post WW2 system that was setup to make us rich, and keep us on top; perhaps we need to look at this strategically.

As much as everyone seems to be berating GM for being stupid, and mismanaged, etc; they do have a hell of a lot of patents, IP, etc that would launch a developing nation's manufacturing industry massively forward, and I would think this is something that should be protected as a national asset, and a strategic one at that.

Second point;

GM also manufacturers much in the way of military items, as well its subsidiaries (satellites, parts, etc) also do the same, or are key cogs in that wheel. Who then will produce these items for the industry, and just what technology, secrets, etc are vulnerable here?

From a militarily strategic standpoint, General Motors factors pretty largely into most vehicle production for the United States, and Allied Militaries, does it not? Is this not an important issue to consider?

Really, General motors the friendly / not so friendly / union hamstrung / pioneering / inept / etc car company that every one is talking about, is not the General Motors, massive industrial / vertically integrated / great cog in American Manufacturing / great chess piece in American Potential Military might / etc that is actually in a place where it may fail completely and utterly.

Please bear in mind, that it was precisely the manufacturing capacity that America was able to bring to bear that helped her to win any war in the 20th century. And yes, with that is the price / burden of excess capacity, which clearly the Big 3 have in spades. Excess capacity however, is useful in markets for a few things (when you are a dominant firm), but further to that, it is very useful in case of war. It is funny to see, especially on this site, the lack of concern for the possible liquidation of one of the largest advanced manufacturing machines in the United States, as well the complete and utter lack of any comments on the strategic importance this 'machine' to the nation as a whole.

Perhaps this is because of the foregone conclusion that the bailout will happen, and that its just trough feeders wanting their due. Whilst I would hope that the government would force some sort of concessions from capital AND labour in this matter, I am not holding my breath.

Still, to let GM go into a possible liquidation to foreign owners because, quite frankly, no one else has the money to buy it in this credit environment is the stupidest thing I will have seen from an industrialized nation in a long time. Perhaps more stupid then going into Iraq in the first place. However, perhaps not all that unexpected when dealing with a Halo regime, and not a true hegemon.

RE: Just something to think of...
By shin0bi272 on 12/19/2008 7:39:53 PM , Rating: 2
please read my post about socialism.

its not all GM's fault no but they are the ones hiring union labor and driving the cost of our cars up 27% and making the resale value 47% lower than a comparable japanese car at trade in time. Then you have the fact that they make cars like the pontiac aztec... that monstrosity on wheels. If you make ugly looking cars that no one wants then your sales go down (what a surprise). When your profits are tied to selling big SUVs and the market for those dries up youre boned.

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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