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GM delivers its latest request for more money

General Motors is teetering on the brink of financial chaos.  GM says that its cash on hand is being depleted to levels where it will no longer be able to operate unless it gets $2B USD in additional loans at the end of March. 

GM is pleading with the government to give it an expanded bailout, while President Obama and his staff are considering cutting GM off and letting it go bankrupt.  GM has warned in the past that it cannot survive bankruptcy, and now it is "warning" the government yet again that it will go bankrupt without intervention and of the consequences that would have on the economy.

Its auditors are growing increasingly antsy as its losses pile up.  They have issued a statement saying they have "substantial doubt" that GM will be able to continue to pay its debts.  Initially they demanded GM repay $6B USD of credit, based on GM's announcement that it could go bankrupt and the company's growing financial problems.  However, GM has brokered a deal with them to stay their hand while it seeks $30B USD in federal aid.

After losing $30.9B USD in 2008, GM's business units are in freefall.  Sales have plunged by millions of units and the company is burning through billions in cash quarterly.  With such a bleak outlook, it correctly warned that auditors Deloitte & Touche would question its ability to make payments, which according to its recent statements, they did.

The information was revealed in reports to U.S. Securities Regulators and a 25-page plea to the government.  The plea explains GM's perspective that it is facing insurmountable hardship from tight credit, troubled suppliers, and sinking demand.  GM hopes that the government will come to its aid, bailing it out once again.

GM is slashing brands left and right, but can't seem to stop its losses.  Even if GM manages to muster enough cash to sustain its operations, it may still go bankrupt at the start of June, when one of its $1B USD convertible debentures matures.  If it cannot find additional funds to make this payment, it will be forced into bankruptcy. 

GM says that a bankruptcy would result in a liquidation of its assets -- in other words there would be no reorganization and no more GM.  It insists that restructuring would be hopeless and consumers would be even less likely to buy from it and that it lacks enough assets to finance a full reorganization.

In order to even have its request for assistance considered, President Obama and his auto task force have demanded that GM convince the United Auto Workers and bondholders to reduce its debt load in order to show that it can be financially viable.  GM writes in the annual Securities Regulators report, "Our future is dependent on our ability to execute our viability plan.  If we fail to do so for any reason, we would not be able to continue as a going concern and could potentially be forced to seek relief through a filing under the U.S. bankruptcy code."

GM's future is now largely in the hands of automotive debt owners.  Its creditors may begin to slash the credit lines of its suppliers, which could further damage GM's sales and production.  Further, the creditors are opposed to the government plan, which asks them to convert $27B USD of the company's debt -- approximately a third of it -- to equity.  They say they want government guarantees on their repayment of the remaining debt or they will make no deal.  Government officials thus far have refused to make this guarantee as they don't want to be forced to pay these billions out of taxpayers' pockets if GM folds.

Globally GM's sales are down 24 percent,from a peak in January 2008 and in the U.S. they are down over 40 percent from their peak in 2007.  GM has lost $82B USD since 2005.  It says it may lose $1B USD for its trouble Saab unit, alone.  GM recently started reporting Saab's revenue separately and hopes to sell the unit, if someone wants to buy it.



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Finally
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 1:21:37 PM , Rating: 2
GM might be able to get back on track.




RE: Finally
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 1:26:10 PM , Rating: 5
Let me also say to the UAW workers. I hope you're happy. Apparently you care more about receiving high pay and extravagant benefits for as long as possible than having a job for the next 30 years.


RE: Finally
By karielash on 3/5/2009 1:31:52 PM , Rating: 5

Yeah, it has nothing to do with appalling management, terrible quality and lousy service.


RE: Finally
By Mojo the Monkey on 3/5/2009 1:45:28 PM , Rating: 4
Its all of the above. LET THEM FAIL. Everyone keeps whining about how many people it will put out of work. Well too bad. S### happens. Newer, more dynamic companies emerge in turbulent markets. Its time to let GM die and leave that market gap for another company to come along and exploit it... WITHOUT MY TAX DOLLARS. Last time I checked, GM doesnt run a public service and it damn well is not going to let me join in on the benefits if they ever get back up to profitability. We're just setting the table for the next crew of idiots.

Oh yeah, and a "loan" to a company that eventually goes into bankruptcy is just a handout.


RE: Finally
By RamarC on 3/5/2009 2:32:18 PM , Rating: 5
I knew this would happen. GM execs are playing poker. They aren't doing hardly anything to try to stay afloat.

They were supposed to shut down Hummer last spring, but still rolled out a new one in the summer.

Saturn could probably stand alone since their products aren't as in-breed as pontiac-buick-chevrolet. But they're not serious about shopping it.

Rumor was a few years back they had a sizeable (perhaps 20%) chunk of Toyota stock. But they're not selling it to raise cash.

Let 'em fail.


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 3:05:45 PM , Rating: 5
The problem with GM trying to shop around the brands they want to sell is that there are no buyers at the moment. A typical buyer might be another large automotive or a private equity group, but both these types of potential buyers are having problems of their own and are not in a position to do a deal like this.

Also, I don't think there's any truth to the rumor that GM owns a sizable amount of Toyota stock. It would be silly of them to hold an investment in a competitor instead of investing in their own business.


RE: Finally
By GaryJohnson on 3/5/2009 8:10:49 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
It would be silly of them to hold an investment in a competitor instead of investing in their own business.


Because big businesses never do anything silly, right? If Toyota had a better ROI that their own company... I think they would invest in it.


RE: Finally
By HaZaRd2K6 on 3/6/2009 12:18:16 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Also, I don't think there's any truth to the rumor that GM owns a sizable amount of Toyota stock. It would be silly of them to hold an investment in a competitor instead of investing in their own business.


Seems to have worked pretty well for Porsche... http://www.autoblog.com/2008/03/03/porsche-ups-own...


RE: Finally
By kextyn on 3/6/2009 8:28:24 AM , Rating: 2
VW is obviously not a competitor to Porsche. The only products they have that do compete are the SUVs which are actually built on the same platform.


RE: Finally
By HaZaRd2K6 on 3/6/2009 9:38:16 AM , Rating: 3
You do realize that Volkswagen owns Audi and Lamborghini, who both make high-end sports cars and supercars, right?


RE: Finally
By x0n3 on 3/7/2009 2:10:48 PM , Rating: 2
I would hardly call Audi and Lamborghini competitors, Porsche produce cars int the 60-250k range where Audi is 30-120K and Lamborghini are 200k+. Audi selling mostly ~60k cars and Porsche selling ~90k, which is a fairly sizable market difference.

That being said, there are two points, one being that they also own Bentley and Bugatti, the former being direct competitor to Porsche, the later not. The second point is that Porsche and VW have always had a close relationship. The Porsche family has headed VW in the past just as the founding family of VW has worked for Porsche. Their relation is historically family based so to compare them to GM owning a stake in Toyota is comparing apples to oranges.


RE: Finally
By Alexvrb on 3/5/2009 7:10:12 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Saturn could probably stand alone since their products aren't as in-breed as pontiac-buick-chevrolet. But they're not serious about shopping it.


This statement proves that you know absolutely nothing about GM's vehicles or lineup. Name a Saturn vehicle, and I can name its twin. Off the top of my head the only one that doesn't have a twin yet *domestically* is the Saturn Astra, but that one is a rebadge from GM Europe - the Opel Astra. Ironically, I think they were better off with the Ion (a twin of the Cobalt), although the Ion did need a better name and a restyling.


RE: Finally
By RamarC on 3/6/2009 3:50:12 PM , Rating: 2
i think it's you that misread the quote. i said saturn isn't as inbred with pontiac-buick-chevy. saturn is mostly rebadged opels so it could be spun off with opel. the vue and the roadster have some spillover but that's a case of pontiac/chevy using a saturn/opel product rather than saturn using a gm-usa product.

so, it would be very difficult to spin off p-b-c independently, but saturn-opel could be worthwhile since a buyer would have sales and manufacturing presence in the states and the eu.


RE: Finally
By Alexvrb on 3/6/2009 8:22:43 PM , Rating: 2
You said "Saturn could probably stand alone since their products aren't as in-breed as pontiac-buick-chevrolet." Now if you wanted to say "oops, this is what I really meant to say", that would be fine. Regardless, it doesn't matter, because even your revised statement is still wrong. Saturn is a GM company, that sells GM cars, that are essentially the same as their other brands but with a different look. Saturns are generally pretty reliable these days, but so are their counterparts in other GM brands.

Only two of Saturn's vehicles are Opel-derived, one of them actually was a Pontiac (Solstice) FIRST and a Saturn (Sky) SECOND, and the other one is the Astra, which is really mediocre. The rest are all shared with the other domestic GM brands. Regardless, they are in the process of globalizing pretty much all of their platforms, to reduce duplicate engineering efforts worldwide - if they survive that long. If they don't, Saturn isn't going to be able to stand alone, except maybe in name, if someone buys whats left of them.

Personally I think they should get additional bailout cash - but they should be allowed/forced to go through restructuring, and there should be additional stipulations, such as many of their executives getting the axe.


RE: Finally
By Alexvrb on 3/6/2009 9:00:08 PM , Rating: 2
Oh I did forget to mention that the Sky/Solstice and even the Opel GT are actually manufactured in Delaware. Further, you note that "opel could be worthwhile since a buyer would have sales and manufacturing presence in the states and the eu". However, if GM goes under, and assuming Opel doesn't go down with them, you lose the "manufacturing presence in the states" which would leave Saturn with only the Astra. They could perhaps import additional cars from overseas. But then they'd be a niche import car company, now wouldn't they?


RE: Finally
By WhiteBoyFunk on 3/9/2009 4:37:12 AM , Rating: 4
You remind me of the perfect politician. You spend more time pointing out errors and demeaning other people than you do addressing the real issues that lie ahead.


RE: Finally
By Nik00117 on 3/6/2009 5:41:49 AM , Rating: 2
I'm with you on that one, GM needs to crash and burn and raise from the ashes, or something else in its place.

Not only that if GM goes bankrupt I have a hunch it might help out my business because they are a huge competitor of mine.

So GM go ahead and burn.

If I was president and GM went "if you don't give us 2B we'll go bankrupt" i'd respond "the bankruptcy court is an 30 minutes south of here, do you want me to call and let them know your coming?"

Chapter 11 it, and see what happens. Let the free market roll govermnet intervention doesn't prevent the problem, it merely delays the final outcome.


RE: Finally
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 3:55:48 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. Let this be the time when America moves on from Unions. I hope they stop as a business, fire every employee, dissolve all unions, and rehire employees based on merit and not seniority. To those who don't make the cut: sorry, but the party is over. You have been overpaid and under worked for years. Your overpayment is the reason why the old concern was unsustainable. Your greed is what caused your demise. I hope you saved money from all the time you were paid far above market value.


RE: Finally
By Lerianis on 3/8/2009 11:08:29 PM , Rating: 1
Oh yeah, move on from unions BACK TO A TIME WHEN BUSINESSES WERE ABLE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF PEOPLE FOR FEAR OF LOSING THEIR JOBS!
I swear, are you IMPEDED! The fact is that most of the workers that GM is still employing (not many) are highly trained technical workers who are specialized in controlling robotic assembly lines.
Contrary to popular belief, it is not 'push a button, let the line do everything itself!'

They have NOT been overpaid and underworked for years. The real problem is that you have been UNDERpaid and OVERworked for years, and just have not realized this fact.


RE: Finally
By Mojo the Monkey on 3/13/2009 1:01:51 PM , Rating: 2
Wrong, its jackass semi-skilled labor. If any idiot with a G.E.D. can go learn it in training in the first 3 weeks on the job, then you dont deserve to be making that ridiculous level of compensation just because the union made it so.

Unions had a nice function before we became a globalized economy. Now manufacturers DO have a choice - outsourcing. The party is over.


RE: Finally
By rudolphna on 3/5/2009 2:59:19 PM , Rating: 1
Ok, are you going to want to pay unemployment for the 3 million lost jobs? Are you going to give all the other automakers money when their parts suppliers go under? Oh yeah, we will start having to use CHINESE made car parts now, because its cheaper. That sounds like a great future. 3 million less US jobs to go around. Not to mention, the company thats probably going to step in will be a chinese car maker, and their cars are COMPLETE SHIT. You think GM is bad? Chinese makers are 1000x worse.


RE: Finally
By Chaser on 3/5/2009 3:15:45 PM , Rating: 2
Despite what GM would like us to believe an established and complex manufacturing, supply, and development infrastructure doesn't just vanish into thin air.


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 3:52:46 PM , Rating: 5
I'm not sure what you're trying to say. But businesses fail all the time and completely cease to exist. Their assets are sold, employees their jobs, and shareholders are wiped out. That's the harsh reality of business.

And I don't see how this won't have a domino effect on many of the large (and small) automotive suppliers. I know of suppliers where the majority of their business is with GM. If GM stops production, these businesses would be instantly wiped out. There is no opportunity for them to simply shift their capacity quickly to another customer, because there are no other customers in a position to buy more!


RE: Finally
By icrf on 3/5/2009 5:27:26 PM , Rating: 4
That is, quite simply, a bad business decision on the part of the supplier. Like personal investments, the only security is through diversification. I've heard of players being wiped out by Walmart because Walmart was their product's only significant retail outlet, and sales ramped up, expanded, and then cut off when Walmart went with someone else for the niche, or decided the niche wasn't making enough money. It quite simply just happens, and that's business. If you have more than 20% (arbitrarily made up) of your business coming from one entity, you're playing with fire.


RE: Finally
By sinful on 3/5/2009 10:23:24 PM , Rating: 1
Obviously you're against globalization then.

In the case of Wal-mart, who exactly would you propose as a different retail outlet? Target? Thanks, you're bankrupt now because they're too small.
The reality is that when you have gigantic corps like Wal-Mart, you basically ensure that those players HAVE to do business with them.

Go read about what happened with Vlasic & Wal-Mart.
Vlasic nearly went bankrupt doing business with Wal-Mart, because not doing business with them would have put them under faster.

It's like you're saying "Auto suppliers should ignore the big 3 and concentrate on smaller companies, like Kia".
Great advice. Unfortunately, Kia is so much smaller that their company can't exist on just Kia... so they have to do business with the big players.

This is always going to be an issue as long as there are a few super-huge companies and everyone else is tiny.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/5/2009 5:41:10 PM , Rating: 5
Many suppliers are already near bankrupt, whether GM fails or not it's going to take increases in car sales to improve the situation much, with cars piling up waiting to be bought.


RE: Finally
By ccmfreak2 on 3/5/2009 3:39:50 PM , Rating: 5
You are absolutely right about chinese cars being worse. Which is exactly why they will not be filling the gap. Ford, Honda, Nissan, Hundai and other smaller chains will step in. No one company will be taking this market share. It will be multiple companies.

I'm not saying that this is going to be easy, but I'll be honest - I don't want my tax dollars going to bail out a poorly managed company. My economic beliefs are very heavily rooted in free-market principles. Right now the market is punishing irresponsible behavior, over-paid union workers & executives, and poor management. Sure, this is going to be painful, but definately teachable (for everyone).

By the way, I thought they were suppose to immediately pay back the government loan they got several months ago if they couldn't produce a plan to become profitable? What happened to that?


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By EglsFly on 3/5/2009 6:34:52 PM , Rating: 4
Sorry, but we've thrown enough money into the fire.
Between them being screwed up and the market tanking, I'd rather hold onto the money we got because if you give them more, your not going to see it back.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:15:52 AM , Rating: 1
This is the mistake so many make. It's not "into the fire" as that is loss of the money, it's completely gone. When you spend it on US manufacturing instead, it comes back as taxes on income and sales.

You act like we're saving money. False. It costs MORE to not keep them afloat, AND we lost some GDP, AND we lost income from foreign sales. Don't let facts get in the way of being greedy and blind though.


RE: Finally
By Solandri on 3/7/2009 5:57:46 PM , Rating: 2
That's not how it works either. If it were, I could spend $100 to buy a gizmo from you, you could use that $100 to buy it back from me, and I could use that $100 to buy it back from you, on to infinity. We could both have an annual income of millions of dollars just for buying the same thing over and over from each other.

No, how it works is that each transaction has to add value. You sell the gizmo to me for $100 because for whatever reason it is only worth $90 to you. I buy the gizmo from you for $100 because for whatever reason it is worth $110 to me. The combined value of both of our possessions has then increased. You used to have a gizmo which you valued at $90 and I used to have $100 cash, for a combined wealth of $190. But now you have $100 cash and I have an item I value at $110, for a combined wealth of $210.

If giving money to GM (or and US manufacturer for that matter) does not result in them creating value (products which people consider worth buying at the price offered), then yes it is the same as throwing money into the fire.

Likewise, if giving money to GM would result in them creating value, then you are correct that it would cost more to not keep them afloat. But it's based on whether or not they can create value - a product which is worth more to customers than what it costs them to make it. A lot of people aren't convinced GM can do that, which is why they're saying let them crash and burn.


RE: Finally
By DryQuiet on 3/5/2009 7:30:25 PM , Rating: 2
Try again. The Japanese manufacturers have plenty of cash on hand. They are not in "big trouble." They are not seeking assistance to stay in business, like GM or Chrysler. They're seeking money that they would use to shore up their U.S. sales by allowing them to extend loans to U.S. consumers, since buyers here are having a hard time borrowing to finance car purchases.


RE: Finally
By sinful on 3/5/2009 10:54:26 PM , Rating: 3
Um, Toyota went from making $38 Billion a year in profit to losing $1.7 Billion a year.

You don't think profits going down close to $40 BILLION dollars in ONE YEAR isn't trouble??

Sure, they can ride it out for a while, but there's no disputing they're in bad shape.


RE: Finally
By Wierdo on 3/6/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:18:15 AM , Rating: 2
Actually no, have you bothered to stay current on the situation or just repeating myths others post on Dailytech?

The funny thing is, you wouldn't even have to be current, this has been ongoing for YEARS.

Start here,
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Toyota+assist...


RE: Finally
By Steve1981 on 3/6/2009 12:20:12 PM , Rating: 2
http://finapps.forbes.com/finapps/jsp/finance/comp...

http://finapps.forbes.com/finapps/jsp/finance/comp...

Well they both definitely have some cash.

Of course there is a big difference in why Toyota can get loans and GM can't: stockholders equity. In Q4 of 2008, Toyota had 118 billion. In Q3 of 2008, GM's stockholder equity was at negative 60 billion.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/7/2009 12:30:32 PM , Rating: 2
They're both suffering losses and burning through their cash. Same with Ford. I feel sorry for these stockholders, though they aren't the only ones taking a loss in the market.


RE: Finally
By Steve1981 on 3/7/2009 2:11:50 PM , Rating: 2
You missed the point completely.

Stockholders equity is effectively the net worth of a company. Toyota has over a hundred billion in stockholders equity; in other words its assets minus its liabilities exceed one hundred billion dollars. Giving a loan to such an entity doesn't entail a heck of a lot of risk.

GM on the other hand has a giant hole where its stockholders equity should be; its assets minus its liabilities is a approximately negative sixty billion dollars. In other words it is less than broke. That isn't the kind of company where financing comes easily, even in the best of times.


RE: Finally
By Steve1981 on 3/7/2009 2:37:14 PM , Rating: 2
One might also notice from their income statements that Toyota is not taking the kind of bloodbath that GM is.

http://finapps.forbes.com/finapps/jsp/finance/comp...

http://finapps.forbes.com/finapps/jsp/finance/comp...


RE: Finally
By ccmfreak2 on 3/6/2009 8:50:12 AM , Rating: 2
The difference is that GM is probably the only one that will go under. The others are hurting - no doubt about that. But when all this clears out, the ones that survive will take over the empty market share. Some of them may begin to pick up some market share sooner with less products to choose from when GM goes under. I never said the others aren't hurting - the whole industry is hurting - but the other companies I mentioned will survive.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:20:40 AM , Rating: 2
They'll survive IF they get assistance. Bankrupt is bankrupt, they are losing money without any end in sight, you would have to assume the economy will turn around very soon and everyone will buy new cars at an increasing rate.

It might be different if we didn't have the credit fiasco too, but we do.


RE: Finally
By ccmfreak2 on 3/6/2009 3:24:21 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
They'll survive IF they get assistance.


Well, yes, but we've already talked about that. They shouldn't get assistance. They need to fail. They are just wasting our tax dollars to continue to be irresponsible. Most of these other companies are surviving.

You act like this "credit fiasco" and the car industry problems are different. How do you think these companies have become so big and survived?

Answer: FINANCING


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/7/2009 12:25:02 PM , Rating: 1
We've talked, and there was no rational conclusion that they shouldn't get assistance. They are not wasting tax dollars, those tax dollars become tax dollars again. What part of this don't you understand? It is not like burying the money or lighting it on fire, it's spent within our economy and circulates back into the tax poll.

What are the alternatives? Bankruptcy is more expensive. If they go out of business we have even more unemployed people on welfare doing nothing productive. You could say maybe they'll get different jobs but where? Unemployment is going up.

Now enter Obama. He's suggesting government money, your taxes, to fund NEW programs to employ people, programs that obviously weren't very important or we'd have been doing them already. Obviously the auto industry IS more important, including GM, based on their worldwide sales %.

Your oversimplified idea fails because of it's simplicity and that it ignores the bigger picture.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/7/2009 12:28:27 PM , Rating: 1
... and further, experts that know far more about this than you, did give the advice to pay out billions already. If it weren't for their advice they'd not have spent dime #1.

The situation could change, in a few days Obama's team will have a better understanding of the situation than they did up until now, and certainly better than either of us. I am only going by presently available information.

Let's see what new info they have to present after their meetings beginning on Monday. Based on new info, I could easily be swayed either way but for now, what has been happening was the right thing to do.


RE: Finally
By doctor sam adams on 3/12/2009 11:16:08 AM , Rating: 2
Just because something is worth doing doesn't mean it's been done already. People have an amazing capacity to stagnate, as the perpetual bailouts of GM demonstrate. Why not use the money that would disappear into GM's interest payments (to be theoretically recirculated into the economy--I think not) and prop up the profitable suppliers or others lower down the chain who would supposedly be hurt by GM's collapse? Why not take that $30 billion and use it to directly pay the vast health coverage that GM promised its workers instead of filtering it through corporate's pockets first?


RE: Finally
By sinful on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By sinful on 3/5/2009 10:49:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
By the way, I thought they were suppose to immediately pay back the government loan they got several months ago if they couldn't produce a plan to become profitable? What happened to that?


They have a plan to be profitable - it's just not going to be instantaneous though. Most of the major changes they've done are slow to take effect.

Basically, they've said they'll be profitable by something like 2010/2011 or so if the economy doesn't continue imploding, but they need loans until then.

In other words, letting them go bankrupt now would be saying "Oh yes, we know you'll be profitable in a year or two, but we'd rather watch our existing investment burn, the rest of the economy go down the toliet, and fork over extra cash due to the massive surge in unemployment."


RE: Finally
By Lerianis on 3/8/2009 11:13:29 PM , Rating: 2
Little problem: we have no idea whether the economy is going to continue imploding or not, and all bets thus far are mainly on the side of it continuing to implode.

We have to realize that propping up a business that is dying from their own mismanagement is not a smart thing to do in ANY economic climate, no matter how much 'damage' it would cause.

Let them go into chapter 11, renegotiate things with the unions and other suppliers, etc., and in the long run.... they will be MUCH better off.


RE: Finally
By Kougar on 3/5/2009 4:48:03 PM , Rating: 3
It would have been significantly cheaper to do so than to spend over $100 Billion to bail out GM... and have them come back asking for several billion more as they are now doing. If we bail them out again we will still be bailing them out by the end of this year.

Secondly I think you are a bit misinformed exactly how much of the parts GM uses in their autos are actually produced here. For example the Jeep Patriot SUV has less American content than the Toyota Sequoia SUV, which is 80% domestic American content... http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123265601944607285...

Not only is GM's position untenable but so is the issue with the suppliers... there are to many of them operating at a loss because there isn't enough demand to keep them going. That can't be fixed except for the weaker ones to leave the market.

Lastly, why is everyone equating Chapter 11 bankruptcy to going out of business? Let them declare bankruptcy, they will still be in the business of selling cars when they emerge from chapter 11.


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 4:54:26 PM , Rating: 5
To a consumer, an automotive OEM in "bankruptcy" is effectively out of business. Sales would tumble drastically, regardless of whether it was Chapter 7 or Chapter 11. Consumers would treat them both the same way - they will stay away.


RE: Finally
By Kougar on 3/5/2009 5:12:48 PM , Rating: 2
I believe this is wrong, but as ya say it is a matter of opinion. I feel consumers are right now avoiding them because they are clearly not going to stay in business in its present form and nobody knows with absolute certainty what they will do.

In my opinion they would regain at least some of their lost demand (& consumer confidence) if consumers saw them in chapter 11 but knew they were not going to vanish and would still be around in the future. Right now people are not sure what brands will remain, which will be sold off, and which get the axe. There is little point in buying a Saab or Saturn or Pontiac if the brand is dead and parts for them will become expensive, that kills the car's value.

The current situation is simply untenable, GM has no plan to stay solvent or even reach positive cash flow status. Even if they axed almost of their brands, they have innumerable, huge levels of debt they must pay to support each of these brands for the next 5 to 10+ years. They can't flick a switch and tear up their contracts with consumers and dealerships.

You could be right regarding the consumer standpoint, but any business major with accounting/finance background should understand they can't walk away from any brands they cut. GM is going to go under, and it is best if they do so now instead of later this year when the American public grows more outraged over these ultimatums by GM for more bailouts "or else".

In my opinion I wouldn't buy a car from them right now... but if they were in chapter 11 and I knew they would remain a going concern, then I wouldn't hesitate to buy a vehicle from them as long as the brand I chose was also staying a going concern. The longer they prolong this, the worse it is going to get for them.


RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 6:22:29 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
To a consumer, an automotive OEM in "bankruptcy" is effectively out of business. Sales would tumble drastically


As apposed to the booming sales they have now ?


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 11:06:50 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
As apposed to the booming sales they have now ?
As long as sales are not zero, they can still fall, right?

Are you trying to make some kind of point, or are you just trying to be a jerk?


RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/6/2009 3:37:03 PM , Rating: 2
Look you are just not being realistic at all.

Their sales are nowhere NEAR to the point where they can even remotely sustain operations as a business right now. Can we agree with that ?

If you say yes, which you should, then tell me what's the difference between not enough sales, and not enough sales ? No net difference.

Chapter 11 or not, the people have spoken. They are not buying new cars, especially GM vehicles. Saying if they go Chapter 11 sales will go down is the dumbest argument you could have made. Where has your common sense gone Tom ?

quote:
As long as sales are not zero, they can still fall, right?


Are YOU trying to make a point ? Because this brilliant gem of logic somehow fails to validate your argument. Any number of sales above zero isn't a measure of GM staying viable as a business.

And my last point, which I pray to god you will finally understand, NO amount of sales matters because THEY ARE SELLING VEHICLES FOR LESS THAN IT COSTS THEM TO BUILD BECAUSE OF THE UNIONS !


RE: Finally
By MadMan007 on 3/5/2009 11:35:04 PM , Rating: 3
Too few people understand Ch 11 versus Ch 7 even if it's explained to them. Al the idiotsumer hears is 'bankruptcy.'


RE: Finally
By Chernobyl68 on 3/5/2009 7:36:06 PM , Rating: 3
Jeep is not a GM brand. it belongs to dodge/chrysler I believe...


RE: Finally
By Alexvrb on 3/5/2009 7:41:15 PM , Rating: 2
You're being misleading, in that you're cherry picking. It might not be intentional, but it's like saying that you have a Phenom 9850 that clocks at 4Ghz on air. So clearly all Phenom 9850s are superior at overclocking compared to those puny Core 2s.

http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/staticfiles/DOT/NHTSA/Tra...

Overall, the domestics, including GM, use FAR more "domestic content" than Toyota. The majority of Toyota models are produced with 0 or 5% domestic content. They round to the nearest 5%, so 5% could mean they use "domestic" wheels and tires! There are a few cases where GM vehicles have no domestic content, such as the Astra which is a rebadged Opel, or the G8 which is a Holden. But by and large they vastly dwarf the imports in terms of domestic content.

By the way, "domestic" in this case means US and/or Canada. That's the way the government mandated it. This means its hard to pinpoint exactly how much content is sourced from the US only, for *any* of the manufacturers. But that doesn't change the fact that the domestic automakers draw the majority of their parts from US suppliers, and imports on average draw the minority of their parts from US suppliers. Of course, that information, and that link above to that neat table, both were in the article you linked.

If anyone is outsourcing with a vengeance these days, its actually the aftermarket parts suppliers, not the OE suppliers. I should know, most of the parts I sell these days are built in China. Independent shops and DIYers demand cheaper and cheaper crap, and the aftermarket as a whole is forced to comply lest discount auto chains (who went that route long ago) steal all their market share.


RE: Finally
By Kougar on 3/6/2009 4:15:40 PM , Rating: 2
Regarding "cherry picking", I was giving a single example from the article to support my point. I was attempting to point out it depends on the model, but there there is no shortage of foreign brands with higher American content in their production than what the general public perceives to be a typical Americam auto. I'll make one of my own: If I bought a Toyota Tundra would that be any less American than buying a Chevy Silverado? Toyota builds the Tundra here, and there is only a 5% content difference between them.

My point is, blanket statements about "American" cars are in general misleading or plain wrong. Quite a few foreign brands produce their cars in the US using US workers which the media seems to outright ignore. And quite a few "American" car manufacturers build their cars up in Canada or elsewhere before selling them locally. It cuts both ways.

Thanks for the info regarding "domestic" including Canada, I wasn't aware of that. And yes, you are very right most part suppliers are getting their parts from overseas. I thought that was factored in to the domestic content numbers.


RE: Finally
By Alexvrb on 3/6/2009 8:48:53 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, a single (cherry picked) example. Oh, how about that Prius? Or the Yaris? Those are 0% domestic content. My point, once again, is that your examples (and mine for that matter), are just that. Examples. Maybe you did it with good intentions, but you completely failed to point out that by and large Toyota (and others) use mostly non-domestic parts and construction. That's why I made an overall assessment, and I'll reiterate it again:

GM, Chrysler, and Ford, overall use far more US-sourced content than any of the imports, even the darling Toyota. They also employ many more Americans directly in their plants, offices, and dealerships. When you follow the parts supply chain, they also indirectly employ a great number of Americans whose jobs are also hanging in the balance. If even GM alone fails, its going to really sting.

If you think the other manufacturers are going to swoop in and give all of these people jobs, you are sorely mistaken.


RE: Finally
By croc on 3/5/2009 6:20:11 PM , Rating: 5
Let me tell a wee short story. After WWII, there was an American, Dr. W. Edwards Deming I believe, who couldn't find work in the USA. So he outsourced himself to Japan, where he found a willing audience for his theories of manufacturing management. One of the companies that he lectured to is today known as Toyota. Dr. Deming's photograph is in the Toyata HQ lobby, alongside of the company founder. Deming's portrait is larger...

His theory of total quality management was embraced by most emerging Japanese corporations after WWII, but he couldn't get a look-in from the USA. Go figure.


RE: Finally
By bobsmith1492 on 3/5/2009 6:44:54 PM , Rating: 2
His theories made their way back to the US in the 80s and American auto quality is on par with or tops Japanese autos.


RE: Finally
By Fireshade on 3/6/2009 6:33:39 AM , Rating: 2
His theories go way further than product quality. They extend to production and management systems.


RE: Finally
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 4:10:03 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah right. You keep buying POS domestic cars. The market has judged, see how well these "high quality" cars are selling. Can't even sell them at a loss. LMAO.


RE: Finally
By 91TTZ on 3/6/2009 10:29:57 AM , Rating: 2
That story is inaccurate. It isn't true that he couldn't find work in the USA. He was already successful and well known in the USA before he went to Japan. In fact, he worked under General Douglas MacArthur for the US Deparment of the Army to go to Japan to help with their census, and after the Japanese saw the work that he was doing they asked him to help with their quality control techniques.

Also, it's not true that his methods weren't accepted by US companies. Ford asked him to serve as a consultant to help with their business.


RE: Finally
By mmntech on 3/5/2009 2:09:24 PM , Rating: 5
Aside from the fact that the CAW thinks $70/hour wages are directly comparable to the $40/hour they get in Japan and Europe, which is still darn good pay for unskilled labour. The bad management is mostly to blame but the unions aren't completely off the hook.

The problem is that GM has the gov't by the balls because they do employ a lot of people, both directly and indirectly. So to the powers that be, it's either bail them out now or fork out billions in EI and welfare later. However, GM has shown no clear interest in restructuring at all. We already bailed them out now they want more, and they're just going to keep asking for more ad infinitum. They believe that if they screw up, there will always be that safety net. It's a lost cause. I believe it is better to just spend the money on EI rather than spending $30 billion annually to keep GM alive.


RE: Finally
By RamarC on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 2:57:57 PM , Rating: 5
That's just actual pay though. The total benefits are far higher. Over 6 months ago they reported that the average was around $70-75/hr in total compensation. Regardless, $30/hr to push a button,bolt on wheels, or drive a forklift is a bit absurd. There are probably people who design the cars who make less than those building them. Who do you think has more of an education and is more irreplaceable?


RE: Finally
By SlyNine on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 3:31:02 PM , Rating: 5
...I am not sure what you're trying to say.

FIT is quite correct in pointing out the cost to GM to have these workers to their labor - take-home pay is less than half of what GM actually sees as their labor cost.

The modern assembly plant requires essentially unskilled labor. The actual work that these people do could be done by basically anyone...it is very simple labor that isn't worth anything close to what GM is paying for it - $15 an hour would probably get you the quality of worker you needed to do the job efficiently and effectively. And less than half of the benefits to go with it.


RE: Finally
By ccmfreak2 on 3/5/2009 3:55:40 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly, break your contract with the Labor Union and slowly begin rehiring individuals one plant at a time. It doesn't take $30 - $70 /hr to do this work. I'm not saying pay minimum wage, but you can easily come up with a reasonable figure somewhere in there. How's that for restructuring?


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 4:03:41 PM , Rating: 2
It's called fantasy land. The reality is that if they "break their contract" with the unions, they end up with a strike that costs them billions in earnings and contributes to them losing more market share. If they could simply ignore the unions, they would have done so long ago.


RE: Finally
By ccmfreak2 on 3/5/2009 4:22:26 PM , Rating: 2
Well, you lose market share if you go bankrupt, and you lose market share if you break your contract. At least this way you can survive. Sure, the Unions will take them to court, but that will take a few years for it to go through the system. By then, they just might be back on their feet, regaining some of the lost market share, pay the fines for breaking the contract, and be on their way. At least this way, you can pay for the loss of billions by paying people half of what you would pay the Union workers. This would be recovered relatively quickly once the cars start rolling out again.


RE: Finally
By icrf on 3/5/2009 5:36:50 PM , Rating: 2
I also think that there's a bit of a surplus in produced vehicles, so a strike won't have quite the stinging effect.

And the problem isn't that you could pay them $15 an hour instead of $30. It's that you're signing on that you will pay them full health coverage for the rest of their lives, whether they work at the plant or not. Those are the costs that are different between GM and Nissan and those are the costs that need to be addressed.


RE: Finally
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 10:40:32 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
I also think that there's a bit of a surplus in produced vehicles, so a strike won't have quite the stinging effect.


Savvy companies do that on purpose. Caterpiller, for example, builds up a good inventory of product right before a union contract runs out - because they know the union always strikes. So then the strike happens, Cat puts some managers and office workers on the lines to keep them at least moving, and they sell down their inventory.

Meanwhile, the union workers are living on the stipends the union pays them while on strike - which is, what, half or less of their normal salary?

Months later, Cat and the union come to an agreement, and the union has this huge party about how they "won." While Cat didn't see any drop in sales, and actually saved an assload of pay while the union was on strike - and while the union workers who "won" are going to see their total income that year be an aqwful lot less than it should have been.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 6:20:48 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
It's not the current UAW contract that is the problem, it is the number of years GM has been around coupled with a low worker to retiree ratio. Companies like Toyota haven't been here for 100 years.


So there is some guy on GM's payroll right now that's 100+ years old ?

That's a silly theory man. Toyota isn't as old as GM, sure, but it's certainly not a young company. If they were throwing away money to retiree's as much as GM is, we would have seen it by now.

quote:
We as a country need to tighten our belts, but not stab the elderly in the back out of greed.


Private retirement plans and 401-K's are taking a nose dive right now because they depend on the stock market. If we keep putting the entire country in debt to bail out GM and banks, there are going to be a LOT of elderly hurting. And it doesn't have a damn thing to do with greed.


RE: Finally
By sinful on 3/5/2009 10:58:22 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
That's a silly theory man. Toyota isn't as old as GM, sure, but it's certainly not a young company. If they were throwing away money to retiree's as much as GM is, we would have seen it by now.


Are you joking???

GM's #1 cost is healthcare!

Go look it up!


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:22:21 AM , Rating: 2
Yep, health and retirement. It's amazing how many people comment without anything but urban myths on their side. They hear nonsense and repeat it then think hey if it's 3 against one let's not let facts get in the way of a good argument.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:23:57 AM , Rating: 2
Toyota has not been in the US for anywhere near as long, even today a much smaller ratio of people are retired from Toyota in the US compared to still working there. Perhaps you should do your own fact-checking if you won't accept someone else telling you.


RE: Finally
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 4:18:04 PM , Rating: 3
Where have I ever said I want them to get bailed out. I want them to declare bankruptcy.


RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 5:56:46 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Yea, but do you hear your what you are saying. You are trying to blame GM needing 10s of billions of dollars on employee's making 30$ an hour.


Sigh..

It's not just PAY. It's Gm's insane retirement and pension plans and Insurance. GM is literally giving BILLIONS to people who are NOT working !

Add it all up, and they are selling vehicles for less than they spend to make them. I ask you, is this a good business model ?

If you don't know what you are talking about please shut up. There is already enough BS on this issue from so called "experts" without Internet amateurs getting involved.


RE: Finally
By Doormat on 3/5/2009 6:50:38 PM , Rating: 5
This concept is nothing new to me.

I live in Vegas. A job as a dealer in a casino can bring home $75,000-$100,000 per year. The supervisor (as someone who didn't receive tips) would make less than that. Starting management would make less than that.

Same thing goes for the "club scene" in Las Vegas. Bouncers at clubs would bring home $150,000-$300,000/yr because they'd charge every guy $100 to get into the club (the ladies get in free of course), and they'd always have their hands out expecting money for just being there once you're actually in the club.

A civil engineer graduating from college would start around $45,000.

What does that tell you about rewarding folks who work hard for a difficult degree versus low skill jobs.


RE: Finally
By on 3/6/2009 11:30:36 AM , Rating: 2
You are GAY, just an FYI.


RE: Finally
By RamarC on 3/6/2009 4:12:09 PM , Rating: 2
the $70/hour figure has been debunked because it includes pension funding costs of people that are ALREADY RETIRED. GM tallied up all their labor costs including pension funding and divided it by the number of active workers. That's not a per worker cost.

The actual burdened cost of active workers is more in line with most other companies. 25-30% is typical for fringe benefits at ANY BIG COMPANY. Pension funding is another 10-15% which is in line with the handful of companies that still have it.

Pension funding is one thing killing GM (like many other companies) because they dipped into the funds and with the financial markets decline they now have to pay more into it to maintain adequate funding. Also, pension funding is usually considered a first-class debt (just like payroll) and can't be deferred. So, the company has to pay it before other expenses and it's a drain every month of operation.


RE: Finally
By abscoder on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By Parhel on 3/5/2009 3:41:38 PM , Rating: 5
That's exactly right. Those figures were the "cost of labor" which includes everything you mentioned plus employer side taxes, benefits costs, 401(k) match, and many more items.

$28 - $33 is still too much money. I could find people willing and capable of doing the job for half that much.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/5/09, Rating: -1
RE: Finally
By Nfarce on 3/5/2009 11:40:26 PM , Rating: 3
Actually I'd like to know where a "livable wage" stops beyond $30/hr for unskilled labor. If people on this blog have all the answers, then why aren't they starting their own damned companies and paying people freaking $50/hr to produce widgets?

Yeah. That's what I thought.


RE: Finally
By drzoo2 on 3/6/2009 12:28:56 AM , Rating: 4
Your absolutely right. My cousin who bolts wheels on GM cars in Buffalo make double what I make......with my Engineering degree and all.

Your right. Increase everyones wages to $25/hour. Hope you like your $15 happymeal. Somebody has to pump gas. If you don't like it. Better yourself.

z


RE: Finally
By JKflipflop98 on 3/6/2009 8:14:14 AM , Rating: 3
I'm an electronics engineer at Intel. I build the smallest, most complex devices that mankind can produce. I am at the absolute bleeding edge of several sciences at once.

Some kid at GM gets paid more than I do to bolt lugnuts onto a wheel.

That's F'n insane.


RE: Finally
By Lerianis on 3/8/2009 11:16:54 PM , Rating: 2
No, it isn't insane when you think about that they are doing HIGH-IMPACT PHYSICAL LABOR, which is much more intensive than you sitting in front of your desk on your ass making calculations and slowly getting fat is!

I tell you what: trade jobs with these guys for ONE DAY, and then whine to me about how they are being overpaid... you won't think that once you realize how achy and everything these people are at the end of the day.

The only thing F'ing insane is your attitude towards people who, when you take into account the stress put on their bodies, are actually doing MUCH harder work than you are.


RE: Finally
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:31:18 AM , Rating: 1
You choose what to do for a living, where to live, where to apply for a job. Don't ever think that sitting on you butt at a university somewhere till you have a title automatically entitles you to a better standard of living, you have to actually DO MORE VALUABLE WORK. Actually do, not claim you deserve.

How utterly backwards you are. The majority of jobs that need done do not require higher levels of education, but the majority of families do require enough money to have a place to live, decent food to eat, a car to drive to work, etc. If you can't manage to make more money than an unskilled laborer, you have failed to find the right job or to get the right education to have skills in demand, have nobody to blame but yourself.


RE: Finally
By nevermore781 on 3/5/2009 3:45:08 PM , Rating: 2
Dude...thats called an average. I think 70 sounds about accurate when you figure how much health care costs and pensions and everything.


RE: Finally
By GotDiesel on 3/6/2009 1:13:15 PM , Rating: 1
$70/hour for unskilled labor ? you gotta be shitting me..
I have 2 degrees and a masters and I don't even make that..
damn.. they DO need to go down the toilet... and fast


RE: Finally
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 2:24:39 PM , Rating: 5
The quality isn't bad any more. But it's also hard to maintain quality when you're paying out the butt for labor. If you want your car to sell you have to be able to price it competitively. If your labor costs a lot, you have to reduce your R&D budget and/or your parts quality. Getting rid of the high pay would go a long way to helping GM compete because it would free up money for other areas like product development.

As far as the service, that depends on the dealer. Many of which GM doesn't own. Personally I've had good experiences the few times I've been to the dealer (since I rarely go). But some dealers are good, some are bad.

As far as the management, there's better management teams and there's worse.


RE: Finally
By MonkeyPaw on 3/5/2009 10:36:00 PM , Rating: 3
Don't forget the union employment rules as a real killer. Where I work, there are many union employees, and it's a real eye-opener for how work gets "done." Have a guy that's got attitude problems or poor work quality? Well, you can't just fire him--you have to follow the union contract, which typically involves many write-ups, suspensions, and demotions before you can actually axe a guy that ain't worth a crap. By then, he's screwed up so much stuff, and he has spread his attitude problems to his "brothers." Don't follow the chain of shame, and you get grievances filed against you. If that's not enough, then take a look at who gets to do a particular job. Not necessarily the most qualified person, but the guy with the most seniority! So most of the time you don't have the best guy for the job anywhere in the workforce. Basically, our most senior level workers are slow and grumpy, and they are basically untouchable. The union rep calls these workers a "quality product."

Seriously, one day at work some union guys were in the office, looking at porn on a WORK computer. Not only were they looking at it, they were loudly talking about it, using obscene words. This isn't a laid back office, either. The next day, these same guys were complaining about how they got in trouble, and how ridiculous it is that they can't do whatever they want. They talked about going on strike all the time. It was pathetic.


RE: Finally
By bhieb on 3/5/2009 2:27:32 PM , Rating: 5
Yeah that same poor management has grown the company for years to the level that it is almost too big to fail, all while playing with a stacked deck called the UAW. I just don't get the argument. Yes they have management issues, but to grow as big as they are with the massive labor anchor that has been tied around their neck, is commendable from a pure business management perspective. But every ship will sink it you fill it up enough.

Don't get me wrong they need to fail, it is not the taxpayers job to bail out retail companies.

And as stated in another post below. I really do look forward to one day interviewing employees only to see GM or UAW as previous employment, and just laugh and move to the next candidate. These people have proven time and again that they will quite literally take every penny the company has if it serves their purposes.


RE: Finally
By tcsenter on 3/5/2009 10:26:52 PM , Rating: 5
Management did the best it could given the self-serving intransigence of neanderthal unions. How are you supposed to elevate quality beyond the 1970s when the union deliberately made modernization cost-prohibitive?

The UAW Jobs Bank program was forced down the automakers throats by the union for the stated purpose of making it cost-prohibitive for automakers to modernize their plants. Read that again: the stated purpose was to make it cost-prohibitive for US automakers to compete.

The union's solution to foreign competition was to lobby for protectionist tariffs on imports, threaten and intimidate anyone who purchased imports and attack their patriotism, disparage Japanese people bordering on racism for their work ethic, ban foreign cars from the parking lots of union halls and business offices, and to prohibit auto-related credit unions from making consumer loans on imported vehicles.

I kid you not, West Side Auto Employees Credit Union in Flint, Michigan (now named Financial Plus), prohibited loans on imported vehicles. The union banned foreign cars from the parking lots of any properties it controlled and were notorious for leaving owners of imports a nice little present such as slashed tires or just verbally assaulting the owner (women with children in tow, little old ladies, made no difference).

When it deliberately (thanks to the union) costs three times as much to "buy" the union's cooperation on modernization than would be saved by those improvements, how the hell are you supposed to get beyond 1970s quality and 1960s manual labor utilization rates? You don't, that was the point, and the union damned well knew it. The UAW has freely admitted it did everything in its power to prevent the Big Three from adopting technology and modernize their factories, unless the companies "paid" the union for this 'privilege' by fatting union coffers and supporting indefensible programs like the UAW Jobs Bank.

The UAW is still making the argument that Americans should take a hit to their pocket books so that the UAW doesn't have to. Disgusting.


RE: Finally
By callmeroy on 3/6/2009 9:19:26 AM , Rating: 2
Its hard to debate the management part , if management was awesome one would logically assume the company would be in at least somewhat better shape --- I don't understand the quality and service arguments cropping up since the public has known GM is in trouble. Of course with thousands of dealerships in the US alone -- obviously some will be better than others. My point to this -- though I have a dodge now (which I loathe, detest, hate, can't wait to get rid of it) the vast majority of my cars have been GM vehicles and I never had 1/10th the issues in quality with them than with Dodge....I've owned two camaro's through the years and with the exception of the clock not keeping correct time in my Z-28, I had no complaints with either . Service at my local GM dealers was also very good (though I have yet to have better service than when I owned a Mazda -- those guys were so service oriented it was almost annoying to me...almost).

So maybe I'm just lucky I don't know or maybe its so easy to compute "Well company crashing MUST equal horrible service and quality" that everyone jumps on the band wagon without any real facts to back that up or life experience.

NOW that all said -- yeah let them file already, when is this country going to get it through their collective heads that WE ARE TOO FAR GONE FOR RECOVERY NOW....a collapse MUST occur, companies must file for bankrupcy, that market can not recover at this point until such events occur.

Pumping tax payer dollars is making it pro-longed and just going to dig the hole deeper....our kids and grand kids will be paying for what is going on right now.


RE: Finally
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 1:55:16 PM , Rating: 5
That kind of common sense often doesn't play well here...

As I have noted, GM (and Ford & Chrysler) have more than one problem...mismanagement, bad sales models, and crippling union contracts. All of which they managed to succeed in spite of when the economy was good.

I don't have any numbers in front of me, but it is my belief that thier biggest problem is the unions. They're paying massive benefits, way more than other industries get (anyone else in an industry where there are "job banks" that pay people who aren't actually working?), and quite frankly the benefits & wages paid to union auto workers is way more than the labor is worth...it's not a job that is worth what the big 3 have to pay for it. Which is not only why they are forced to ship work to other countries, costing local US jobs, but also why they are in the dire straits they now find themselves in (with apologies to Mark Knopfler).

Yes, the big 3 have problems besides the unions...but I have to believe that the union problem totally eclipses the others. And soon those union workers will have no jobs at all - and/or will have to adjust to working for fair market wages & benefits when someone else buys the chapter 11 GM, and then abolishes the unions.


RE: Finally
By PitViper007 on 3/5/2009 2:34:16 PM , Rating: 2
The new owners wouldn't abolish the Unions, as they are not really an entity of the company, but an organization of the workers themselves, or used to be. What the new owners, or even the old if they managed to hold onto the company, would be able to do is get out from under the stifling contracts that they have with their Unions/workers. They could then get back on their feet with a more realistic overhead cost and be better able to compete with the foreign manufacturers.


RE: Finally
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 3:27:05 PM , Rating: 3
I doubt that very much. I think whoever buys them is going to clearly see the penalty for trying to operate in a union environment, and will reinvent the brand in a union-free design. Copy Honda and Mitsubishi etc. and the way they run their American plants...the economy is smacking them around too, but they're a lot better off than the big 3.


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 3:42:14 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
but they're a lot better off than the big 3
Yes, mainly because they benefit from a very large local protected market in Japan. You see the same situation in Europe. This gives these companies a very strong financial base to expand their operations overseas, especially here in the US.

Now I'm not saying that the US companies are as well run as some of their Japanese counterparts. But in addition to that advantage, they benefit from a very uneven playing field.

And finally, I will remind again that even Toyota, Honda, etc. are in trouble with the current economic crisis. In a better position to weather the storm, yes; but still in dire straits due to a massive loss of sales/revenue.


RE: Finally
By nevermore781 on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 4:05:44 PM , Rating: 4
GM can't import cars into Japan because of very large import tariffs. Same for Europe. Didn't you ever wonder why the US doesn't export any cars? It's because many governments in developed nations protect their own domestic auto industries with import tariffs.


RE: Finally
By Beno on 3/5/2009 4:55:32 PM , Rating: 1
so the US should do the same about import tariffs as well


RE: Finally
By lco45 on 3/5/2009 6:32:02 PM , Rating: 3
No, the US should apply more pressure on Japan to reduce its tariffs.
The US and many other countries have spent the past 50 years trying to reduce the impediments to international trade; it would be a shame to undo all that work.

Luke


RE: Finally
By Jypster on 3/5/2009 10:48:26 PM , Rating: 2
Australia imports Chryslers. Not a great amount, I don't have the figures, but enough that they have run some adds on TV for a few models.

I looked really hard into a 300 as I have been a Crysler man since the 70's when they used to know as Valiants here. Two things made me not get it. Price of spare parts, even compared to Europe imports are just plain silly and the build quality-finish was just a bit lacking compared to local or other imports. Not by much and better than the jeeps I have owned but for a car costing $73K you expect better. Just my person opinion and I still do want one.


RE: Finally
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 4:20:44 PM , Rating: 3
Not to mention that Toyota is seeking government assistance from Japan in order to survive as well.

Honda and Toyota are supported by the Japanese government.


RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 5:59:38 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Now I'm not saying that the US companies are as well run as some of their Japanese counterparts. But in addition to that advantage, they benefit from a very uneven playing field.


Did you just pull that tired talking point out of your ass ?

Tom that dog doesn't hunt anymore. Uneven playing field..bah!

I'm convinced you're either a union stooge or a GM employee. How you can STILL defend them at this point defies all logic.


RE: Finally
By TomZ on 3/6/2009 7:57:41 AM , Rating: 1
Are you saying that Japan and Europe don't have stiff import tariffs that make importing cars into those regions economically impossible?

Not to mention that in Europe and Asia, healthcare is paid for by the state, whereas in the US it is paid by the employer. Big difference there, as well.

No, I'm not a "union stooge or a GM employee." And I'm not an idiot either.


RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/6/2009 3:21:37 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Are you saying that Japan and Europe don't have stiff import tariffs that make importing cars into those regions economically impossible?


GM sold GLOBALLY as many total vehicles as Toyota did in 2008. So yes, I am saying that.

Toyota made 17 billion. GM lost 28 billion. Sorry bub, that ain't because of tariffs.

quote:
No, I'm not a "union stooge or a GM employee." And I'm not an idiot either.


Hey you can lie to me, but don't lie to yourself.


RE: Finally
By SlyNine on 3/5/09, Rating: -1
RE: Finally
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 3:32:29 PM , Rating: 5
No...they also would have to get out from under suffocating pension plans and ridiculous union pork like "job banks." But pay cuts would be a start.


RE: Finally
By Schrag4 on 3/5/2009 4:44:49 PM , Rating: 5
I just love this argument. Unless the suggestion fixes ALL OF the problem then it's considered worthless (in this case, since pay cuts won't account for the 10's of billions then pay shouldn't be cut). Sounds kinda like Obama and friends saying that since offshore drilling won't eliminate our dependence on foreign oil COMPLETELY, we shouldn't be drilling at all. Simply a stupid, stupid argument.

<sarcasm>You know what, cutting out the trips to McDonalds won't pay for my bills completely, so I shouldn't brown-bag it for lunch. Oh, and that new TV I've been eyeing is less than my monthly bills too, so, since NOT buying it won't account for what I owe, then, well, I should still get the TV.</sarcasm> This argument can be used to make all kinds of really bad decisions! (and I'm sure it gets used every day in Washington D.C.)


RE: Finally
By SlyNine on 3/5/2009 9:24:30 PM , Rating: 1
It's the only one you guys focus on. The funny thing is, its the only problem that actually can help the country as it is in sorts a stimulus.

I'd like an accurate and NONE biased fact sheet on just how much money goes to the labor.


RE: Finally
By Motoman on 3/6/2009 11:51:43 AM , Rating: 4
...how about you start with a "unbiased" grammar cheatsheet?

Anyway, if you look around the web I think you'll find there's a general consensus that labor accounts for about 7% of the MSRP of a car.

Now before you open your mouth and barf about how "it's only 7%" blah blah, let's actually look at some numbers. You know...in an unbiased manner.

Say GM charges $40,000 MSRP as an average. I don't know what the average actually is, but for this exercise it's not that important. 7% of $40k is $2,800.

...come to think of it, i'm not sure that the 7% includes pensions and such, but anyway, let's assume it does.

So if GM cut their labor cost in half, they'd save $1,400 per car. And before you start bleating about "it's only $1,400, that's not going to solve the BILLIONS of dollars they are losing blah barf" let's look at exactly 2 more numbers.

In 2008, GM sold 8.35 million cars worldwide. In a year that we know pretty much sucked ass for car sales.

So take that 8.35 million, and multiply it by $1,400 to get the last number we need to look at, which is $11,690,000,000.

You might have a hard time understanding a number that big, so let me spell it out - that's $11.6 billion. Eleven point six billion dollars could be saved by cutting labor costs in half.

I mentioned earlier about how the average car MSRP doesn't even matter that much - if the average MSRP was $20k, the labor cost saving is nearly $6 billion.

You're talking about massive amounts of money, even though the labor cost is "only" 7% of MSRP.

So for anyone who thinks there's any merit whatsoever to the argument that labor cost is too small a portion of the overall cost of production to make a difference, please STFU.


RE: Finally
By phxfreddy on 3/5/2009 3:26:18 PM , Rating: 2
It is the people in charge who love power above all else. This is a political demographic. Of course the workers act and vote like union thugs and that does not help at all.


RE: Finally
By bigbubba on 3/5/2009 5:05:41 PM , Rating: 3
Ya, the workers have their own damn island golf resort in the great lakes for god's sake. They clearly get WAY too much money. They are screwing up their own job security, so I have no sympathy for them. I am very brand loyal to Chevrolet, but if they are going to do it to themselves than I will not back them up. Unions have their positives, but you cannot expect to get everything that you want all the time.


RE: Finally
By lco45 on 3/5/2009 6:37:32 PM , Rating: 2
Brand loyalty ain't what it used to be, especially when it seems like every brand out there is owned by another brand, or rebadging another brand's cars.

Luke


RE: Finally
By bigbubba on 3/6/2009 2:58:40 PM , Rating: 2
I disagree, especially with brands that have been around for almost 100 years.


RE: Finally
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 4:52:31 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah Chevrolet in the 50s was a car worth buying. Now the name is used on everything from garbage to the Corvette. The brand itself has no meaning.


RE: Finally
By lagomorpha on 3/15/2009 6:27:17 PM , Rating: 2
"Let me also say to the UAW workers. I hope you're happy. Apparently you care more about receiving high pay and extravagant benefits for as long as possible than having a job for the next 30 years. "

To be fair it isn't the UAW workers themselves that are causing the union to be such a hindrance, its the people in charge of the union itself. Unions are NOT for the benefit of workers any more, they're in it for themselves. Many unions even have non-compete contracts their workers sign so they can't work in the industry in the same area if they leave the union.


RE: Finally
By Golgatha on 3/5/2009 3:13:49 PM , Rating: 3
In other news, American taxpayers say, "Don't let the door hit you on the way out!". Seriously, their past performance indicates any kind of handout will just delay the inevitable. Bankruptcy now instead of later I say.


RE: Finally
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 6:05:04 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
In other news, American taxpayers say, "Don't let the door hit you on the way out!". Seriously, their past performance indicates any kind of handout will just delay the inevitable. Bankruptcy now instead of later I say.


Exactly. Don't go away mad GM, just go away.

They got the first payments of bailout with absolutely NO plan in place for how they would spend it. Now they dare to come back, the third time, and threaten us with closing if they don't get more money ? And I STILL don't see what their plan is for how they are going to spend their way out of this on OUR BACKS !

As a taxpayer I DEMAND to know how taking bailout after bailout is going to make them viable. So far all they have done is close plants, dealerships, and layoff tens of thousands of people. All of that would happen anyway with Chapter 11, so honestly GM, what have you done with our money ?


RE: Finally
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 5:00:13 PM , Rating: 2
100% agree. Let's just do this now for the sake of our children. We shouldn't burden them with this problem only 10 times worse.


RE: Finally
By lco45 on 3/5/2009 5:37:50 PM , Rating: 1
Agreed.

BTW, since when did DT become the Wall Street Journal.

Get back to tech news FFS.

Luke


RE: Finally
By walk2k on 3/5/2009 7:53:28 PM , Rating: 2
Guess not.

quote:
GM says that a bankruptcy would result in a liquidation of its assets -- in other words there would be no reorganization and no more GM .


RE: Finally
By majorpain on 3/6/2009 8:30:24 AM , Rating: 2
Ali G would say: "Let the world get real!!"


RE: Finally
By MrPoletski on 3/6/2009 8:52:46 AM , Rating: 2
When they pull the competetive new product trigger, they'll get the money they need thrugh sales.


RE: Finally
By darkfoon on 3/7/2009 5:21:01 PM , Rating: 2
Allow me to say to all of you before you spend hours of your lives arguing over whether this is good or bad, researching each others' facts, and so on, (or those of you who have already spent hours doing the above) do something useful with that time and write your congress person and tell them how you want them to act on this.

It'll do a lot more good than arguing on this forum, and you'll be one of those citizens who cares and lets your elected official know that you do care. Without our input, they just fly-by-night and do whatever they want.


Sorry GM
By Rhl on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Sorry GM
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 1:31:58 PM , Rating: 5
I don't think there's anything fundamentally wrong with the cars & trucks GM produces. I think their fundamental problem has been poor sales models, mismanagement, and ridiculous fiscal distress levied on them by the unions.


RE: Sorry GM
By Bender 123 on 3/5/2009 1:53:49 PM , Rating: 5
How many times have I gone into work wishing I was on one of those union furloughs? Get paid full wages to sit in the cafeteria and eat chips, because the union contract says i cant be sent home if there is no work to do.

Shame on the union for protecting their bosses over the worker and shame on the management of these companies for accepting such out of touch terms.


RE: Sorry GM
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 2:28:27 PM , Rating: 5
When an organization which controls the vast majority of your labor force threatens to basically shut your business down until you give them what they want, it's hard for a management team to say no.

They had three choices. Give the unions what they wanted. Negotiate for a better but still crappy deal. Kick out the unions and be out of business until you hire new people (or rehire ex-union workers) and get them trained.

Number one was out. Number two is what they did. Number three is what they should have done but the problem there was obviously the financial losses while you're retraining but also the negative media attention it would have drawn. But they should have given the finger to the unions and the press long ago and done it anyway.


RE: Sorry GM
By SlyNine on 3/5/09, Rating: -1
RE: Sorry GM
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 3:34:48 PM , Rating: 5
Union activity at one employer != union activity at all employers.

...and as I have just previously posted, I think the labor costs (factoring in pensions and job banks and other wacky policies) probably does account for the billions of dollars they need to stay afloat. Or at least the very biggest chunk that they could possibly hope to have any control over.


RE: Sorry GM
By TSS on 3/5/2009 7:48:50 PM , Rating: 2
party.

i'd like to think those where the costs that dragged them down a year earlyer, when 50% more cars where sold.

whatever the cause don't forget the problem has already *happened*. people aren't buying cars anymore in the volume they used to (it's halved) so GM's income in this section has halved as well.

if they'd shed the unions back in 2007, they would've still had a chance. but after gas was so high, which directly spilled over into the credit crisis... it basically finished them off.

oh yes. GM died somwhere september 2008. only the goverment is stupid enough to prolongue it.


RE: Sorry GM
By ccmfreak2 on 3/5/2009 4:02:31 PM , Rating: 2
For most companies, labor is the #1 expense factor.


RE: Sorry GM
By croc on 3/5/2009 6:08:52 PM , Rating: 1
"For most companies, labor is the #1 expense factor."

Let me fix that for you.... For all companies, product is the #1 expense factor.


RE: Sorry GM
By ccmfreak2 on 3/6/2009 9:22:40 AM , Rating: 2
That's simply not true. The company I work for is requiring all salaried employees to take a two week unpaid vacation sometime between late January and the end of June to help increase the amount of cash on hand due to the fact that wages is the number one expense for my company. This furlough plan will save the company $52 Million and we get to keep our jobs.


RE: Sorry GM
By oab on 3/5/2009 9:20:20 PM , Rating: 2
Labour costs currently account for 7% of new vehicle production costs, they were 25% in the '70s.

At least for Canadian manufactured cars/trucks.

Dealers take larger cuts of the sticker price than the workers do.


RE: Sorry GM
By mmatis on 3/5/2009 8:49:08 PM , Rating: 2
Except this country's labor laws wouldn't let them do that. Do you REALLY think the government would let them fire all the union workers and hire non-union? And that's ignoring the fact that the union workers would burn the plants down if they even tried it!


RE: Sorry GM
By Motoman on 3/6/2009 11:23:29 AM , Rating: 2
...what are you smoking? There's no law that says a business has to allow unions. There's plenty of examples of non-union shops around, like the US Honda & Mitsubishi plants.

On top of that, I am rather sure that the government would be more than happy to have jobs of any kind - union or not - right now.

But your last sentence really highlighted the union mentality as I have seen it play out, over many years of seeing the effects of union antics in nearby communities.
quote:
And that's ignoring the fact that the union workers would burn the plants down if they even tried it!

You are absolutely right in pointing out what has become my impression of the typical union state of mind. They want what they want because they want it, and if you don't just give it to them they go off the handle with no respect to rational thought. Indeed...give us what we want or we end you (whether burning the plant down or not) - which is of course a laughably moronic stance to take, because then not only are you out of work, but the only source of work in your town will pack up and leave.

That's the way it works. And I have seen more than one plant be shut down and either deprecated or replaced elsewhere simply to get rid of the union (once a union is in a plant, you effectively can't get them out) in order to save the company.

The union mindset is baffling.


RE: Sorry GM
By daniyarm on 3/5/2009 2:27:21 PM , Rating: 2
Mechanically they are probably OK, but ergonomically and cosmetically they are crap. Comparable imports use better materials and are more comfortable for long drives. When I get into a newer Chevy, I feel like i am in a 20 year old car with a new body kit. All this is probaly done to offset the higher laber costs to keep the model competetive. They have proven they can't modernize and survive in the 21st century, so they should do what many other american manufacturers have done in the last 50 years, close shop and go home.


RE: Sorry GM
By bhieb on 3/5/2009 2:29:41 PM , Rating: 2
Are you comparing a Chevy with and Acura, come on apples to oranges. At least come to me with why the OP's Acura is better than say a CTS? That is the same level car not anything Chevy has.


RE: Sorry GM
By TheSpaniard on 3/6/2009 8:29:54 AM , Rating: 2
TSX vs CTS.... TSX is nicer IMO...

and the CTS is ~10k more!


RE: Sorry GM
By bhieb on 3/6/2009 10:20:18 AM , Rating: 2
As it is subjective, I cannot really argue that. However calling the CTS cheap feel is would not be accurate either. Now a cobalt vs the acura sure who wouldn't pick the acura. My point was that acura is a luxury brand and should not be compared to say Chevy.

But since we are talking opinion. The CTS is way better than the TSX. Better horsepower, and much nicer interior IMHO :) CTS has wood trim (albeit faux) and real crome interior accents. TSX is just blah honda plastic with metalic plastic to accent. At least with the caddy you get an original looking car not an upgraded accord, because let's face it they look really similar.


RE: Sorry GM
By TheSpaniard on 3/8/2009 1:12:13 PM , Rating: 2
I agree if they were the same price I would be more tempted to get the cady but the vehicle is 10k more. so for price comparison take a look at the TL. (for price comprable SH_AWD + tech package) read the features and compare to base CTS and add features to the CTS till you come up with the diffence and you will see the Acura comes out on top.

well when the Cobalt came out, it was priced (the SS model) to compete with the RSX-S

which would you pick a 220hp N/A engine or a 220hp supercharged engine?

dont even look at the interiors though for this comparison acura wins hands down!


RE: Sorry GM
By TheSpaniard on 3/8/2009 1:25:30 PM , Rating: 2
I agree if they were the same price I would be more tempted to get the cady but the vehicle is 10k more. so for price comparison take a look at the TL. (for price comprable SH_AWD + tech package) read the features and compare to base CTS and add features to the CTS till you come up with the diffence and you will see the Acura comes out on top.

well when the Cobalt came out, it was priced (the SS model) to compete with the RSX-S

which would you pick a 220hp N/A engine or a 220hp supercharged engine?

dont even look at the interiors though for this comparison acura wins hands down!


RE: Sorry GM
By superflex on 3/5/2009 2:43:10 PM , Rating: 2
The interior trim of a GM screams rental car. I'm biased driving an Audi, but the fit and finish is pathetic on both GM and Chrysler products. Squeaks, rattles and cheap materials are par for the course.
I say good riddance to GM and their UAW employees. You made your bed, now sleep in it.


RE: Sorry GM
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 3:06:07 PM , Rating: 4
When was the last time you actually drove a Chevy then? Or have you just driven rentals? And as another person said, comparing Chevy to Audi? Cmon.

My Cobalt's interior had no squeaks or anything in 3 years and I felt the interior was of good quality(granted mine also wasn't the base model). Luxury car quality? No but its a $14-21,000 car. I had a rental Pontiac G5 for a few days and while it wasn't as nice as my Cobalt that I had, it's quality wasn't any worse than the base 2008 Civic a guy at work has(admittedly the Civic's exterior looks a hell of a lot better). And the interior of the new Malibu is extremely nice as is many of their other cars. All the new Chevy's I've been in haven't been any cheaper than any of the newer Hondas or Toyota's I've been in.

As far as Dodge's, yes I'll agree that they are poor. Dodge uses far too many hard lines in its interior designs that don't come off too well.


RE: Sorry GM
By 67STANG on 3/5/2009 6:25:57 PM , Rating: 2
American cars have vastly improved in their interior quality, especially in the last few years. My '07 Chrysler 300 has lost: an air conditioner vent, 3 seatbelt covers and a clip holding a dash trim piece on. That's pretty horrible, but still better than what they used to come out with.

On the issue of the Cobalt, the only experience I've had with one was starting one up at an Enterprise Renta-A-Car. When I started the car up, it started pouring smoke out of the exhaust. Turns out the engine threw a rod. It had <8,000 miles on it. Yikes. They gave me a Civic instead. =)


RE: Sorry GM
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 3:08:08 PM , Rating: 3
As another poster pointed out, you're comparing apples to oranges. How much did your Audi cost? And you want to compare that to a sub-$20K Chevy or similar?


RE: Sorry GM
By Steve1981 on 3/5/2009 3:44:55 PM , Rating: 2
FWIW...

I don't know that I'd say interior "quality" is any better between my Mazda 3i and my fiance's Pontiac Grand Am SEII. They're both reasonably well built machines that have functioned as expected.

However...

The interior of her car (subjectively speaking of course) is butt ugly. Yeah it's all plastic I suppose. But the Mazda plastic fools me into thinking I'm driving something much more than an economy car. When I'm driving the Pontiac, there is no doubt that I'm driving an economy car.


RE: Sorry GM
By cparka23 on 3/5/2009 2:30:31 PM , Rating: 2
There's something to be said about having more than a dozen different brand badges all under one company. They did a good thing in shutting down Oldsmobile in '04, but they should have taken it a LOT further.

If you're looking for a fundamental flaw in their cars and trucks, one is that they're so similar to one another at their roots, which is both a management issue and a vehicle issue. Escalade or Denali? SRX, Trailblazer, or Enclave? GMC Sierra or Chevy Silverado? Chevy Colorado or GMC Canyon? Yukon or Suburban?

Did somebody seriously hold two different design sketches in their hands an say, "Can we have them both?"


RE: Sorry GM
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 3:00:17 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Escalade or Denali? SRX, Trailblazer, or Enclave? GMC Sierra or Chevy Silverado? Chevy Colorado or GMC Canyon? Yukon or Suburban?
It's all about marketing and maximizing revenue/profit. The difference between many of these brands has to do with marketing image, e.g., Cadillac = luxury, GMC = professional grade, etc. Consumers will pay more for brands with these perceived benefits, plus obviously some of the features reserved for the higher-class models.

And nearly all car companies do the same thing. Why do you think Toyota has Lexus, Honda has Acura, and Nissan has Infiniti?


RE: Sorry GM
By nevermore781 on 3/5/2009 4:04:46 PM , Rating: 2
I disagree. GM has never had a car that was as marketable as the civic, at least not since 4 bangers became the new 'hot rods'.

Thats really what i think they missed on. Import tuning has become a HUGE industry and there are millions of parts out there for honda, mitsu, suby, but maybe 10 for a saturn? The Ion redline was the only GM vehicle that I consider to be in the same class as a civic, but never gained any following. Hell even the cobalt has a bigger following.


RE: Sorry GM
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 4:24:11 PM , Rating: 2
The Cobalt SS 2.0L turbo is a great tuner car. 260 hp/260 lb ft and still 30 mpg highway. And you can get a GM kit to boost that by 30 hp.

About the only thing that'd make it better is AWD so it can put that power to the ground.


RE: Sorry GM
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 6:08:16 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
The Cobalt SS 2.0L turbo is a great tuner car


Lol dude.

Tuner cars are imports. Period.


RE: Sorry GM
By matt0401 on 3/5/2009 2:28:16 PM , Rating: 2
Less than an hour ago I got a ride in a Toyota Camry, first Toyota in my life.

Holy crap... I've never ridden in a car so quiet, smooth, and roomy before, and this was a model I think 5 years old.

If GM survives they'll need a miracle to compete against what's out there from other car makers.


RE: Sorry GM
By Murst on 3/5/2009 4:41:00 PM , Rating: 2
My 1993 Camry isn't exactly quiet, smooth, and that roomy....

But in 15 years, the only maintenance on it was replacing the break pads, tires, and windshield wipers. And a few oil changes.

I have a feeling it's going to die soon though, which is rather sad...


RE: Sorry GM
By Murst on 3/5/2009 4:42:22 PM , Rating: 2
Oops... forgot that I did have to change some light bulbs too..


RE: Sorry GM
By AngryNJ on 3/5/2009 2:34:07 PM , Rating: 4
Do you mean the Honda and Toyota that are getting ready to ask the Japanese government for bailouts?

http://www.businessweek.com/globalbiz/content/mar2...

http://www.thestreet.com/_yahoo/story/10467556/1/h...

The fact is that Japanese cars are not that much better in terms of quality to American cars. This isn't 1982 anymore.


RE: Sorry GM
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 3:37:33 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. The Japanese car makers are hurting too - just to a lesser extent. At the risk of being a broken record, I would say that is because of the huge disparity in labor costs primarily, with a far second and third being management and sales model.


RE: Sorry GM
By FITCamaro on 3/5/2009 5:24:57 PM , Rating: 3
Well even before the current troubles, Honda and Toyota have gotten money from the Japanese government to help them develop their products. Toyota received around a billion dollars to help them develop the Prius. When you're up against companies that don't have to pay for R&D themselves(not to mention lower labor costs), it's hard to compete.


RE: Sorry GM
By mindless1 on 3/5/2009 6:29:54 PM , Rating: 2
Labor costs yes, but when we use the term labor costs everyone keeps getting confused and thinking UAW workers are making too much, when in fact they aren't making much at all more than other US autoworkers. The difference is more retirees, and the other companies will have a similar burden eventually... it just caught up to older US companies first, then we had the recession.


RE: Sorry GM
By oab on 3/5/2009 9:24:27 PM , Rating: 3
the governments of Germany, France, Japan, Korea, Italy all have bailed out their auto industries.


Might be better for all
By Reycrazy on 3/5/2009 2:06:22 PM , Rating: 5
If GM tanks, it will be a good thing for the rest of th automotive industry.

1. Their marketshare will be divied up between the others which might allow Chrysler to survive. Sure it's going to be a mess at first, but in the end it will work themselves out.

2. Even if auxillary business like steel, plastics, and things like that will stumbel along, they will eventually recoup business by supplying the remaining autmakers

3. Dealerships fall in the same category as in number, but they will have easier time by just selling other cars. A certain will go under, but we are in a recession. It's part of the cycle.

4. The UAW may finally realize they better get competitive or they can go stand in unemployment lines. Things might get so bad for them that perhaps Ford and Chrysller can break the union's hold on them (i.e. you either get competitive, or we hire someone else).

5. Save us some tax dollars.

I think we should let them go. They have pie in the sky dreams that amount to a hill of beans. They are basing their future on the Volt that will not be profitable for years. I am not sure what exactly they are going to do until then, but if they cannot turn a profit by then, they are finished.

GM is like the Titanic, all the money in the world is not going to save her.




RE: Might be better for all
By DigitalFreak on 3/5/2009 2:27:46 PM , Rating: 2
Chrysler won't survive by just picking up GM's leftovers. The majority of their cars are based on V8 engines and get crap for fuel economy. The rest of their cars (Caliber, Sebring, Journey, etc.) are junk. Only decent things they make are min-vans and pickups.


RE: Might be better for all
By mmatis on 3/5/2009 5:12:45 PM , Rating: 2
If the GD swill running this government would get off CAFE and would allow oil development in this country, Chrysler and GM would be doing fine. They had no real financial problems until the government maggots drove the gas prices up through their "green" policies. However, GM especially and Chrysler and Ford as well were all too willing to suck the Green dicks as well as the UAW dicks. So ya got whatcha got!


RE: Might be better for all
By DigitalFreak on 3/5/2009 5:24:23 PM , Rating: 1
Wow, got some pent up hostility there?

This has nothing to do with CAFE standards. Other companies have been building quality vehicles that get good mileage for years and aren't circling the bowl.


RE: Might be better for all
By mmatis on 3/5/2009 5:59:03 PM , Rating: 2
Other companies haven't been sucking the UAW dick for years. None of the Big 3, who are all Union out the butt, have built a quality vehicle that gets good mileage and sells. Look up and down this row of posts - Big 3 quality sucks on their small cars. And they LOSE money on each and every one of them! The only thing that has been keeping them solvent is their trucks and SUVs! They only build the small cars in an attempt to get their CAFE numbers where they have to be by law. Thanks to the Swill on the Hill...


RE: Might be better for all
By Lerianis on 3/8/2009 11:25:50 PM , Rating: 2
None of those things you mention are the fault of the Unions. The Unions do not design the cars, they do not approve the design of the cars, etc.

The only thing the Union does is their workers assemble the F'ing cars! Nothing more! PERIOD!

The real problem is that the Big 3 have not been making economical cars for YEARS now nor using the design improvement from overseas until VERY recently, and then only because the people on Capital Hill asked them "Uh.... why aren't you using these methods that could cut the production of a car in half or even less, giving you a bigger margin on your vehicles?"

People keep on blaming the Unions.... it is NOT the unions that are the problem. It is mismanagement at these companies that have been allowed to get away with it for MANY years now because no one wanted to say "ENOUGH! Find better way to do these things, or you are fired!" to upper management and designers.


RE: Might be better for all
By mindless1 on 3/5/2009 6:32:03 PM , Rating: 2
If a deal goes through between Fiat and Chrysler, that will change quite a bit with smaller Fiat designs and substantially (perhaps best?) new fuel efficient engines on the market, but these things take time, not mere months.


RE: Might be better for all
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 2:37:44 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
If GM tanks, it will be a good thing for the rest of th automotive industry.
Your post does a good job summarizing the ignorance that the typical American has towards the auto industry. The real story is that if GM tanks, it is going to take a lot of our economy with it, and it will probably happen in the middle of this recession, making it deeper and recovery much longer.

And if you think that doesn't matter, then all it proves is that you are either (a) not concerned about having a job and earning a living for yourself and your family, or (b) in complete denial.

I think it is time we Americans started to take some interest in the state of business and the economy in our country. By maintaining the kind of apathy we see in posts like yours, all we are doing ourselves in, one day at a time.


RE: Might be better for all
By dclapps on 3/5/2009 3:34:21 PM , Rating: 3
And your post does a good job summarizing how a person believes their opinion is better than another's. Mind stepping down from the pedestal next time when you speak to us "typical Americans"?

Are we supposed to keep paying GM whenever they hurt? Where's their incentive to make smart business decisions when they always have a safety net? 3M out of a job, join the line. Maybe they can finally use all that money they've been hoarding all these years; when that runs out, maybe they'll get the itch to work again, this time at a rate favorable towards GM because they need to work.

The amount of money paid out to various companies should be a good indicator that nothing is stopping this depression. The longer we prop GM up, the farther out we put recovery.

GM brought this on themselves, they must be allowed to fail.


RE: Might be better for all
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 3:59:57 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The amount of money paid out to various companies should be a good indicator that nothing is stopping this depression. The longer we prop GM up, the farther out we put recovery.
I don't think so. Think of it this way - the government has two choices, either give loans to the US car companies and keep them running until consumer confidence returns, or pay massive unemployment benefits and deal with even higher unemployment and the resulting lower consumer confidence. Which do you think is better for our economy - which do you think will help us recover sooner?
quote:
GM brought this on themselves, they must be allowed to fail.
GM's overall financial weakness is largely their own problem, but they certainly did not cause the recession. That was triggered by the banking/credit crisis. Tell me, what businesses can survive when their sales decrease by 35-55% year-to-year? Especially in manufacturing? You people need to get real.


RE: Might be better for all
By Reclaimer77 on 3/5/2009 9:53:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
GM's overall financial weakness is largely their own problem, but they certainly did not cause the recession. That was triggered by the banking/credit crisis.


/jaw dropped

Are you telling me GM JUST got in trouble in the barely year plus that we've been in a recession ??

You're something else Tom...


RE: Might be better for all
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 11:00:18 PM , Rating: 2
Were GM, Chrysler, or Ford in Washington asking for government loans even one year ago? No, they weren't. The only arrived towards the end of last year after the auto market collapsed.


RE: Might be better for all
By Reclaimer77 on 3/6/2009 3:24:37 PM , Rating: 2
Blow it out of your ass Tom. You KNOW GM has been a slow motion financial trainwreck for a DECADE. You know this. Why are you doing this ? Claiming the short time we have been in a recession has been GM's demise is a flat out LIE. And you know this.


RE: Might be better for all
By Steve1981 on 3/6/2009 10:19:57 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
the government has two choices, either give loans to the US car companies and keep them running until consumer confidence returns


Lets say consumer confidence returns. Do you suppose people are going to rush out and buy cars from a company that has made headlines month after month for making trips to beg for loans from Congress? How comfortable would you be buying a car from a company that isn't just broke, they're tens of billions in the hole (if not 100+ billion in the hole by the time this all plays out)?

quote:
Which do you think is better for our economy


Depends on which school of economics you subscribe to. There are some that hold the best way to move forward would be to let the market reallocate resources as this is more efficient than having government try and allocate resources for you. Is there pain and cost in the process of market reallocation? Of course. But the end result tends to be considerably stronger than the alternative.

quote:
Tell me, what businesses can survive when their sales decrease by 35-55% year-to-year?


Depends on how flexible the company is. Say Company X's sales drop by 50%. If they keep spending like sales are at 100%, they die. If they cut their spending to match the drop in sales, they survive.


RE: Might be better for all
By rdeegvainl on 3/5/2009 3:45:30 PM , Rating: 2
I think americans already voted with their wallets on which companies they want to keep going. To take money from americans and give it to the companies they decided not to buy from... complete and utter BULLSHIT.


RE: Might be better for all
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 4:21:32 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not sure what you mean by that, since GM is more or less tied with Toyota for #1, and Ford's sales exceed Honda's.


RE: Might be better for all
By ccmfreak2 on 3/5/2009 4:15:01 PM , Rating: 5
So therefor we should have a government supported company? They should just get more and more taxpayer dollars "just because" they are GM? What kinda crap is that? Is this going to hurt? Absolutely! But GM needs to fall. A poorly run company should not be propped up by the government just because they are big and non-productive. You shouldn't be paying payroll on debt. That's just plain stupid! I - as a tax payer - am sick of rewarding bad behavior!

Sometimes it takes a little pain in order to get smart. This will hurt America in the short-term, but maybe we will get smart about how we are managing our companies.


RE: Might be better for all
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 4:25:38 PM , Rating: 2
The cause of the problem they face now is the global recession and the total decimation of car sales across nearly all manufacturers globally. The Big Three were not in Washington two years ago asking for loans, were they? Basically they need loans to get through the current crisis. I think you'll see other automakers around the world in the same situation as the recession drags on.


RE: Might be better for all
By ccmfreak2 on 3/5/2009 4:50:58 PM , Rating: 3
This isn't the first recession we have been through. And I'm not giving any of the other auto makers a free pass either. I stand behind my free-market roots. Times like these is why the business place has something called "retained earnings". You have to put away money in the good times so you can stay afloat in the bad times. Basic business principles.


RE: Might be better for all
By mindless1 on 3/5/2009 6:42:05 PM , Rating: 2
Honda, Toyota, Mazda, and probably others have already asked for bailouts too, or soon will even though we're in a situation where the recession may get even worse and new cars are piling up.


RE: Might be better for all
By Reycrazy on 3/5/2009 4:23:52 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Your post does a good job summarizing the ignorance that the typical American has towards the auto industry. The real story is that if GM tanks, it is going to take a lot of our economy with it, and it will probably happen in the middle of this recession, making it deeper and recovery much longer.


If you have not realized that GM has tanked, then see above quote. If you think the government knows anything about running a corporation, once again see the above quote. The question remains is where do you want to cut your losses? at 20 billion or a 100 billion. Throw in interest on that and the number is even worse because the governments has to borrow that money. So your money will be worth less because the government will have to print more of it. Now everyone will have a pay cut thanks to inflation.

And, where is the accountability? Everyone has to face the music eventually. The failure of GM is a result of poor business decisions. They got a taste of it in the 80's when the foreign car companies started to hand it to them. It is hard for me to feel sympathetic when they knew their business model was bad in the first place. You know it is bad when they say they cannot survive bankruptcy. Truth be told, they probably knew they did not have a viability plan that did not extend beyond government hand outs.

As far as all the other mom and pop shops and other corporations that will go under because of them, I feel bad for them because many will close their doors for good. But in all reality the government throwing money that they do not have at the problem will not work. That money will still have to be paid back which will lead to another recession that will be worse because it will be the government that needs to bailed out. GM is a tumor and would be best if removed now. the longer it waits, the worse it will get.

However, fee


RE: Might be better for all
By TomZ on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Might be better for all
By Reycrazy on 3/5/2009 5:00:42 PM , Rating: 2
It is true that GM was profitable in the earlier part of this decade. However I think that they should have been a bit more responsible with their windfall instead of doling out money to execs and unions.

I do believe that companies should be given money as loans if they are viable enough to turn a profit. With GM, I don't know that they can do that.


RE: Might be better for all
By mindless1 on 3/5/2009 6:52:03 PM , Rating: 2
So by your plan, MOST automakers will have to go out of business? GM, Ford, Honda, Toyota, Chrysler, Mazda.

They are all going out of business since they are all struggling?

You seem to be forgetting something, that when the government spends money on US companies, it comes back to them again several times in taxes. How much in taxes does an unemployed person on welfare pay and what amount of products and services do they buy?

You are thinking in terms of a free market, but not a global one. In the global market, the US is one company and we're all employees. It's not like you can just fire the employee, that employee is the citizen who increases the GDP by working. As a nation we could literally benefit by creating a whole new auto manufacturer, pay them billions out of our taxes, in addition to bailing out GM and Chrysler. It doesn't matter if the companies lose money because they are losing money into OUR economy and simultaneously increasing GDP. That makes us stronger, or hadn't you noticed why our economy had been going south for years before the recession?


RE: Might be better for all
By Reclaimer77 on 3/6/2009 3:41:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The real story is that if GM tanks, it is going to take a lot of our economy with it, and it will probably happen in the middle of this recession, making it deeper and recovery much longer.


Yet printing out money to pay for bailouts, causing hyperinflation, is GOOD for the economy.

Your right Tom, us Americans are so stupid.


RE: Might be better for all
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 4:56:07 PM , Rating: 2
Sure it will prolong the recession, but at least this time let's take the hit right here and right now so our poor children don't have to suffer through a recession 5 times worse than this one. Your band-aid solution won't work. This is a good time to get rid of all the evils of the auto labor market in the US. I'd rather have taxpayers take a one time hit on paying for these moron's healthcare and retirement right now than to watch people like you fund this problem so that it becomes 10 times as large and then everyone has to suffer even more later.


Hate to say it.....
By Hiawa23 on 3/5/2009 1:26:46 PM , Rating: 2
I hate to say it, & I am no expert but just using basic economics, basice number crunching, there is no way GM can sustain itself, especially given the climate of the auto industry, so I am in the crowd that says they need to go into some sort of restructuring through bankruptcy. There is just noway they can even attempt to pay back the loans they have now, given the mounting losses, & some want to give em more. Some make the argument that the govt gave this industry money, why not give more to the auto industry, as many of us did not agree with that either. It's simple, kind of like how we got into this mess, you know, someone making loans to people who had noway of paying the loans back, in this case it's a company.

Don't get me wrong, I don't want to see our auto companies go under but they need some help cause it's clear, they & the UAW can't come to some terms that will get them on back on track, & the worsening economy even makes that worse. I sya restructure while the economy is in the tank, make the tough choices now, & hopefully by the time this is over they will emerge better than ever along with economy.




RE: Hate to say it.....
By afkrotch on 3/5/2009 2:04:50 PM , Rating: 5
Fire all union workers. Hire non-union workers. There's so many ppl without jobs, that should be cake.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By DigitalFreak on 3/5/2009 2:16:31 PM , Rating: 2
No doubt. Not like they need skilled workers for those jobs.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By afkrotch on 3/5/2009 2:52:54 PM , Rating: 3
They really don't. Sure, it'd be hard to assemble a full car, but that's not the case. They assemble a small part and move it along.

There's 2 pieces of transmission, attach them together and pass it along. Next person adds 2 more pieces, then passes that along to another person. At the end of the line, viola. A fully built transmission.

Ya, they add more pieces than that, but it's not all that complicated. Course there will be jobs that require more skill than that, but you can rehire the union worker, who got out of the union.

I'm sure a lot of ppl will end up doing that.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By TomZ on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Hate to say it.....
By mmatis on 3/5/2009 5:01:01 PM , Rating: 2
You might want to check the pay for the US Toyota, Honda, and Nissan workers versus the pay for the Big 3 workers. But then Toyota, Honda, and Nissan products are garbage compared to what comes out of Detroit. Or did I get that backwards?


RE: Hate to say it.....
By DigitalFreak on 3/5/2009 5:19:44 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
If working in a car assembly plant required no knowledge/experience as you suggest, then the going rate for auto workers would converge to minimum wage. Has that happened yet?


Sweet baby jeebus, you are one of the dumbest mother fuckers I've ever seen. Anyone with an IQ larger than their shoe size knows that the unions are responsible for their outrageous pay, not the market.

Honestly, are you that stupid? From your posts in this thread, I'd have to say yes.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By TomZ on 3/5/2009 11:04:50 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't say anything about pay at unionized plants - you did. What is the pay rate at non-union plants? What rate did the market figure out in that case? Minimum wage? Nope. Not even close.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By Lerianis on 3/8/2009 11:21:12 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly right. People keep on blaming "THE UNION! THE UNIONS! WAAAAAH!" every single time I come on this board. Guess what? The Unions are only trying to protect the people who are in their unions, because they know if you give an INCH to some people (especially upper-management in an organization!), they will take a mile from you.

It's better to be totally inflexible on some things, and the Unions haven't really been 'totally inflexible'. They have been willing to give some things up (the Job Bank to name one!) and unwilling to give other things up (health care benefits, etc.).


RE: Hate to say it.....
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 5:06:23 PM , Rating: 2
It's idiots like you who prevent the inevitable from happening. Yeah in a real free market that would happen.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mindless1 on 3/5/2009 7:01:32 PM , Rating: 2
You're forgetting something pretty important. QUALITY. Any chance you'd speculate on the generalized intelligence level of the average person making very low wages, or whether they care much about their job, if they lose their job considering they can get another low paying job down the street?

What do higher wages do? Cause competition for the jobs, attracting better candidates. Same thing in other areas of life, do you really think there would be so many lawyers if they earned the same as people working at McDonalds? Just because something is a supposed unskilled labor job, that does not mean there aren't large variances in the quality of the work, the reliability of the employee, the general environment from pleasant team-members. Call them high caliber people, I'm sure you know the difference when you see them compared to those who aren't, even if they happen to do labor for a living.

Then there's safety, I really don't want the lowest members of the food chain assembling something I'm taking around a curve at over 60MPH on a busy freeway. On the other hand, if those $14/hr workers accidentally put my shoe's strings in laced wrong or pick the wrong product to ship an order, whatever, it's not so much of a problem.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mmatis on 3/5/2009 8:55:19 PM , Rating: 1
Of course you're right! That's why the build quality of the Big 3 small cars is so much better than that of Toyota, Honda, and Nissan! Right? And that cellophane wrapper from a cigarette pack, the sheet metal screws, and the metal shavings that were in my transmission pan first time it came off were obviously put there by the union workers to make it perform better. Same for them writing "SHIT" on the throttle plate with a black magic marker. Quality OBVIOUSLY is directly related to how much better paid the Big 3 workers are than them furrin models, even if those are also made in the US of A.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mindless1 on 3/6/2009 11:36:45 AM , Rating: 2
Actually the pay isn't that different between these companies so your argument fails before it starts. Additionally, the quality gaps have practically disappeared as well.

If there was really a bunch of crap in your transmission pan the only reasonable explanation is it was taken off after the car was made and you'd owned it, by a 3rd party shop. Same thing could happen to any car made.

I have never seen any car with four letter words written on the parts and I have seen a lot of cars under-hood and undercarriage. Your info is within the realm of made-up nonsense, or possibly you were just such an a$$ at a repair shop that they decided to rape your car. That's a personal problem, one that doesn't effect anyone but you.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mmatis on 3/6/2009 10:44:29 PM , Rating: 2
Check the fully loaded rates. Mucho differenceo. And the pan came off the first time at the dealership. I stood there as they pulled it off to see why the hell I was having transmission problems. I pulled the air cleaner myself, and the car was locked any time it was parked. Just typical union swill. Look for the union label, then run like hell in the other direction!


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mindless1 on 3/7/2009 12:19:37 PM , Rating: 2
Nonsense. If that was typical we'd be hearing about such things constantly (and we aren't). I've worked on my own cars and plenty of other peoples (shade-tree mechanic, not as a profession) except for the most complex/heavy stuff for years and never saw anything like this.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mmatis on 3/7/2009 9:06:26 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe it's not typical. I sure would hope it isn't. But it sure made an impression on the dealer's transmission man. And on my friends who saw it on the throttle plate.

I have no doubt that there are many dedicated union workers who do a quality job. But there are also enough incompetents who endure because they're union. Just like the lawyers' union, which insures that incompetent lawyers get to continue their practice without punishment, and the doctors' union that insures incompetent doctors get to continue to kill or maim patients. There are companies out there which deserve unions, but once a company gets stuck with a union, the best thing that can happen is for it to go out of business. Their customers will suffer continuously until that happens.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By sxr7171 on 3/8/2009 5:09:56 PM , Rating: 2
Anything you haven't seen does not exist.


RE: Hate to say it.....
By mindless1 on 3/11/2009 9:39:25 AM , Rating: 2
Anything I have not seen after frequent exposure, could not reasonably be assumed to exist at a rate implied by the former poster.

Let's rethink your point. Does a whole 1 sample prove more or less? It's just madness, far more likely the dealership threw crap in the pan just to trick the owner into paying for more service, or to be paid for warranty work when applicable.


Time for another change?
By tspinning on 3/5/2009 1:29:13 PM , Rating: 2
I for one am ready for a new American car company.

Of course I won't need their services as my 99 Toyota is doing awesome for grocery's and I bike to work.




RE: Time for another change?
By DarkElfa on 3/5/2009 1:55:35 PM , Rating: 2
No more Corvette.


RE: Time for another change?
By afkrotch on 3/5/09, Rating: 0
RE: Time for another change?
By RamarC on 3/5/2009 2:39:57 PM , Rating: 2
you haven't checked recently then. even Top Gear likes the new corvette. if only the steering wheel was on the right side.


RE: Time for another change?
By matt0401 on 3/5/2009 2:40:43 PM , Rating: 3
Oh come on, you have to give a company credit for an achievement, no matter how unpopular that company is or how poorly managed it is. The Corvette is amazing and I say this as more of an import guy.

If GM has to restructure I say they refocus on trucks and sports cars, and to completely forget about compact cars and SUV's which they obviously failed at. If they can efficiently fill those two niches they seem to excel at they may just have a place in the auto industry.


RE: Time for another change?
By Motoman on 3/5/2009 2:58:19 PM , Rating: 2
The Corvette is practically a supercar...at less than half what a "supercar" would normally cost you. It's sweet. I just wish I could buy one :(


RE: Time for another change?
By mmatis on 3/5/2009 5:06:39 PM , Rating: 1
"If GM has to restructure I say they refocus on trucks and sports cars, and to completely forget about compact cars and SUV's which they obviously failed at."

They failed at SUVs? That's entertaining! And you need to remember that the scum sucking bastards in Congress (and this Administration as well) aren't about to let them focus on trucks and sports cars. Those filthy maggots will ram CAFE up their ass sideways, and you don't meet that horse shit with trucks and sports cars.


RE: Time for another change?