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Is This the Car America Wants?

40 years ago I owned a 1968 Pontiac Firebird. I thought maybe I could relive those days. So…about 2 weeks ago I test drove a 2010 Chevy Camaro. The model was the 2SS(6.2L, 426 HP, 6 speed manual). The MSRP was about 37K. The salesman said dealers were getting 5 to 8K over MSRP for the 2SS. But he’d “give it away for 40ish.” After the test drive I decided the “good old days” are best left to the past (I guess that’s why they’re called good old days).



I drove by the dealership yesterday and the car was still on the lot.



Since GM is designing/building cars on “our nickel” I’m left with the questions: Why would GM even bother building this car model? and Is this the car America wants?

I’m sure that some people (not me) will lust after this car. The question remains of how many will be willing to pay 37-40k for one. And, in a recent Consumer Reports comparison test, the new Camaro was a distant second to a Mustang.

Even though GM is “designing cars on our nickel”, this one was planned and engineered long before any governmental intervention. My guess is that this model will be pulled from production within a year or so if it does not sell in sufficient numbers to justify its existence.

This is a high powered specialty car. It is the car a few car enthusiast want, but not the car America wants in general. I have an '04 T’bird which is fun for me, but certainly a specialty car too.

If you are interested in the car, go back the the dealer and offer them a much lower offer than before. My guess is the enthusiast have bought up the Camero’s by now and this car will sit for a while more. You can now buy it for something significantly below invoice, or the dealer can continue to pay interest on the car as it sits on his lot.

Let them know you may be interested in a deal now, but don’t close the deal until the last 5 days of October. If you get it fine, if not you seem to be OK with that too. Someday it may be one of those iconic cars of the past. In 20 years cars probably will make hardly any noise, will not have neck snapping power, and will look like little rolling boxes or some generic aerodynamic sedan shape. It might be fun to still be able to lay down a patch of burning rubber when you are in your 80’s. If you don’t drive it much, heck who cares what a gallon of gas cost? This isn’t transportation, it is recreation which puts a car like this in the same category as boats.

They built it because GM management thought, when they gave the go-ahead for production (several years before the financial meltdown), that it would sell like hotcakes.

That was then, this is now. Sales volume will determine whether or not this is the car (or a car) America wants. I’m sure there will be some buyers, but anyone willing to pay more than MSRP should, in my opinion, have his or her head examined.

Personally, I think the new Camaro, like the new Challenger, is too large and WAY too heavy. They’re sort of cartoon versions of the original models.

I don’t expect these new pony cars to sell like they did in the 1960s. The timing just isn’t right.

Every new car model has dealers trying to get suckers, I mean customers, to pay thousands over list. They’re turning these things out by the thousands. If you really want one do as advised, be prepared to wait, but the price will definitely come down. Especially now.

No

At that price, who would want a Camaro when you could get a used Corvette, or a new Corvette for a little more money?

It’s a response to the Mustang, Challenger, and Charger. Is Chrysler twice as bad for selling 2 nostalgia cars?

I hope that they are successful. Do you really want the Federal Government running a car business? I don’t, and the Administration said that they don’t want to, either.

If you thought GM was spending our bailout money wisely, this discussion tells it all.

GM has admitted publically a history of taking way, way too long (in years) considering the “business case” until it’s too late to benefit from entering a market segment. The new Camaro is a classic example of this.

The retro market segment was begun years ago by the PT Cruiser. From there Ford entered with the T-bird, then came others. Pony cars like the Mustang joined the “fray” and by the time GM released the Camaro the market segment was pretty much covered and the economy has pretty much ravaged the market along with the rest of the automotive market segments. Other manufacturers are designing for the next expected shift in the market. GM will follow suit years later. They want to be certain that a marjet segment is viable before they begin developing for it. They are no longer industry leaders…they’re industry followers.

I do have to admit, however, that in spite of themselves they’ve done a great job with the new “baby 'vettes”.

you can have your opinion, but dont speak for all of us. I would love to get my mitts on a challenger or camaro or mustang. we need more of these. a prius isnt going to capture Americas hearts. an RWD muscle blowing the pants off of a honda will more likely sell more then that honda getting its pants beaten. I’m still waiting for a GM camaro with an LS9. but the dilluted minds puppeteering detroit (yeah I said it) wont let them build cars that will sell. only crap compacts.

In my neck of the woods I have seen surprisingly quite a few new Camaros on the street. On the other other hand I have seen very few Toyota Venzas. So who laid the big blank?

I speak only for myself. Others are free to disagree, and I respect that there are different views. The public admission I refer to was in an interview with an editor of Automotive News, a trade magazine for the business side of the industry, some time ago before the bottom fell out of the economy.

There’ll always be a niche market for each of the pony cars. How the market shares shake out will be determined by the marketplace itself. I subscribe to the theory that the last one to the table is likely to end up with whatever is left of the pie.

Time will tell.

Pity that the dealer is trying to do a bit of scalping-whos gonna pay over MSRP?Anyway I like the new Camaro,seems like if it is light enough the V-6 will suffice.Anyway this is a niche car(I really like the styling,GM brought it out a couple of years too late-due to various reasons,if it would have came out the same time as the “Transformer” movie they would have flown off the lots,my take anyway" Kevin

The Charger is no throwback car. It has 4 doors and no manual transmission. It’s just another unexceptional car built on an old Mercedes platform.

Apparently it is a car that America wants, they are selling quite well. I would never pay over MSRP for one, or even MSRP for one. I do think it’s overpriced. At $38k-$43k there are some other very good cars to chose from.

Agree with few Toyota Venzas so far on the road. Could this be a dud for mighty Toyota? Of course the first one’s available were loaded V6’s which were very pricey, luxurious, and poor mpg. Now that there are some 4’s available are they basic models or loaded one’s? I checked the dealer inventory in my area and there were lots of 6’s, a few 4’s and all were much more than the basic model sticker price.

Perhaps it would sell if Toyota didn’t load it with a bunch of fancy junk!

Just went on Toyota of Scranton PA web site, 5 Venza’s in inventory 3 are 4’s and 2 V6’s. 2 of the 3 4’s are basic (only extra cost option is set of 5 floor mats) and one must be loaded. So, 2 Venza’s at just over $27K and 3 in the $34K+ range.

Why would GM even bother building this car model?.. Because there is a market for it and GM needed to do it. They needed something to counter the Mustang and Challenger. If they did not the other 2 would the entire market share for hp cars. If the did or did not people would gripe either way.

and Is this the car America wants?..yes, for some of America.

Like America needs fried chicken, french fries and big whoppers. Fast food for the automotive world that makes an immediate profit but contributes little to the landscape. GM, take your time and engineering skills and make a car that goes 0-60 in under 6 seconds if you must, but gets 40 mpg. Stop following. With the snap of a finger, Toyota could bring back the Supra and show their poor judgment too. Fortunately many Americans can live without super cars that suck up precious fossil fuels that act as a testosterone substitute.
We were all junkies at one time and measured our manhood by the length of our skid marks…it’s time to consume healthier products, excluding 420 hp Camaros. Stop the race to the bottom !