Major GM restructuring underway


#21

The 54.5 MPG EPA fuel economy goal was a fine idea, what could go wrong?

Time is running out for the large cars unless a manufacture is capable of selling a reasonable number of hybrid and electric cars to balance out the CAFE numbers for the large cars, they will be discontinued eventually.

Ford, GM and FCA are backing out of the passenger car business, it seems that there is no turning back the clock.


#22

Toyota will soon follow. All sedans except the Camry, Prius and Corolla will be gone. No more Yaris, Avalon, or Prius C. Honda’s new Passport is shoehorned between the CRV and the Pilot putting more pressure on the Honda sedans.


#23

Full-size station wagons.

Of course. I wasn’t suggesting you did the wrong thing. I’m saying that more people disliked them after the 70’s/80’s/90’s than disliked them before, and so fewer people chose GM when it came time to buy a car.

Some might have still been on dealer lots, but the base model Prelude switched over to FI for the 1990 model year. That was the last carb holdout for Honda (and only the base model - the higher trim lines had gotten FI starting in 1985).


#24

And, let us not forget GM’s past practice of putting new models on sale without adequately testing them for both reliability and durability. Turning one’s customers into an involuntary testing staff does not help to endear a company to customers who were burdened with vehicles that were neither reliable nor durable.

Ironically, after 3 or 4 years, those “new” models were usually quite good… just in time to discontinue them, and introduce newer models that had also been insufficiently tested prior to release.
Lather, rinse, repeat…


#25

I had a custom bed cover made for my 84 GMC pickup. The width of my truck bed in the back was 5" WIDER then the width in the front. The guy making my cover had just finished another cover for the same truck as mine and this time the front was wider then the back. Their fit and finish was awful back then.


#26

That was only one problem…GM’s other big problem was taking years and years to fix a design flaw. It took them more then a decade to fix their intake manifold/gasket problem that effected every single V6 and most V8 engines.


#27

That’s impressively bad. I mean, you almost have to actually practice in order to achieve that level of bad!

My folks had a mid-70’s Buick. I don’t remember what kind - I was too young to even get the color right (kept telling people it was silver because I somehow mixed up silver and gold).

It was less than a year old when mom sat down in it and immediately jumped out with a yelp. One of the springs in the seat had broken and poked up through the vinyl. Buick fixed it. Less than a year later, it happened again. She swore just on that that she would never buy another GM product, and she never did.


#28

Toyota actually went first (as of late). Discontinued the Scion tC and other models before it was popular. When it was discontinued the Scion tC was outselling dozens of models other brands still make (Miata, Leaf, C-Max, 124 Spider etc).


#29

Ford does the same, 5.4 3 valve timing issues. Ecoboost 3.5 first gen timing issues. Geez, you guys hate GM? :thinking:


#30

Gee I wonder why. I use to be a HUGE GM fan. Bought nothing but GM products in the 70’s and into the 80’s. We didn’t start out hating GM. If GM were building vehicles as reliable as the Honda/Toyota/Nissan we’ve owned in the past 30 years I’d still be buying them. But they haven’t…not even close.


#31

That’s fine, I already know that’s your opinion and you may be correct. I was comparing them to Ford (who didn’t go bankrupt). I wasn’t comparing them to Toyota and Honda. I own 2 GM’s and 1 Toyota myself.


#32

I’ve hated Ford longer. Had nothing but problems with any Ford I owned.


#33

Ford had a brief resurgence of OK-ness in the 90’s, which I suspect was enough to sustain their reputation so they could avoid bankruptcy a decade later. But they’ve done some back-sliding. We have all Fords at my office, and every single one of them has ridiculous problems, from transmissions slipping in the first few months of ownership to basic fit and finish issues like the sliding door on our Transit that can’t be closed without first opening the passenger door so the sliding door doesn’t ram into it.

GM, meanwhile, in the 90’s built this:

and then wondered why people thought of them as a turd car company.


#34

What would the Ford equivalent to that be, though? An Escort?

Would have to agree on picking a civic or Tercel over either


#35

Ford didn’t go bankrupt because they happened to sell everything they owned just before the credit crisis in 2008. They did it because they needed cash to keep operating. That they didn’t need an infusion of cash from government loans was a fortunate accident.


#36

Hard to say. The Cavalier got bigger in 1995. In that aspect as well as power/fuel economy, the Contour was a lot closer to a Cavalier than an Escort, but I think you’re right that the Cavalier and the Escort were aimed at the same buyers. It’s other American competitor was the Neon, which was its own brand of craptastic.

But like you said, Civics, Tercels, both better cars. Not to mention Sentras/200SX’s.


#37

Toyota is a worldwide organization selling cars in nearly all countries from very rich to dirt poor. The strength of Japanese and Korean manufacturers is their incredibly wide range. Toyota also owns Daihatsu, which makes strange little cars with 800 cc engines but with lots of room inside. It is sold in many countries.

What you are saying is possibly true for the North American market, but the Yaris is a very popular family car in most of the world.
If you live overseas for a few years you will start to realize that the North American Market is unique and could not be duplicated elsewhere. In Japan in many cities you can only license a car if you have arranged to have a parking space for it first. So much for a Chevy Suburban which simply would not fit in.

A few years ago we spent 3 weeks in England and Scotland. We saw exactly 2 pickup truck, and one of them had a company logo on it and was a business truck.

In short, foreign manufacturers really could do without the North American market and still survive nicely.

Volkswagen was or is the world’s largest manufacturer and only has a small share of the US and Canadian market…


#38

Daihatsu did have a brief flirtation with the US marketplace, about 25 years ago.
In my neck of the woods–where foreign marques have outnumbered US marques for a very long time–I saw no more than 5 Daihatsu Charades before those little cars all self-destructed, and before Daihatsu withdrew–in failure–from the US marketplace.

As per Wikipedia:
The third-generation car was sold in the United States for just five years, from 1988 through 1992. The car sold poorly, despite construction “as tight as a frozen head bolt”[31] and attractive styling for the market segment,[31] perhaps because of its high price, few dealerships, rough-running three-cylinder, low performance (0-60 mph or 97 km/h in 15 seconds),[31] Toyota, which had recently procured a controlling interest in Daihatsu, withdrew all Daihatsu-badged cars from the US market. Sales for 1989 were 15,118.


#39

In the four years or so that the newest iteration of the Chevy Impala has been offered for sale, I have seen probably fewer than 10 of them in my neck of the woods, and while that might not be typical of their sales in other parts of The US, those few sightings surely couldn’t have been a good sign. The other day, I saw one on US-1 (with Oklahoma plates), and I pointed it out to my friend who was riding with me. He agreed that it was a good-looking car, and he stated that he had never before seen one.

Very high-priced Maserati sedans are a common sight in my area, so the extremely rare sighting of a last-generation Impala has to be proof of big problems for GM. Ergo, I’m not that surprised by their business decision.


#40

A guy who was in college when I was in high school dated a high school cheerleader that I loved in vain. He drove a Diahatsu Rocky. That’s the only Diahatsu I’ve ever seen. But of course, I hate those vehicles now. No fault of their own.