We're happy that Washington Post car columnist Warren Brown is happy with the "new" GM. But methinks he protests too little. In his latest minimus opus, Brown begins by admitting that "it's too early for General Motors to declare 'mission accomplished'"– even though that expression has been considered ironic since GWB gave a post-Iraq invasion press conference on the U.S.S. Lincoln. Anyway, if that's not scary enough, Warren reveals there's a "discernible note of confidence in the voices of GM's top executives today" and "smiles on the faces of the company's designers, engineers, vehicle line executives, marketing and communications people." And that's because GM's "changed its culture from one of authoritarian control with little regard for consumers or rank-and-file employees to one in which car people — designers, engineers and marketers — have been empowered to go full blast in anticipating and meeting consumer needs and demands." Wow! On the tangible proof side, Brown lauds the new Chevrolet Malibu, Cadillac CTS, Saturn Sky, GMC Acadia, Saturn Outlook and Buick Enclave (Shhh! Don't tell Warren's readers that the last three are the same vehicle.) As for actual factual evidence of this turnaround, Warren cites the Sky "stealing sales from the iconic MX-5 Miata," GM's slight sales increase during the last two months and, uh, that's it. With a cheering section like this, who needs PR?
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