A parts shortage has resulted in a shutdown at Chrysler’s Windsor Assembly Plant, home of the Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country.
Local propaganda almost always serves to screw the little guy. With rare exception, it never fails to do so.
“Hey! What about me?”, screams the local electric company CEO. “We really need to double the monthly service charge for our local residents to manage our costs. But let’s also throw in a double digit rate reduction for those who use a lot of energy. Like the billionaire and his businesses. After all, they create the jobs out here!”
And the story drones on. The trash company that owns a multitude of companies that have virtually nothing to do with trash, wants to hike your bill. Because they need to hit their numbers. Just like everybody else. The insurance company. The gas company. The local government. The state government. Heck, every local monopolist and oligopoly is thrusting their well oiled lobbyist machines right at your shrinking wallet.
Guess who else is doing it now? The auto parts stores.
NOTE: I received the following email from Saab Automobile Parts North America. As I was not aware of the recent details behind Saab’s parts/service operation (my bad) I felt obligated to share this, unedited, with everyone. – SM
We read, with great interest, your latest Piston Slap post and the many comments in response to “The Last Saab = good Deal?” We wanted to take this opportunity to let you know about Saab Automobile Parts North America, the exclusive authorized provider of Saab Genuine Parts in North America. Venues like yours help us to get the message out that Saab Genuine Parts and Service are available. (Read More…)
After a lot of he loves me, he loves me not, GM and Peugeot PSA finally took their fledgling 7 percent relationship a few concrete steps forward. At least on paper. GM and PSA will not just buy new parts together. They will share platforms, the key to make joint purchasing work. The timing of this announcement, coinciding with a bailout by the French government, however is a bit unfortunate. (Read More…)
The great October surprise announcement of progress at GM’s Opel front is turning into an October letdown. What will be announced “this month, early next month” will be a joint purchasing agreement between GM and 7 percent partner PSA Peugeot Citroen, GM CEO Dan Akerson told Reuters ahead of the Sao Paulo Auto Show’s media preview. In the industry, the joint purchasing agreement is seen as a non-event.
We’ve been told again and again that pooled parts purchasing produces profits. Baloney, Opel interim-chief Thomas Sedran will say in an interview that Germany’s Tagesspiegel will publish tomorrow. He says something GM customers have known for a while: Parts from GM’s bin often are too expensive, and by sourcing them elsewhere, one can save a lot of money. “We are talking a significant order of magnitude,” Sedran will say tomorrow. (Read More…)
While foreign cars are still a bit underrepresented in Japan, fueling fierce allegations of trickery by unions, democrat lawmakers and grossly underrepresented Detroit carmakers, foreign carparts do not have this problem. With the yen stuck at abnormally high level, Japanese carmakers more and more buy their parts cheaper overseas. (Read More…)
The Japanese car industry found a way to soften the impact of the crushingly high yen on its books. It does what U.S. and European automakers have practiced for a long time: Import low-cost parts from abroad. It is a stop-gap measure while large parts of the Japanese car industry is packing. (Read More…)
A 1995 Volvo 960. Supple leather that made long trips easy. Great safety and visibility. It represented what I thought would be the perfect family car.
I financed it quick enough. But then the troubles began.
Selling overpriced “Original” parts can be like printing money. I know carmakers that generate 30 percent of their profits out of parts sales. How do you drive parts sales? By forcing customers to stay as long as possible with your dealer, a money pit the customer tries to flee as early and as quickly as possible. The golden fleece in the business are repairs only an authorized dealer can perform, using overpriced parts only the authorized dealer has. Countless attempts have been made to break this monopoly. Another attempt is on the way. (Read More…)
For some time now, there’s been something of a low-scale war going on between OEMs and aftermarket parts suppliers just below the national media radar. The issue: whether or not aftermarket structural parts are as good as OEM parts. Ford has been a major proponent of the OEM-only approach, making the video you see above in hopes of proving that aftermarket parts aren’t up to the job. But the aftermarket is firing back, and they’ve made their own video in direct response to this one, which you can view after the jump.
With new compact and subcompact models from Ford and GM enjoying respectable sales, the mainstream media has been indulging in some “feel-good” headlines, like the New York Times’s Detroit’s Rebound Is Built on Smaller Cars, or CBS’s more equivocal Can small cars rebound U.S. auto industry? It’s an understandable instinct, as the media has long battered Detroit’s inability to build competitive compact and subcompact cars, and in the post-bailout atmosphere of redemption, these headlines definitely help reassure Americans about the value of their “investment.” Unfortunately (if unsurprisingly), however, these pieces gloss over the full truth of the situation. Yes, Ford and GM are enjoying improved sales success with small cars. The “U.S. auto industry,” on the other hand, isn’t actually getting all that much out of the situation, beyond some fluffily positive press. Here’s why:
We’ve already asked the cui bono question about Japan’s post-tsunami parts paralysis, and though opinions vary about precisely cui will be doing the bonoing, it’s clear that some are already doing better than others. For more clarity on the developing picture, hit the jump for TTAC’s roundup of the latest parts paralysis news. (Read More…)
The Japanese tsunami impacts everything, from cars to toilet paper. Most Japanese car makers were closed since after the catastrophe and will remain closed at least until mid April. Many paper mills are in the affected area, and all paper, from glossy stock to the softer kind, is in short supply. Publishers of Japanese illustrated pulp fiction have canceled the printed version and direct their readers to the Internet instead. Tokyo corporations battle a wave of toilet rolls vanishing from their restrooms, from where they find a way to the toire at home. While these may be temporary outages, the lack of stable electrical power emerges more and more as the biggest impediment to the recovery of the Japanese industry. It will affect you and your car, in one way or the other. (Read More…)
Volkswagen workers in Wolfsburg are looking forward to a long weekend. No work on Monday, come back Tuesday. Are people not buying enough cars? Im Gegenteil. They are buying too many. Volkswagen is seriously running out of parts. (Read More…)