If you think it's hard keeping up with the auto industry on a daily basis, you should try figuring out what the future holds. Just five years ago, no one would have predicted an aircraft executive would be running Ford, Chrysler'd still be selling Vipers (or Pacificas or much of anything) or GM would be embracing hybrids. So what's going to happen in the next five or ten years? It's hard to say. But since we've never been known to lack for an opinion on anything, here's a look at the future, TTAC-style.
GMNA Files for Nonprofit Status – After losing money for the past 25 years, General Motors North America filed with the IRS for status as a non-profit organization. CFO-for-Life Fritz Henderson explained the rationale behind the move: "After all that business with the Volt's windshield wipers, we finally realized we're never going to turn a profit with our North American operation. So Rick and I decided we should get the maximum benefit from our situation and write-off the salaries of all our executives." In other news, GM said it was developing a new, rear wheel-drive platform for its "premium economy" Saab, Saturn, Pontiac, Buick and Cadillac models.
Ford Renews Wagner's Contract – Even though Mercury's last customer died five years ago, Ford has announced that they've extended spokesperson Jill Wagner's contract for another three years. "Jill's got– I mean is our finest asset," said Ford's President of Public Appearances, Mark Fields. "She'll continue to appeal– I mean appear in all our commercials." When asked why there were no cars shown in the ads, Fields replied "That's not part of the process."
smart USA Announces New Marketing Program – smart USA has revealed that they've formed a partnership with NBC's reality show "The Biggest Loser" to promote their ailing automotive brand. Spokesman Harold Clark denied that the company had asked Mark Burnett to change the show's title to "The Smallest Loser," and promised that the product placement deal would show the slow-selling city car in a highly favorable light. "This year, the first person to lose enough to fit into the smart wins the contest and the car. Additional prizes will be given to those contestants who finish the show weighing less than the fortwo." When reminded that the brand's tie-in with the reality show "Little People. Big World" hadn't stemmed the sales slump, Clark replied "I told you not to tell me that."
Lincoln Introduces New Model – Ford's worldwide luxury Lincoln division unveiled their new MK7W8R4Z. The new model's based on the latest U.S.-spec four-door Ford Focus. Continuing Lincoln's new "Reach Backwards" theme, it features a four-cylinder engine connected to a five-speed automatic transmission, with an upright grille, padded vinyl top and spare tire bulge in the deck lid. The MK7W8R4Z comes with SYNC 6.7, which promises to fix the bugs found in SYNC version 1.0 to 6.6.
Chrysler Completes Outsourcing – Cerberus has completed the final stages of Chrysler's "It's a New Day" program by licensing the Jeep name to Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M). This marks the end of Cerberus' venture into auto manufacturing. Over the last two years, they licensed the Chrysler model names to China's Chery and the Dodge model names to India's Tata Motors. "This certainly is a ‘New Day' for Cerberus, as they reap license fees from M&M Jeeps and Tata Magnums," explained former Chrysler CEO Bob Nardelli from his yacht, the Golden Parachute.
Kirk Kerkorian Dead at 117 – The AP reports that billionaire Kirk Kerkorian died three years ago at the age of 117. Friends of the "Lion of Las Vegas" were shocked by the news. "Who knew? Kerkorian mouthpiece Jerry York had spoken for him for so long that everyone just took it on faith that he was saying what Kerkorian told him." "I just thought he was taking another nap," York explained. "Anyway, I've worked for him so long that I knew what he wanted in any given situation. I just didn't see the point of bothering him." When questioned about the future of Kirkorian's Tracinda Corporation, York indicated he wasn't worried. "Kirk gave me power of attorney 10 years ago."
President Clinton Raises CAFE Standards to 100mpg by 2030 – President Hillary Clinton announced she's working with Congress to raise Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) requirements. "There is no reason why a combination of good old American know-how and massive federal subsidies can't create vehicles capable of driving 100 miles per gallon of E85 gasoline, with zero emissions," Clinton said. When asked how much the new technology would cost the average consumer, President Clinton said "Nothing– at least as far as they know."
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- ToolGuy "Mr. President, no government agency, no think tank, and no polling firm knows more about the automobile customer than us. We talk to customers every day. As retail automotive dealerships, we are agnostic as to what we sell. Our business is to provide customers with vehicles that meet the needs of their budgets and lifestyles.”• How many lies can you fit into one paragraph?
- Spamvw Three on the tree, even Generation X would have a hard time stealing one of those.
- ToolGuy This trend of cyan wheels needs to end NOW.
- Kwik_Shift Interesting nugget(s) of EV follies. https://x.com/WallStreetApes/status/1729212326237327708?s=20
- SaulTigh I've said it before and I'll say it again...if you really cared about the environment you'd be encouraging everyone to drive a standard hybrid. Mature and reliable technology that uses less resources yet can still be conveniently driven cross country and use existing infrastructure.These young people have no concept of how far we've come. Cars were dirty, stinking things when I was a kid. They've never been cleaner. You hardly ever see a car smoking out the tail pipe or smell it running rich these days, even the most clapped out 20 year old POS. Hybrids are even cleaner.