GM and Its Hybrid Partners Shun Cars

Frank Williams
by Frank Williams
gm and its hybrid partners shun cars

GM's humongous hybrid SUV's have garnered a lot of attention and copped a few awards, thanks to what is admittedly a pretty slick drivetrain (and even slicker PR campaign). What GM isn't publicizing is that it isn't "their" drivetrain; it was developed jointly with BMW and DaimlerChrysler. When the divorce became final, Daimler and Chrysler got joint custody, so now four different manufacturers get to share the wealth. The Detroit Free Press has a list of all the models where you can expect to see them use the magic tranny that makes it all work. While improving truck mileage is a good thing, cars are conspicuously absent from this list. So if you don't want to buy a truck but want more than GM's semi-hybrid passenger cars, you'll still have to look towards the Brands of the Rising Sun. It makes one wonder if they're avoiding that market because the system won't work in anything smaller than an SUV, and/or they don't want the inevitable comparison with class-leader Toyota Prius.

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4 of 13 comments
  • Sherman Lin Sherman Lin on Feb 21, 2008

    This will simply cause further erosion of their market share of car sales. So much for being serious about cars.

  • KixStart KixStart on Feb 21, 2008

    Bunter, You may be right. In which case, it's $20K towards the boat.

  • Geotpf Geotpf on Feb 21, 2008

    A hybrid SUV is a dumb idea. Let's face it, most people use them to carry around a bunch of rugrats, not to climb Mount Everest or to tow a huge trailer around. If somebody needs to carry around a bunch of rugrats and cares about fuel economy, they aren't buying a SUV, they are buying a minivan. Now, a hybrid minivan is a great idea. First company who makes one wins!

  • Paul Milenkovic Paul Milenkovic on Feb 21, 2008

    What's a Lambda? Is that the Acadia cute-ute buggy I see taking football fans from Lambeau Field on Highway 41? Does it share a platform with a GM car the way a Ford Escape is supposed to be a Mondeo in reality? What kind of passenger capacity/towing/other utility can you expect from it. If it is 90 percent of what a Yukahoe does, why would anyone buy a Yukahoe, hybrid or not? Is it just a question of fashion, or is there some capability of the frame-rail SUV that the CUV lacks (apart from using more gas and costing more)?