A Quick Time Out to Discuss "Hate"

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
a quick time out to discuss hate

Yesterday, I had a long conversation with Chris Isidore, CNNMoney scribe. Somewhere in the middle of our rhetorical hockey match, Chris threw down the gloves. “There are a lot of people who hate Detroit,” he said. “They want to see it crash and burn.” I was flabbergasted. As I’ve mentioned here previously, I reckon that the percentage of people who “hate” Motown is relatively small, limited to eco-warriors and people who were treated like shit by D2.8 dealers. It certainly doesn’t apply to me. I hate hypocrisy and bureaucracy bungling. But I have always wanted to see healthy, vital and yes, America-owned automobile manufacturers. Painting the anti-bailout brigade as a bunch of “Detroit haters” is unfair and inflammatory. (Isidore’s own CNNMoney has a particularly egregious example on display this morning.) As TTAC’s Best and Brightest have said time and time again, you can be anti-bailout AND pro-Detroit. I call on my journalist colleagues to consider ALL the possibilities in their coverage. After all, it’s their audience’s money. OK, back to work…

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  • Sciencebzzt Sciencebzzt on Nov 14, 2008

    I couldn't have said it better myself. Too many people are calling us cheerleaders and painting the picture that we're happy about GM's failure. As always, people miss the point. http://www.ridelust.com/autoblogs-make-work-bias-and-the-truth-about-the-gm-bailout/

  • Bozoer Rebbe Bozoer Rebbe on Nov 14, 2008

    From another thread: They are absolutely out of touch with their customers, in part because they are in that backward looking nostalgic quagmire that is southeastern Michigan. Yep, Robert, Nobody is dissing the folks who live around Detroit. Nope, not at all. These must not be the droids I'm looking for.

  • Davey49 Davey49 on Nov 14, 2008

    My local D3 dealers are all pretty good. The Ford dealer has improved greatly as of late. The GM dealers have always been excellent. The local Honda dealer is excellent but the Toyota dealers are poor.

  • FromBrazil FromBrazil on Nov 15, 2008

    Though this is not specifically about the Big 3 (though it touches on Ford) if you like, hear me out. I don't think its really "hate" per se, its more like a perception that car makers (in general) don't care! Everyboy talks about how aftersales service is so important why don't car makers get it? Down here, almost all dealers, come review time, try to add a whole bunch of mostly unnecessary extra services (like fuel injector cleaning, I ask why if they're supposed to be self-cleansing?). This is part of the came. As a smart consumer you just say no, demand what's in the manual and make clear you won't put up with any crap. Friendly, stress-free? Certainly not, but that's how it works. And the result is that after the warranty expires, people just don't go back to the dealer. Can't they see they're shooting themselves in the foot? As anybody who's read my comments can attest, I'm a Fiat guy. But even so, after a run of about 4 of their cars, I got sick of the sealer experience. Mind you, the dealers not the cars. And so I shopped around. Because of that Fiat lost about 3 sales and my business for about 5 years. Now I'm back in the fold though and I'm happy to report the dealer experience is much improved making me positive another Fiat car is a possibility in the mid term ('cause now I have a brand new car and a 2 year old one 'cause I knew the crunch was coming and I hurried to beat it). on the other hand, to get rid of a POS Ford Ka I bought brand new last year I took the financial hit. The dealers were helpful and all, the company even called me a couple of times (Even though the e-mail I sent to Ford USA complaning was answered in a very perfunctory kind of way I didn't appreciate), but they just didn't fix the lemon. Instead of changing it for me, an losing some cash, they preferred to see me wander off and buy a car from a competitor (Renault and one who in Brazil is hot going after Ford's 4th place in the market). In other words, they preferred to save a little money upfront than invest in making more money down the line. Stupid? Me thinks. But, do I hate Ford? No. Will I be buying their product anytime soon? No. I don't know how badly ripped off Americans were in the 70s and 80s, but it must have been mayor for so many of you to hate your home companies. Don't do that. It's not worth it. And the American landscape will be much poorer if they die, everybody driving Civics and Corollas and CRVS and whatnot. End of rant.