While America Slept. Sunday, January 4, 2009

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
while america slept sunday january 4 2009
A – due to worldwide holiday inertia – very short overview of what happened in other parts of the world while you were in bed. TTAC provides round-the-clock coverage of everything that has wheels. Or has its wheels coming off. Until Jan 4, 2009, WAS is being filed from Tokyo.Japan relieved that Chrysler got the money: The Nikkei (sub) brings its Japanese readership the happy news that “Chrysler LLC received its $4 billion low-interest federal government loan Friday, helping the auto maker continue funding its operations and paying its suppliers for parts.” This is registered with relief amongst JP automakers, as they worry about the health of their suppliers. The Nikkei also points out that “Cerberus is interested in finding a partner for Chrysler.” The search for suitors may be hampered by the fact that Chrysler “relies on North America for about 90% of its overall sales.”Geely has big plans: China’s Geely aims to boost vehicle sales by 25 percent this year by way of new models and government incentives. Geely plans to sell 281,000 units this year, against nearly 225,000 units in 2008, a company official, Zhang Xiaodong, said according to Gasgoo. Geely is the only larger Chinese car maker that has not formed any alliances with foreign counterparts. They just received a $147m line of credit from China Everbright Bank.China should think small: State owned Chinese news agency Xinhua says that “there’s a lesson for China’s car makers in the fate of the ailing U.S. auto industry: develop smaller, fuel-efficient models instead of betting on gas-guzzlers.” Xinhua cites auto analyst Jia Xinguang, who said that “U.S. car makers should not have given up the market for small vehicles,” and urged Chinese auto makers to follow the path of Japan in terms of safe, fuel-saving technologies. It would be an unsustainable pattern of growth for Chinese car makers to merely rely on cheap labor and low auto parts prices, Jia added according to Xinhua. The news agency is often used to convey a subtle message before stronger words from higher-up follow.Daimler thinks there is a great future in hybrids: Beginning this year, they want to launch one new hybrid per year. “From 2012 onwards, hybrid will be optional from C-class on upwards,” said Daimler’s Heinrich Weber to the Handelsblatt. The next generation S-class, which will come to market in 2013, will be available in hybrid only, the Handelsblatt learned. From 2012, all Mercedes cars should be below the European CO2 targets.Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-That’s all folks! There were no more auto news while you slept. At least none that made my RADAR blip. On Monday, there will be no WAS, as my beautiful Japanese import and I will be traveling from Tokyo to Beijing. On Tuesday, after Japan, China, and at least half of Europe have returned to work after the holidays, WAS shall be back in full force.
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  • Robert Schwartz Robert Schwartz on Jan 04, 2009

    So Bertel, I clicked through the link you gave about your wife, who is beautiful, and then a link about your boat. Dude, you are serious, that boat is bad@$$. Tuti respecto, Don.

  • 50merc 50merc on Jan 04, 2009

    Have a nice trip. We'll look forward to WAS' return. Say, Bertel, based on that picture at the link, could it be your boat finished 5th because you were three sheets to the wind?

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