By on April 11, 2012

Automotive News reports, with their usual straight face, that “GM sees new models spurring rebound from lower U.S. market share.” The question isn’t whether GM has made this claim before, but how many times it has made it.

For me, flashbacks from the 1980s and 1990s continue to roll in. Some of those times I believed that promising new cars actually would turn GM around. But at this point I’m with Alex Taylor III, who recounted in his 2010 memoir:

“My first cover story for Time, dated September 9, 1980, quoted [Roger] Smith, then an executive vice president, as likening the company to a hockey team in the midst of a line change. As soon as all the players are on the ice, he was certain, GM would be competitive again. It was an excuse I would hear again and again from GM: ‘We’re not doing so well right now, but wait until you see the new models we have coming next year.’ As often as not, the market ignored the new GM models when they did arrive.”

After basing a few too many stories on GM’s predictions, Taylor eventually lost faith in them. One can only be proven wrong so many times…unless you’re a GM PR exec.

Perhaps we can have a contest. Who can track down the most previous GM claims that upcoming models would reverse its market share slide? To keep it simple, we’ll only count a max of one per model year. Bonus points: which models were supposed to save GM’s bacon?

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62 Comments on “QOTD: How Many Times Has GM Made This Claim Before?...”


  • avatar

    Meh. We’re in an uncharted new world, one in which GM’s recent new products have actually turned out to be competitive. I think there’s a very good chance that they will in fact get back up to 20%ish once they get through this big overhaul… say 15-18 months from now.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      Rolling out competitive models will probably stabilize GM’s market share, but I don’t see this being enough to dramatically raise it. Other car makers aren’t sitting around, waiting for GM to roll out new models before deciding how to respond. It’s a brutally competitive market these days.

      • 0 avatar
        NormSV650

        Now that Earthquake/Tsunami 2012 just hit Asia, looks like domestics will be rolling in the dough. And of course ttac will have weekly updates for the rest of the year.

      • 0 avatar
        geeber

        So GM will gain market share because its major competitors are crippled by a natural disaster? That’s hardly a rousing vote of confidence in GM.

    • 0 avatar
      M.S. Smith

      There’s some typical GM speak. Make something average, call it “competitive.”

      How about making something that’s undeniably great? How about shooting for that instead?

      • 0 avatar

        Go drive a new Cruze, then a new Corolla or Civic, then come back and talk to us about who’s “average” and who’s not.

      • 0 avatar
        M.S. Smith

        I have driven a Cruze. It’s not as good as a Focus or an Elantra. I think its telling that you automatically compare the car to the least interesting and least refined vehicles in the segment rather than the best.

      • 0 avatar
        geeber

        Comparisons to the Civic and Corolla are appropriate, because they have set the standard in the past, and the Civic is either number one in sales for its segment, or in hot pursuit of whatever is.

        I’ve driven the Cruze, and while it’s better than the Corolla, which is turning into the Valiant/Dart of the 21st century, it’s not necessarily better than the Civic.

      • 0 avatar

        Actually, I was comparing it to the top-selling vehicles in the segment. I would (and did) buy a Focus over a Cruze, but the Cruze in person is a lot better than everyone thinks it is.

      • 0 avatar
        stryker1

        Smith. Go drive a Cruze, then come back. Seriously, if you’re shopping in that market it beats the pants off of everything. It drives better than the elantra and the automatic is head and shoulders over the focus’s automatic. Its a fantastic commuter vehicle (which is what most people use cars for).

      • 0 avatar
        M.S. Smith

        I already told you I drove a Cruze. Maybe you read good some day, huh?

    • 0 avatar
      stryker1

      +1. The difference now is that GM has good examples to point to in the Cruze and the Sonic.

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    Bonus points: which models were supposed to save GM’s bacon?

    Unfair question, the right answer is all of them from about the mid 1970s till the present day.

    Who can track down the most previous GM claims that upcoming models would reverse its market share slide?

    This is an impossible question, akin to asking “How many women has Jack Baruth lusted after in his lifetime?”

    • 0 avatar

      Well, I did limit it to once per model year! I think there have been some years since 1980 when GM didn’t claim next year’s cars would turn things around.

      The 1970s don’t count, as GM actually did turn its share around with new cars in the late 1970s, so much so that both Ford and Chrysler were circling the drain.

      • 0 avatar
        Educator(of teachers)Dan

        Sorry Michael I was thinking of the every few years claim at a new “small car” would be the companies dragon slaying answer to the imports. GM has been doing that since at least the Vega and possibly the Corvair before that.

        The Cruze likely is an answer to those imports but speaking of Baruth I was thinking of his Cruze review and his wish for a good small car to come out of GM.

    • 0 avatar
      rnc

      Read “On a clear day you can see GM” and “Call me Jack” back to back and be amazed as Delorean’s completely dysfunctional, but lowest cost (us producer) and massive dealer network made it basically indestructible, and then you come to Jack (the book was titled because it was written by Smith’s speech writer, after working for him for 3 years, jack would still walk up and introduce himself as if they had never met, with the closing statement “Call Me Jack). There was a reason the GM system was designed to never give a Chairman more than 2 years to do anything to the company. Jack got 10 years, spent $80 billion ((80’s dollars)(+) to turn GM into the highest cost producer, while being even more dysfunctional than delorean’s world.

      Jack 1981 – Robotics will replace UAW (aka we’ll finally show them what their sit down strike got them)
      Save……….
      Save…….
      Union fault……
      Save…….
      Damn UAW…..
      Saturn……..

      Figured I would only cover 7 of his years

      (Somewhere I stumbled across photos of GM’s factory of the future (at the time), that had to have ten times the UAW employees it was supposed to (who spent most of their time staring at the broken dysfunctional robots in fear).

      Took one incompetent power freak surrounded by yes men (reading irreconcilable differences, story of GM and Perot is also helpful) to destroy GM, Same thing happened to AT&T (as we once knew it), one all powerful CEO surrounded by to little with too much time to do damage.

      Back to the original system, Chairman usually got 2 years, any damage done could be quickly undone, and any wildly unrealistic dreams of the company’s future could be quickly forgotten. Even Delorean’s dysfunctional GM had such massive reserves that they went out of thier way not to destroy Ford amd ChryCo(eerily like Toyota, people look at their cash hoard and assume they’ll be just fine, in 1980 GM had those reserves)

  • avatar
    morbo

    ” How Many Times Has GM Made This Claim Before?”

    My guesstimate: 143 Times

    40 years since last competitive car (say 1970-ish) *
    4 Quarters per year of underperforming results to explain away –
    minus 6 SUV boom years (24 quarters) in the 90’s and Noughties +
    Plus Extra press releases for Gulf War 1, 9/11, gulf War 2 : The Revengenation, the ‘we’re not going bankrupt press release’, the ‘we’re bankrupt’ notice, the gubment bailout notice, and the GM 2.0 : Electric bugaloo stock offering notice

  • avatar
    Philosophil

    I was going to say something about ‘the boy who cried wolf,’ but the moral of that story presupposes the possibility that such claims could actually turn out to be true.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    Are they passing out ’29’ buttons again? How about ’17’?

  • avatar
    NormSV650

    Funny, when things are going the way of a company let’s pick up on bad times in it’as past? So how are last years sales, two years out of bankruptcy?

  • avatar
    WaftableTorque

    There’s always 4 statements I see every year by either automotive journalists or PR flacks:

    1) “This is the best handling Porsche 911 yet! The last generation had such woolen handling at the limits.”
    2) “You do not need rustproofing for cars with today’s galvanized steel construction.”
    3) “Diesels are now clean, not like the pollution monsters from just 5 years ago.”

    And finally,
    4) “We’re just about to turn the corner when we introduce our next GM/Ford/Chrysler models!”

    Some things in life are too predictable.

  • avatar
    indi500fan

    That pic of Roger B. Smith brings back memories.
    Specifically of the GM Stockholders meeting held in 92 in Ft. Wayne Indiana.

    A stockholder on the floor grabbed the mike and refused to let the meeting proceed until Roger B. (who was out of mgmt but still on the Board) autographed the guys’ video tape of “Roger and Me”.

    The whole meeting was a circus like that, LOL.

  • avatar
    PintoFan

    I’m not sure why most of the writers for this website are convinced that only General Motors makes questionable statements about the competitiveness of its products, or its future direction as an automaker. It’s almost as if they think GM has a duty to be dismissive of itself, or that PR people shouldn’t be doing their jobs. Is it really that shocking that a corporate PR department would try to put a positive spin on the future of a company?

    Where is the skepticism for Nissan, or for Volkswagen, or for any other company that has made fairly bold claims about what their market share will be in five years?

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      Please show me where VW and Nissan have, over the last 30 years, repeatedly said that they were going to gain market share once the new (insert model names here) debuted, and ended up continuing to LOSE market share. Then we’ll talk.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        Easy enough. VW was supposed to make major gains in market share going in to the 1980’s the introduction of the Jetta and other water-cooled cars, but by 1990 they were considering pulling out of North America entirely and were a completely marginal brand in the US until about 5 years ago. Nissan and Mitsubshi would have had the market for Japanese cars almost to themselves by the end of the 1970’s, but the were almost destroyed entirely by Toyota and Honda in the 1980’s because their new models simply were not as competitive as claimed. Remember, nobody considered Nissan to be a major player in the U.S. market until sometime in the mid-2000’s.

      • 0 avatar
        geeber

        That doesn’t prove that VW and Nissan repeatedly made claims about increasing market share, only to watch market share fall, which is what GM has done.

        It only proves that both companies made major mistakes in the United States market during the 1980s. And since both have since actually improved their U.S. sales and market share since the mid-1990s, I don’t believe that they can be compared to GM.

      • 0 avatar
        tonyola

        VW released a 30-minute infomercial in 1995 which basically admitted that VW had been making mistakes and sales were way down, but things were really gonna be better. The upcoming New Beetle was trotted out as a promise for the future.

      • 0 avatar
        geeber

        From a market share standpoint, things did get better for VW after 1995. Market share in 1995 was about .7 percent; it would rise to over 2 percent by 2002, before falling again. It went below 1.5 percent in 2005, but it has edged back up again in recent years.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        There isn’t a single car company (with the exception of some high-end exotic marques) in the United States doesn’t want to improve its market share. Saying that neither Nissan or VW have tried and failed to increase market share in the past is simple denial of history and common sense. With every new generation of vehicle, each car company will try to make gains in market share, some more successfully than others.

        You say they made mistakes. I’ll cut through the spin and say they built crappy and/or esoteric products and got punished by the market as a result. Building up a 1 or 2% gain in market share over a decade doesn’t erase that legacy of failure. I realize the same argument could be turned against me, but in the case of GM we’re talking about the largest car company in the world and the United States. They have the kind of resources to develop products for the American market that VW and Nissan simply don’t have.

      • 0 avatar
        mkirk

        Not so much about market share, but VW is constantly touting improved reliability…a claim which I have found to be possibly more dubious than those from GM.

      • 0 avatar
        geeber

        You appear to have missed the point of the article. It did not say that GM has made mistakes. It pointed out that GM has repeatedly claimed that the latest new vehicle or vehicles would reverse its market share losses and help it to regain market share.

        Which, of course, has not happened since the downsized full-size, intermediate and personal luxury cars hit the market for 1977, 1978 and 1979, respectively.

        VW and Nissan have increased their market share since the 1990s. That’s not spin; that’s a fact. Increasing market share from .5 percent, to over 2 percent, as VW did from 1995 to 2002, isn’t exactly an easy feat. The difference between VW and GM is that VW has experienced ups and downs in market share; with GM, the direction has been consistent – down.

        If any company has a “legacy of failure” in the United States, it is GM. It has gone from 45 percent of the market to about 20 percent, and it was bankrupt by late 2008. And don’t blame it on the financial crisis. The company should have filed for bankruptcy around 2005-06.

        If GM has all of these resources to develop top-notch products, why have so many of them been mediocre at best?

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      The idea of “being number one” in market share is engrained in the GM corporate culture. Other automakers don’t have this same fixation on dominating market share because unlike GM, they weren’t historically the market share leaders.

      The greatest legacy costs in Detroit have been ideological, not financial. Being “number one”, even if it produces losses, isn’t sensible from an outsider’s perspective. But dysfunctional cultures have a way of transforming bad ideas into hallowed principles that are forever defended, even if those ideas fail.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        I don’t think the sentiment you’re expressing is unique to GM. Both VW and Toyota have also demonstrated a fairly extreme drive to gain the number one spot. I understand that isn’t exactly the same as what you’re articulating here, but the net effect is. Both can lead to behaviors which are “successful” in the short term but destructive to the overall health of the company. GM is not alone in making those kinds of mistakes.

    • 0 avatar

      The other companies’ market share hasn’t been declining since 1962.

      The entire point of this piece is that GM is widely known to have made this claim so many times, and been proven wrong virtually all of them, that it’s amazing they’d have the nerve to make it again.

      Maybe they will reverse their decline. But I’d suggest doing it first, and talking about it afterwards.

      • 0 avatar
        bunkie

        Your point is well taken. But it must be remembered that, in the end, the boy did actually see the wolf.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        When you consider GM’s position relative to the rest of the world market in 1962 (especially considering the developing world and a re-industrializing Europe), it was inevitable that their market share would have declined regardless of how the company was managed. It would be the equivalent of saying that the United States would always remain the world’s #1 garment exporter in 1970. The real question is to what extent management exacerbated that loss, or if external factors were more to blame.

      • 0 avatar
        geeber

        I don’t believe that GM lost market share and went bankrupt because it built vehicles that were just too good for customers to appreciate.

        The main “external factor” was that, from about 1981 on, rival manufacturers ranging from Ford to Toyota to BMW built superior vehicles.

      • 0 avatar
        tonyola

        geeber…

        When Ford and Chrysler found themselves in financial trouble in the late 1970s and early 1980s, they took drastic steps to return to profitability – they slashed costs, cut payrolls from top to bottom, eliminated wasteful practices, reorganized, and became lean and mean. It was tough medicine but it succeeded and by the mid 1980s both companies were well back into the black. Ford took drastic steps again in 2005-2006 when it found itself in trouble once more, including hocking everything in sight for development funds.

        All through this time, GM believed it could carry on just as always. They did some on-paper reorganizing and token cost-cutting but it didn’t mean much. GM’s cars were a factor in the company’s failure, including GM’s later policy of letting the passenger cars coast while concentrating on trucks and SUVs. That turned out to be a disastrous policy by 2008. However, it was gross and inept management that was the big push towards bankruptcy.

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        The automobile is a textbook example of an economy of scale product. GM had more of that scale than the entire rest of the world combined.

        Applied correctly, that would have let them build cheaper, better, more profitable cars such that small upstarts would never have a chance.

        GM’s position in the 60s makes the 50 years of incessant failure since all the more inexcusable.

      • 0 avatar
        tonyola

        What’s funny is that when GM announced it was introducing a huge line of FWD X-cars for 1979, that had car companies everywhere shaking in their boots. Here was the 800-pound gorilla of the auto industry preparing to enter the lucrative FWD compact market. Not only were the Japanese makers concerned, but even some Europeans felt that the X-cars could mean the first serious onslaught of American cars in Europe in decades – an invasion.

        Of course, it all turned out different. The X-cars ended up being somewhat less than promised and that was even before all the reliability problems and recalls began.

  • avatar
    VanillaDude

    GM is unique in that they constantly set themselves up in a HUGE PR launch of what ends up to be a flaming lemon of a vehicle.

    They do this because they can do this. They have the money and the history of making anything they manufacture into a non-stop advertising campaign within every media that can be bought. Because they purchase and get any amount of our focus time they desire, we end up hearing about how their products will change our world.

    GM knows of no “off” switch. You see the Volt campaign. GM can’t figure out how to sell it. It isn’t an Impala. If it was, then we would be seeing it sold with the same ad campaign they have used over the past fifty years. GM doesn’t know why their customers buy their cars, because GM people don’t buy their cars. Instead, they give some poor ad agency a billion dollars and not a single clue as to what the hell they are selling.

    Mistakes will be made. Repeatedly. And they have.

    GM naturally bloviates high expectations on products they haven’t even a smidge of knowledge about once these products reach an assembly line. Because the bloviators feel their job is completed once JOB number one falls off the assembly line. The bloviators have other products to bloviate over and have moved on. What difference doees it make to the bloviators how badly their puffed up pieces of plastic and steel actually meet expectations? That’s someone else problem. They see their job done when the back cover of last month’s National Geographic touts their latest miracle car.

    GM has a big mouth. They use it to get everyone’s expectation high, then give us their latest version of the Vega-Volt. They need to get their homework done before they brag about their grades.

  • avatar
    jpcavanaugh

    GM is still GM. Chrysler was like a patch of dandelions ripped up at the roots, replaced with what is hoped to be some nice shoots of grass in their place. GM is like the yellow and white parts got lopped off by the mower, but the dandelions are still there.

    GM stil has the weakest management of any major auto company. They have introduced two new Buicks over the last year or two. I should know, but cannot tell you the difference between a Verano and a Regal.

    Chrysler makes cars that makes people want them, although many don’t buy because of quality fears. Ford makes (at least some) cars that make people want them, and seems to be making strides in quality. GM seems to have its quality up a bit, but (personally speaking) makes almost nothing that makes me want it. OK, a CTS-V, but I am not in that market. GM used to be able to sell those vanilla pudding kinds of cars to its large pool of loyal buyers. Those people are about gone.

    • 0 avatar
      Educator(of teachers)Dan

      Right JPC, it is sad when given that I grew up in a GM family (and my father is still driving a Torrent and a mid 90s Suburban) that the only GM products on my radar as possible next rides are the old W-body Impala (finally got it right after over 20 years of GM10 production), Buick Lucerne (that isn’t even in production anymore), and Chevy Cruze. If the new products are as good as the Cruze they might have a shot.

      BTW I CAN tell the difference between a Regal and a Verano but only because the Verano’s taillights are so undersized compared to the rump of the car they make me chuckle.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      @JPC….I like the “patch of dandelions” story. Its kind’a funny really…..but oh so true.

  • avatar
    OldandSlow

    With a few exceptions GM during the Roger Smith Era had at least four divisions/brands sharing the same platform, similar power trains and 90% of their sheet metal for each brand’s entry to a particular segment.

    My perception of GM over the past 30 years is usually arrived late to many new market segments – rather than being first one in the showrooms – and – their products more often than not smacked of being mediocre – maybe because of spending too much time in committees.

    In short GM became a me too! manufacturer in some of the more important up and coming segments.

    * Small pickups gained traction in the mid to late 1970’s. GM builds their first in-house S-10 in the early 80’s.

    * Chrysler by default of their reliance on FWD platforms showed up with FWD mini-vans that drive like cars in the 1980’s. GM doesn’t get the driveability aspect right and showed up with a pretty good top hat its the Astro – that drove like an S-10 with a tall body. In the 1990’s GM finally produced a FWD mini-van.

    * In the 1990’s – Honda, Subaru and Toyota each begin to build a car-like FWD CUV. – GM eventually took a spin with the Aztec, but more importantly Chevrolet didn’t get the Equinox until 2004.

    .

  • avatar
    Joe McKinney

    There were a lot of screw-ups and wasted opportunities during the 1980’s and 1990’s.

    1980 – X-Cars
    1984 – NUMMI
    1988 – W-Body
    1990 – Saturn

  • avatar
    newfdawg

    Call it the classic case of the Boy Who Called Wolf, but GM has made so many claims of being on the verge of turnaround I no longer give any validity to their claims. The vehicles they are manufacturing and selling MAY be superior to their past efforts, but until I am
    absolutely certain a GM automobile I buy will not become a maintenance and repair nightmare, I’m staying clear of their products.
    Like the song says: “Ain’t gonna get fooled again.”

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    Kind of pointless dwelling in the past all the time. I like to live in there here and now. Right now I can go buy a Cruze which is a better car than the current panned by even CR Civic, the outdated Corolla and the overrated Elantra which as has been stated numerous times doesn’t get it’s rated mileage, has a harsh ride, is noisier than some of the other cars and some interior materials are downright terrible like the piss poor tan cloth seat material that is all but impossible to clean and keep cleaned. The 2011 Elantra my buddy owned annoyed him so much he eventually traded it in for a Altima which he likes much better. The new Malibu proved to be a very formidable mid size entry on a recent long test drive, the current Equinox has impressed the hell out of every owner I have questioned, the LaCrosse though flawed is selling well and even beat out the ES 350 in some magazine articles and the little Sonic is a very strong entry that really put a smile on my fellow co-workers face every time he talks about it. Even the Regal is a great car in need of a proper V6 engine. The new upcoming Impala looks very promising, new improved engines are on the way and the 2014 Silverado/Siera look to be very strong new entries so yeah I would say that GM has a good shot at staying the largest selling car maker in the years ahead and the current claims are justified by very good overall products.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    Kind of pointless dwelling in the past all the time. I like to live in there here and now. Right now I can go buy a Cruze which is a better car than the current panned by even CR Civic, the outdated Corolla and the overrated Elantra which as has been stated numerous times doesn’t get it’s rated mileage, has a harsh ride, is noisier than some of the other cars and some interior materials are downright terrible like the piss poor tan cloth seat material that is all but impossible to clean and keep cleaned. The 2011 Elantra my buddy owned annoyed him so much he eventually traded it in for a Altima which he likes much better. The new Malibu proved to be a very formidable mid size entry on a recent long test drive, the current Equinox has impressed the hell out of every owner I have questioned, the LaCrosse though flawed is selling well and even beat out the ES 350 in some magazine articles and the little Sonic is a very strong entry that really put a smile on my fellow co-workers face every time he talks about it. Even the Regal is a great car in need of a proper V6 engine. The new upcoming Impala looks very promising, new improved engines are on the way and the 2014 Silverado/Sierra look to be very strong new entries so yeah I would say that GM has a good shot at staying the largest selling car maker in the years ahead and the current claims are justified by very good overall products.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      Consumer Reports gives the Chevrolet Cruze its worst rating for predicted reliability as of February 2012. Other than reality, everything has changed.

      • 0 avatar

        As of April 2012 CR is still using data from April 2011. Just because the issue is recent you should not assume their data is recent. As I’ve noted in detail quite a few times (but yet not enough?) it never is.

        The Cruze’s recent reliability could be quite good (TrueDelta’s much more recent data suggest as much), but CR wouldn’t have a clue and would keep reporting old, inaccurate information as if it were current information.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        People have been saying GM now makes cars well ever since the moment the majority figured out that they don’t make cars well. So now we’re supposed to believe GM figured it out this year? This conversation is as timeless as GM saying they’re going to reverse their market share trend. GM is always making good cars, and they’ve always just started to do so. Repeating the same behavior and expecting a different outcome is insanity. So is believing that GM now makes good cars.

    • 0 avatar
      Good ole dayz

      Uh, pleez. Ponchoman49, the GM recipe doesn’t work. It is:

      Take two cups of GM’s multi-decade corporate tradition of poor quality, and multi-decade corporate culture of mediocrity;

      Add in one cup of UAW featherbedding and slacker mentality;

      Add in two cups of legacy costs and UAW work rules, prompting GM (and the other domestics) to spec lower mean time to failure components and squeeze its suppliers, in order to attempt to lower production costs to something resembling its UAW-free competitors;

      Add in a gallon of U.S. government and UAW ownership and calling the shots, and you get …

      A great, big stinking batch of crap products by Government Motors.

  • avatar
    getacargetacheck

    I remember being genuinely hopeful when Bob Stempel was promoted. Here’s an article that might surprise some of TTAC’s younger readers:

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=qchQAAAAIBAJ&sjid=b9AMAAAAIBAJ&pg=5297,2362314&dq=robert+stempel+market+share&hl=en

  • avatar
    bodegabob

    I had a Cruze as a rental for a week. Though the handling was enjoyable, the 1.4 turbo behaves like a 1.4 off the line. Zero torque while trying to get across 4 lanes of semi-truck traffic from zero MPH caused me some stress. Also, this is one of the only new cars I can remember driving in the last 20 years that didn’t start on the first try every time. “rrrrrr. . .rrrrrr. . . ROOAWRRRR”. Reminded me of those groovy days of the 70’s.

    I’ll keep my Mazda.

  • avatar

    I have a silly question: why does anyone care?

    Not “even care about GM”, but care about the day-to-day announcements of auto corporations’ PR machines.

    More accurately, taking the time to debate and discuss the validity of corporate PR announcements. Like…why is this an enjoyable activity?

    (I’m aware of the meta-irony of me asking this question)

  • avatar
    rudiger

    Ah, good ‘ole Roger Smith. Whether deserved or not, the poster boy for all that went wrong with GM and took them down the road to ruin. I’ve always wondered if he’d still be remembered in such a negative light if it weren’t for Roger & Me.

    As to GM’s constant, yearly media proclamations about success being ‘just around the corner’, well, it is GM. What does anyone really expect them to say?

    OTOH, it’d be nice if they changed up the message once in a while, just to make it look good, though. It doesn’t seem like it’d be too hard to do for a corporation as big as GM (or as large as they used to be, anyway).

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    The only products that actually did sell well in past 15 years:
    New versions of Full sized Pickups, Escalade, CTS, Enclave, and Cruze.

    By the way, GM sold the Chevy LUV truck in the 70’s, and the Equinox was just a newer, bigger Geo Tracker, which they had before the CR-V.

  • avatar
    highdesertcat

    With GM, as with the other domestic auto manufacturers, it has always been the same slogan, year after year, “NEW, IMPROVED, BETTER THAN EVER!!!”

    And every year, for the past four decades it has been the same let down. SOSO: Same old same old. Or SSDD: Same sh!t, different day.

    What GM needs to do is replace its old OHV pushrods with state of the art 32-valve DOHC V8 engines in its half-ton trucks, and while they are at it, reverse engineer the new Chrysler Pentastar 24-valve DOHC VVT V6. That would go a long way to improving anything from GM.

    For GM to approach being consistently profitable it needs to shed itself of GMC and Buick and focus on its core brands: Chevrolet and Cadillac.

    GM could instill confidence in its products by doing what made Hyundai so successful: provide a 10-year/100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty.

    All this talk about ‘future’ GM products is just so much hog wash. At the rate GM is going, it won’t be around for 2016, unless the taxpayers provide even more money for this zombie.

    Opel is a gushing wound and the French connection is losing money faster than even Obama can spend it.

    The current and future line-up of GM products can’t even come close to those from Ford or Fiatsler, and GM isn’t even in the same ball park as the foreigners.

  • avatar
    msquare

    Same old haters, same old hate.

    This being April, there are 30 Major League Baseball teams who will tell you they all have a chance of winning the World Series this year. 29 are full of it.

    So when GM paints a rosy picture of its immediate future for its customers and stockholders, it is actually behaving like any other business. You expect them to be pessimistic? There are people who make careers of crunching the numbers and coming to their own conclusions. They’re there for a reason.

    And GM’s current products are definitely competitive in their market segments. I might actually believe their market-share forecasts this time because independent sources back it up. Sure, they catch a break because of Japan’s recent natural disasters, but if their cars were anything like they were even 5 years ago, the Koreans would be eating their lunch. They’re good, but they’re not.

    Do some research, crunch the numbers and back up the hate with something substantial. Otherwise it’s the same old drivel.

  • avatar
    windswords

    Just 2 or 3 years ago there were many on this site who said that Chrysler should be put out of it’s misery so that GM would have a better chance of making it. I pointed out that GM was the better candidate in this game of automotive life boat to throw over the side because it would benefit both Chrysler and Ford. GM was too broken, would cost too much money, and take too much time to fix (IF – it could be fixed). Chrysler on the other hand could quickly be back in health with the right leaders and products. Now I have never been for hoping or helping a company go out of business. I believe the market should make that decision not a government and certainly not an enthusiast site. But it’s nice to be proven right.

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