Cadillac Prepping XT4 Production on the Sly at Kansas City's Malibu Plant

General Motors is tooling one of its car plants to build the svelte new Cadillac crossover that’s aimed at fixing the luxury brand’s sales slump in the United States. However, GM is keeping quiet on the move as the XT4’s future hasn’t been officially announced. However, insiders have claimed the automaker has already begun production on test versions of the Cadillac XT4 at its assembly plant in Kansas City.

Cadillac deliveries fell 8 percent last year in the United States and, as crossovers seem to be the sure-fire remedy for every automaker seeking sales, the XT4 could be a godsend. That blessing isn’t isolated to North America either. Adding the more-affordable crossover to the company’s Chinese lineup is equally important.

Read more
Temporary Shutdowns Insufficient; GM Eliminates Shift at Chevrolet Malibu's Kansas Assembly Plant

In September 2017, General Motors will be forced to lay off a large number of workers at its Kansas City, Kansas assembly plant where the Chevrolet Malibu is built.

Only two days ago we learned General Motors would stretch the Fairfax assembly plant’s summer shutdown by an additional three weeks — from two to five in 2017 — because of excessive Malibu inventory. But as GM seeks to maintain a more reasonable grip on incentives than in the past, the only remaining way of reducing an inventory glut is to stop building so many cars.

Unfortunately for some of GM’s Kansas employees, the announcement of a temporary shutdown — the third this year according to the Kansas City Business Journal — will be an insufficient means of reducing stock. The Kansas City Star reports the number of shifts at the plant will be reduced to two in late September.

After Chevrolet’s U.S. midsize sales rapidly elevated to a 36-year high in calendar year 2016 during the ninth-generation Malibu’s launch, volume has declined hard and fast in early 2017.

Read more
Ford Averts Strike at Kansas City F-150 Plant

A late-night deal reached between Ford and Kansas City, Missouri auto workers averted a strike over the weekend.

United Auto Workers Vice President Jimmy Settles in a letter to workers said negotiators reached an agreement late Friday night.

As you know, earlier this week, I gave Ford Motor Company 120-hour notice of our intention to strike at the Kansas City facility if a tentative agreement for their local contract could not be reached. Thankfully, with this evenings (sic) announcement, that action has been averted.

The UAW hasn’t yet announced if it will shift its focus to negotiations with Ford after a majority of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles union workers rejected their proposed deal with the automaker.

Read more
United Auto Workers Union Threatens Strike at Kansas City F-150 Plant

United Auto Workers at the Kansas City, Missouri plant that produces Ford F-150s may strike as early as Sunday if the automaker doesn’t “negotiate in good faith,” according to Jimmy Settles, UAW vice president:

The challenges we face may not be easy, and I certainly cannot predict the future, but I would rather die fighting than to do an injustice to this membership or our institution.

Settles wrote to union members that issues such as “manpower provisions, the national heat stress program, and skilled trades scheduling amongst others” prompted the threatened strike at the Kansas City plant.

Read more
Missouri Law Lets Thieves Scrap Your Classics

Kansas City’s KCTV reported this week on an attempt to repair a 2012 Missouri state law that has led to a dramatic increase in car thefts. The law, which allows people to sell vehicles 10 years or older without a title, was originally intended to help rural property owners dispose of derelict vehicles and outdated machinery that would otherwise be left to rot. Criminals, however, soon discovered that they could scoop up virtually any vehicle that met the standard and sell it to scrap yards for a tidy profit.

Read more
Classic Review: 1986 Pontiac Fiero GT V6

The Pontiac Fiero is one of those cars that is forever showing up on lists. A simple on-line search finds that it’s one of the 100 worst cars ever built, one of the ten cars that should be avoided by tall people, one of the worst ever Indy 500 Pace Cars and, because of its poor sales, one of the 10 greatest automotive financial disasters of all time. Other lists, however, rate the little two-seater as one of the best sports cars of the 1980s, call it one of the ten unexpectedly best cars for tall people and even rank it as one of the best choices for future collectability. Oddly enough, the Pontiac Fiero also appeared on my own personal list of potential purchases a few months ago and, despite the fact that I ended up choosing one of its contemporaries, when I recently found a wonderful, low-mileage example at KC Classic Autos in near-by Kansas city, I knew I must see it.

Read more
  • ToolGuy "which will be returned as refunds to citizens of the state" - kind of like the Alaska Permanent Fund? Make the amount high enough and I will gladly move to California to take advantage (my family came close to moving there when I was a teen, and oodles of people have moved from CA to my state, so I'm happy to return the favor).Note to California: You probably do not want me as a citizen.
  • ToolGuy Nice torque figure.
  • ToolGuy Pretty cool.
  • ToolGuy While Americans sit around griping about emissions from container ships, check out what the French have been up to: https://www.freightwaves.com/news/largest-lng-powered-container-ship-making-maiden-voyage
  • 28-Cars-Later "I was thinking that service shops were the real cash magnets for the dealers not car sales."You are correct, service and used cars made the majority of dealer profit.