By on August 26, 2020

gm

Owners of the newly mid-engined Chevrolet Corvette might notice a new message greeting them this week, now that a solution to a recent recall concerning the 2020 C8 ‘Vette’s “frunk” appears to be underway.

C8 owners have complained of their front-end trunk’s (frunk’s) lid opening while on the road, leading to a dangerous situation as they attempt to pull over to close it. Just like a hood flying up on the highway, no one wants their frunk doing the same. TTAC’s Chris Tonn, currently ensconced in a bright yellow example, received the prescribed remedy last night. (Read More…)

By on August 19, 2020

GM

Sales of General Motors vehicles sank 15 percent in 2019 —  the automaker’s second straight year of annual sales pullback in that once promising market.

Maybe the product was the problem?

That seems to be GM’s thinking. On Wednesday, The General revealed its plan to capture market share in the world’s mos populous auto market with a raft of electric vehicles underpinned by its new modular electric vehicle platform, all powered by the company’s low-cobalt Ultium battery technology. (Read More…)

By on August 18, 2020

Image: Steph Willems/TTAC

The all-new 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 arrived with many new items in tow, but one of the most notable was the brand’s MultiPro tailgate —  a hinge-heavy piece of hardware capable of assisting box entry, acting as a workshop, serving up drinks, or blasting tunes.

For an automaker that criticized Ford so-called “Man Step,” MultiPro was akin to one of those staircase escalators for geriatric homeowners. Still, it possessed strong marketing potential, and it might soon appear on bowtie-badged trucks. (Read More…)

By on August 18, 2020

There’s still quite a bit of bad blood between General Motors and the now-defunct Holden brand’s Australian dealers, with the retailers seeking compensation for the automaker’s February pull-out.

As that saga plays out, GM announced that it will remain in the Aussie market, offering right-hand-drive specialty models grouped under the new GMSV brand. The brand officially rolls out in the fourth quarter of this year, with a former partner once again handling the conversions of select models for a country that drives on the wrong side of the road. (Read More…)

By on August 14, 2020

General Motors’ attempt to revive its RICO lawsuit has failed after a federal court claimed the new evidence presented was too speculative to start the legal process back up. U.S. District Judge Paul Borman dismissed the case with prejudice in July, calling it a “waste of time,” but GM returned with new evidence it hoped might turn the tables.

Filed in November, the General’s case against FCA claims its rival finagled a labor advantage by bribing UAW officials during key contract negotiations. With a federal corruption case still probing the union, and with Fiat Chrysler’s known involvement, it seems like GM might have had a case here. But Judge Borman didn’t think there was sufficient evidence before, and hasn’t changed his mind since.

(Read More…)

By on August 14, 2020

2020 Chevrolet Silverado logo badge

General Motors has conquest on the mind. As the Labor Day long weekend and all of its associated new car deals looms, the automaker wants to woo owners of Fiat Chrysler products (or their family members) into top-selling Chevrolet and GMC models.

It’s not a huge incentive, but it does call attention to the General’s renewed rivalry with Ram. Chevrolet in particular wants to widen the pickup sales lead it only just recaptured from its resurgent rival. (Read More…)

By on August 13, 2020

General Motors said it plans to share some of the safety technology it developed as a countermeasure to the coronavirus pandemic this week. These include a thermal scanning kiosk that uses infrared imaging to take temperatures of people as they stream into facilities, as well as a touchless printer app designed to keep staff from repeatedly touching the control panel. However, it’s the third item, GM’s contact-tracing software, that’s the most novel and controversial.

Practically every company in the world is working on ways to better track people, and their efforts have only accelerated during the pandemic. The presumption here is that by knowing every person someone has come into contact with, you can effectively track the progress of a virus. Despite sounding terrifyingly dystopian just a few years earlier, the notion has become a favorite among tech giants  most of whom are working on their own version.

GM’s involves a wristband, integrated into iOS and Android devices, that keeps tabs on how close employees are to each other. The company has since added support for Bluetooth beacons.

“We believe our application advances the state of the art when it comes to mobile apps for contact tracing, which is the subject of massive software development efforts across multiple industries today,” Tony Bolton, GM’s chief information officer of Global Telecommunications and End-User Services, said in a release. (Read More…)

By on August 13, 2020

2019 Chevrolet Blazer front quarter

The mild content changes coming to Chevrolet’s midsize Blazer for 2021 were the talk of the town last month, though it’s entirely possible people were talking about Blazer for a very different reason

Regardless, one of the changes not talked about by either the public or General Motors is something first aired by the EPA. (Read More…)

By on August 12, 2020

Unifor will take on the Detroit automakers this week, with the Canadian union undoubtedly planning to do everything within its power to keep as many jobs as it can manage. Unfortunately, that might be easier said than done, what with vehicle demand suppressed by months of lockdowns and an associated economic recession. Despite the positivity surrounding Wall Street, regular folks aren’t in the mood to buy lately.

No matter. Union negotiations are always famously contentious anyway. Corporations want rock-bottom prices for top-shelf work and labor associations always have to ask for more to rationalize their existence. Unifor President Jerry Dias noted that he’s ready for whatever the Big Three throw at him, though we doubt it will include totally sweet offers for line workers. The best the union can probably hope for in 2020 is not losing more Canadian jobs than absolutely necessary. (Read More…)

By on August 11, 2020

Dhivya Suryadevara, General Motors’ chief financial officer, is on the way out. After helping the automaker weather its worst storm since the 2008 recession and concurrent bankruptcy, Suryadevara announced her resignation Tuesday, effective August 15th. She’s leaving for a non-automotive position at Stripe, a San Francisco-based financial services and software company.

GM’s first female finance boss, Suryadevara took on the role in 2018, but the pandemic that rocked the auto industry this year also created new opportunities elsewhere. (Read More…)

By on August 11, 2020

General Motors desperately wants to reopen a case dismissed last month by a federal judge, but Fiat Chrysler’s having none of it.

The racketeering lawsuit filed by GM against its crosstown rival alleged that FCA secured unfair labor advantages over GM via bribed UAW officials, with the automaker claiming last week that it possesses new evidence capable of convicting its automotive foe. A number of offshore bank accounts fueled the bribery effort, GM claims, with the automaker’s court filing accusing former UAW Vice President (and ex-GM board member) Joe Ashton of being a paid mole.

Gripping stuff, but FCA says it’s seen this movie before — and it’s a stinker. (Read More…)

By on August 10, 2020

gm

The Buick Encore GX, a larger, unrelated Encore with fewer cylinders than you’re used to, quietly appeared in the brand’s stable just as “pandemic” became every newscast’s favorite word. Like its Chevrolet Trailblazer fraternal twin, the Encore GX boasts a more spacious body than its subcompact stablemate and a brace of three-pot engines designer for power and thrift.

While the little Encore has been Buick’s sales leader for years, the brand says that’s already changed. Still, there are no immediate plans to ditch the GX’s smaller namesake. (Read More…)

By on August 7, 2020

One of the strangest anomalies in the automotive industry is the way electric vehicle startups (like technology companies in general) seem to draw limitless support from investors while established automakers don’t receive nearly the same kind of love  even when transitioning toward EVs.

There’s a logic behind this, however. Green tech is overwhelmingly trendy at the moment, even if some of it lacks a comprehensive game plan to actually save the environment, and financial backers are always looking to get in on the next big thing before anybody else  resulting in scattershot investing that sometimes coalesces into a major victory for new firms possessing sufficient moxie.

But it hasn’t helped the auto industry’s largest players, who are seen as dinosaurs using the blood of their forebears to amass their fortunes. They lack the presumed purity of brands like Tesla or Nikola (clever name), even though their financial goals seem largely the same.

A potential solution to this problem is to distance tech-focused entities from the core business. (Read More…)

By on August 7, 2020

FCA Brampton Assembly Line Challenger & 300 - Image: FCA

Canadian auto manufacturing has steadily declined over the past several decades, and the future looks cloudy for workers at Detroit Three plants. It’s under this gathering gloom that the union representing these workers, Unifor, enters into contract negotiations with General Motors, Ford, and Fiat Chrysler.

The last round of collective bargaining was rough, but the near-closure of GM’s Oshawa Assembly (where auto production ceased last year) provided Unifor with a grim portent of what could await other underutilized Canuck plants. (Read More…)

By on August 4, 2020

Last November, General Motors filed a racketeering suit against Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, claiming its rival was involved in a prolonged bribery scheme with UAW leaders to gain an unfair labor-cost advantage. Despite FCA already having staff participating in a vast union corruption scandal, U.S. District Judge Paul Borman dismissed the GM case in July after claiming there was nothing to it beyond petty corporate squabbling.

Now GM is back, claiming it has new evidence against FCA that’s going to blow the lid off everything.

On Monday, the General asked the court to reinstate the racketeering lawsuit. It now claims that there’s evidence of foreign bank accounts used in the alleged bribery scandal. We say “alleged” despite the FBI’s continued investigation into the UAW (separate from the GM-FCA suit) showing criminal levels of corruption. The company even suggested that Alphons Iacobelli (who is already serving time for bribing union officials) channeled sensitive information back to FCA after being hired by GM. The claimed plot then has Fiat Chrysler paying the Iacobelli  family millions of dollars via overseas accounts.

“These new facts warrant amending the court’s prior judgment, so we are respectfully asking the court to reinstate the case,” GM said.

(Read More…)

Recent Comments

  • Matt Posky: I have a feeling you may be predicting the future.
  • sgeffe: Agreed. Somewhere there’s leaked pics of the dash rendering. It’s almost identical to the current Accord.
  • Superdessucke: Just in case you think I was snippy in my earlier comment, I do think Biden will win the election, and...
  • Tim Healey: This is my point…he had a cogent argument to make. He’s had it all along. But neither he nor...
  • Russycle: Very nice, love the swoopy dash. Not a fan of the continental kit.

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