GM Finally Sees Writing On the Wall…

G.M. Shifts Focus to Small Cars in Sign of Sport Utility Demise

That’s right, friends, General Motors, the champion of the SUV and owner of the Hummer, is now closing down some SUV factories and working to produce smaller cars!

Thing is, seems every time GM (or ANY USA domestic producer) tries to produce smaller cars they trip over themselves, make big mistakes and end up falling further behind in things. They haven’t been able to make a good small car since 1965 (with the exception of Dodge’s Omni GLH) and now have to IMPORT their subcompacts.

< end snarky commentary >

Looking over the article reveals some interesting bits of information:

  1. The graph shows that SUVs have lost market share, while small cars have gained. Crossovers and Trucks have also lost a bit, but not nearly as much as the SUVs have.
  2. Looks like the Volt will still be a go.
  3. GM will be making yet another half million fewer cars this year. It would appear that they’ve DEFINITELY given up on being #1, at least for the next few years.
  4. Hummers have shrunk mightily since 2006. From 71,000 vehicles in the 2006 model year to 14,000 this model year (so far)

The sad thing about this is that I still fear that the USA automobile companies may end up disappearing or changing over to a foreign company. Fact is, the American Automobile Industry has been at its best when it’s built supersized vehicles. 1959, 1972 and 2004 were high-water points for the American Automobile Industry, also the times when big, gaudy cars/SUVs were at their zenith. Small cars were always their weakness, and now that fewer people want the big cars the American Automobile makers are at a severe disadvantage.

Here’s to hoping they actually get things right. However, I wouldn’t bet on it. Don’t be surprised if Toyota comes in a year early and better range with their Volt-esque car (God knows they’re going heavily into hybrids). 


2 thoughts on “GM Finally Sees Writing On the Wall…

  1. I think the future is in fuel cell technology.

    Honda is currently testing the Clarity in California.

    Per usual, the Big Three are three laps behind.

    It makes no sense.

  2. Sadly, it makes perfect sense. Even if Hydrogen doesn’t (which I believe).

    The problem is that the three car producing areas have specialized into different areas:

    Asia: Fuel Efficiency and quality.
    Europe: Sporty models with pep.
    US: Big, spacious cars/trucks.

    Fuel Efficiency can be done with pep, within reason. Sporty models can be fuel efficient.
    As long as you keep the cars small.
    Big cars, by definition, drain gas and go slow It’s much harder to make large cars fuel efficient beyond a certain amount of power needed to move the boats, and power drains fuel faster on big cars than small cars.

    This trap was set when, in response to an American Motors executive taking credit for GM making a small car, the GM executive replied “Minicars….Miniprofits.” Events since then have not so much proven that GM executive right as proven GM (and, to an extent, Ford and Chysler) unable to correct that statement.

    As I’ve said before, I don’t think GM or Ford will get their bailout. Chrysler might, and that’s because they’re owned by the rich (not by generic stockholders).

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