Archives: October 2008

Detroit: To bail, or not to bail.

Posted by: David Welch on October 31

Without some kind of help from the government, General Motors may not be able to acquire Chrysler from its owner, Cerberus Capital Management. In fact, GM probably needs government...

GM falls further behind Toyota. Who cares?

Posted by: David Welch on October 29

Here’s an irrelevant bit of news. Global sales at General Motors fell 11% in the third quarter to 2.1 million vehicles, knocking it further behind Toyota. The Japanese juggernaut beat...

GM's LaNeve Voices GM Ads

Posted by: David Kiley on October 28

First there was Lee Iacocca appearing in Chrysler ads in the 1980s. Then we had Ford chairman Bill Ford starring in print and TV ads a few years ago, hawking...

The sports car in your future

Posted by: David Welch on October 24

I have driven the future and it’s here right now. Granted, oil prices are falling like a Hummer driven over a cliff, but consumers are still going to be...

NASCAR's real challenge

Posted by: David Welch on October 24

Detroit’s dark days cast a long shadow. And NASCAR is starting to shiver in that shade. An Oct. 23 story in the Washington Post revealed that the Big Three...

GM Seems To Have Chosen Battery Supplier For Volt

Posted by: David Kiley on October 23

Reuters is reporting that General Motors has made its selection of battery supplier for its extended range electric car--Chevy Volt--due to hit the market in late 2010. Reuters says the...

The big winner in a GM-Chrysler merger

Posted by: David Welch on October 21

Who’s the real winner if a General Motors-Chrysler merger goes down? Well, it won’t be the United Auto Workers, who stand to lose jobs when GM combines product lines...

Kerkorian Selling Ford: A Sign That Time Is Not On Detroit's Side

Posted by: David Kiley on October 21

Kirk Kerkorian’s sudden divestiture of Ford shares is an indication of just how long it may take for Ford and Detroit’s other two automakers to come back to a...

Worst Cab Ever: Chevy Malibu

Posted by: David Kiley on October 20

I was in Las vegas recently, and was riding to the airport in a Toyota Prius cab. When I was in Vegas a few months ago, I rode in a...

The Case Against a GM-Chrysler Merger

Posted by: David Kiley on October 16

General Motors executives and some Chrysler executives seem to want the two companies to merge. Though they are publicly mumm, privately reporters have gotten earfuls from the promoters boosting...

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Posted by: David Welch on October 16

Have you ever seen the Sergio Leone classic, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly? At the movie’s end, The Good, played by Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef’s Bad...

Next Prius: Hybrid Dominance Continues

Posted by: David Kiley on October 16

Don't expect too much revolution in the next Toyota Prius, due at the Detroit Auto Show in January. From the looks of the exterior, it is very evolutionary. New...

Toyota iQ: a recession proof car?

Posted by: Ian Rowley on October 16

Tough times these might be but Toyota wasted no expense on the launch of its new "micro-premium" car, the iQ in Chiba, outside Tokyo, on Wednesday. Including Toyota employees,...

Depression Coming: Ford Truck Buyers Live In Their Trucks.

Posted by: David Kiley on October 13

Today at Ford's Rouge truck plant where the automaker has begun building an all-new redesigned pickup truck, company president Mark Fields said..."Our owners live in their trucks." Of course, he...

Day Traders Best Friends: Ford and GM?

Posted by: David Kiley on October 13

Day traders must be having fun with General Motors and Ford. Last Friday I was talking to an auto industry source who is very close to management at both Ford...

Ford Looking To Sell Mazda Stake--Take Two

Posted by: David Kiley on October 11

Facing falling sales and a drain on its remaining liquid assets, Ford Motor Co. is looking to sell all or a piece of its stake in Mazda Motor Co. Reports...

Ford to Sell Mazda?

Posted by: Ian Rowley on October 11

Back in August, I wrote a piece asking if Ford's woes would mean that it might have to sell off its stake in Mazda. According to reports today in Japan,...

Could Uncle Sam Save Detroit?

Posted by: David Welch on October 10

With stocks in both General Motors and Ford sinking to historic lows, it’s clear that Wall Street thinks bankruptcy is a serious possibility. While no one is calling Wall...

GM and Ford Burning Furniture To Keep Warm

Posted by: David Kiley on October 09

Ford, General Motors and Chrysler are pretty much burning the furniture to stay warm. And that’s now. Never mind that the economic upturn these companies have been banking on happening...

J.D. Power: Retail Sales To Be 2 Million Lower in 2008.

Posted by: David Kiley on October 08

Las Vegas--Research firm J.D. Power and Associates [a unit of BusinessWeek parent McGraw-Hill] has revised its forecast for 2008 retail sales downward to 10.8 million units. That number removes fleet...

Toyota's stock slumps but investment continues

Posted by: Ian Rowley on October 08

In a shocking day for Japanese stocks--the benchmark Nikkei index had its third worst session in history, falling 9.4%--Toyota's recent stock slump accelerated. By the close of trading at 3pm,...

Debtor Nation Falls Behind

Posted by: David Welch on October 07

Want another reason car buyers aren’t racing to dealerships? Many buyers are having trouble paying the balance on the loans they already have. More and more borrowers are falling...

UAW hits the campaign trail. Will it matter?

Posted by: David Welch on October 07

Here’s one of those preach-to-the-choir moves that won’t amount to much. The United Auto Workers union plans to launch a multi-state ad campaign hitting television, radio and the Internet...

Auto News: 40% in Poll Say Auto Sales Will Be Below 12 million in 2009

Posted by: David Kiley on October 06

An online survey of readers at www.autonews.com showed Monday afternoon that 40% predict that the auto industry will sell fewer than 12 million units next year. Most site visitors are...

Ford's MyKey System Puts Invisible Road Nanny With Teen Drivers

Posted by: David Kiley on October 06

Ford is clearly trying to appeal to today’s car buyers, not tomorrow’s, by rolling out a feature ion 2010 models that can limit teen drivers to 80 mph, using a...

Mitsubishi Motors' electric dreams

Posted by: Ian Rowley on October 06

If Mitsubishi Motors chief Osamu Masuko is unduly concerned about slumping auto sales in the U.S., Japan, and Europe he wasn't showing it at a media lunch in Tokyo today....

Paris Auto Show: Chevy Orlando For Eur Eyes Only

Posted by: David Kiley on October 03

Not so long ago, GM teased us with the prospect of building the Chevy Orlando in the U.S., and even selling the mini minivan here. Pffft. GM execs say...

Toyota Turns To Zero-Precent

Posted by: David Kiley on October 03

Some will call it the canary in the coal mine for the auto industry--when Toyota resorts to zero-percent financing. Actually, it seems more like a case of matching the right...

Paris Auto Show: New Lambo Estoque

Posted by: David Kiley on October 02

By Jack Ewing: Neither the financial crisis nor high fuel prices seems to be discouraging luxury carmakers from inventing new toys for the very wealthy. BMW has just launched...

McCain Conceding Michigan

Posted by: David Kiley on October 02

GOP Presidential candidate John McCain has pretty much conceded Michigan to Democrat Barack Obama, reports www.politico.com. The candidate, who beat George Bush in the 2000 GOP primary in Michigan, is...

Even Toyota gets the blues, part III

Posted by: David Welch on October 01

What a strange month September was. The Yankees didn’t make the playoffs. The Tampa Bay Rays did. And Toyota’s sales fell 32%. Sure, it’s tough all over, but Toyota...

Detroit wants its loan money, fast

Posted by: David Welch on October 01

Detroit may have approval for its funds, but as David Kiley points out, it could be a while before the struggling car companies can actually get any cash in...

Want quiet time? Find a new-car showroom.

Posted by: David Welch on October 01

Want a quiet place to do some reading? How about a nearby car dealership? Ford’s sales fell 35% this months and GM discounted its way to a less catastrophic...

Bush Approves Automaker Loan Program: But Will It Arrive in Time?

Posted by: David Kiley on October 01

President Bush on Sept. 30 signed a broad spending bill that keeps government operating in the new fiscal year, and includes $7.5 billion to pay for a $25 billion loan...

Lexus ecodesignlifestyle: A Headache in my eye.

Posted by: David Kiley on October 01

Ummmmmmm. I have come across some truly irrelevant press releases from auto companies in my long career. Releases that made me say...huh? I am trying to get my head...

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Want the straight scoop on the auto industry? Our man in Detroit David Welch, brings keen observations and provocative perspective on the auto business.

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