1. Attention: We have put together a thread with tips and a tutorial video to help with using the new software. Please take a moment to check out the thread here: Trapshooters.com Tutorial & Help Video.
    Dismiss Notice

OT…I Just Got a Letter From GM…

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by Gold E, Nov 18, 2008.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Gold E

    Gold E TS Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    Messages:
    481
    “Dear [GoldE],

    You made the right choice when you put your confidence in General Motors, and we appreciate your past support. I want to assure you that we are making our best vehicles ever, and we have exciting plans for the future. But we need your help now. Simply put, we need you to join us to let Congress know that a bridge loan to help U.S. automakers also helps strengthen the U.S. economy and preserve millions of American jobs.

    Despite what you may be hearing, we are not asking Congress for a bailout but rather a loan that will be repaid.

    The U.S. economy is at a crossroads due to the worldwide credit crisis, and all Americans are feeling the effects of the worst economic downturn in 75 years. Despite our successful efforts to restructure, reduce costs and enhance liquidity, U.S. auto sales rely on access to credit, which is all but frozen through traditional channels.

    The consequences of the domestic auto industry collapsing would far exceed the $25 billion loan needed to bridge the current crisis. According to a recent study by the Center for Automotive Research:

    • One in 10 American jobs depends on U.S. automakers
    • Nearly 3 million jobs are at immediate risk
    • U.S. personal income could be reduced by $150 billion
    • The tax revenue lost over 3 years would be more than $156 billion

    Discussions are now underway in Washington, D.C., concerning loans to support U.S. carmakers…”

    [The letter goes on to provide additional info as well as links to sites cited as support]

    My Added Comments:

    I’m afraid that the “bridge loan” would only be a temporary patch in a thread bare tire. Restructuring of the Detroit Three appears inevitable.

    It is unfortunate that the economy in general and gas prices in particular can affect these companies so quickly and severely. I’ve maintained for years that “The Big Three” excel at manufacturing large vehicles (pickups, large SUVs, etc) but I’ve never had much confidence in their small to mid-sized car and car based offerings. They’ve gotten better, but have a long ways to go.
     
  2. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Messages:
    3,707
    GM NEEDS to file bankruptcy and get reorganized into an efficient company. If Congress give it any money it will be throwing it down a rat hole.
     
  3. skeet100

    skeet100 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2007
    Messages:
    410
    After three transmissions in under 40,000 miles on a nice SUV, I really don't think me and GM need to talk.
     
  4. Tron

    Tron Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    6,653
    The big 3 are screwed up from the guy who sweeps the floors right up to top management. They can not compete with their current "business as usual" state of corporate greed/incompetence/arrogance mindset.

    They are STILL making junk, for the most part. I believe it's just too late for them to change. Flame away!
     
  5. birdogs

    birdogs TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,775
    One of the most needed changes in the auto industry is a change in the dealer system. Auto dealers are the successors to the old time horse traders and act accordingly. I have found them universally unethical.

    In what other business can you enter a showroom and ask for a price on a vehicle which is on the showroom floor and not be able to get an straight answer? Rather, you get something like, "Well I need to take your personal information before I can give you a price" and other such bs. Then if you are really serious, you get the, "I have to take it to the Manager" story. The salesman disappears into the Manager's office where they discuss last night's ballgame . When the salesman reappears he has another series of questions but no answers to your questions or offer.

    Severel years ago, I saw a car on a showroom floor and wanggled a price from a novice salesman. When he told me, I said, 'OK, I'll take it". He ran to the Manager and told him what happened. The Manager came to me and apologized for the "new guy". I said there was no need to apologize, just write up the bill of sale and I would write a check and I would pick up the car in a few days when the check cleared.

    This set off all kinds of running around. As absurd as this sounds, I have found this to be standard operating procedure for these folks. If they can't screw you on a lease, financing, extended warrantee or a trade-in, they don't know what to do. They can't simply say it costs $XXX and accept your payment in whatever form you might decide.

    This is one of the major problems with the industry as a whole. The customers are screwed (or screwed around) by the dealers and the manufacturers go along with it. It is the reason that I hate to buy a new car so I wait as long as possible before putting myself through that excrutiating experience yet again. The automakers must find a better way to sell tgheir products or they will be back in the same mess their dealers helped create soon after we bail them out.
     
  6. pendennis

    pendennis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2007
    Messages:
    1,567
    Location:
    Southeast Michigan - O/S Detroit
    GM, Ford, and Chrysler are not just three "dot coms", which mis-forecast the demand for laptops or televisions. They are three mega-sized, and hugely complex businesses. Bankruptcy is not the solution. For instance, if GM went into Chapter 11, they would permanently lose hundreds of thousands of customers.

    Unless you've worked for one of the "Big Three", you have no comprehension of the complexity of these businesses. I worked for Ford for over 38 years in finance (accounting) and information technologies. Our costs of materials, labor, investments, and facilities run into the billions of dollars. Very few people can even comprehend the dollars which flow through these businesses each year.

    The engineering and design of a car is beyond what most people can comprehend. There are literally thousands of parts which have to be individually designed, engineered, manufactured, and delivered at a pace which comes together in an assembly plant turning out sixty, or more, jobs per hour.

    The logistics alone dwarfs every other industry in the country. The amount of effort devoted to getting the right parts, on time, to the line requires complete and total systems not used anywhere else.

    Oh yes. The truck driver on the dedicated just-in-time route will be out of the job, as will be the mechanic at the dealership. Remember the machinist at the tool and die shop? He makes specialty tools to assemble engines or transmissions. He just got laid off.

    The auto industry commands nearly fourteen percent of the jobs in this country, with about seven-to-eight percent directly working for the "Big Three". If these folks were suddenly unemployed, there would be THREE MILLION added to the unemployment rolls. That would be FIFTY times the number added monthly, during this recesssion.

    The ripple effect through the already weakened financial markets would drive the U.S. and world economies into a full depression. And don't think that the Japanese and German transplants would fare any better. Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama, revels in the fact that he has transplants in Alabama which are doing all right. Well, guess what? Some of those transplant parts suppliers also supply Ford, GM, and Chrysler. If those suppliers lose "Big Three" business, the fallout will probably shut those suppliers, because they won't have sufficient volume to stay open and supply the transplants.

    While the numbers have changed somewhat, each assembly plant in the Big Three would be a "Fortune 100" company is they stood alone.

    The problems the automakers have are directly attributable to the idiocy in Congress. Their laws have tampered in markets for which they have no expertise. And now Congress expects GM, Chrysler, and Ford to come crawling on all fours to beg for money. As Oakland County, Michigan, Excecutive Brooks Patterson said so eloquently of Congress, "Those sons of b*****s caused this problem to begin with!"

    Best,
    Dennis
     
  7. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Messages:
    3,707
    United and several other airlines have gone through bankruptcy and have come out better for it. It's not like GM is going to shut its doors. But, if it takes taxpayer dollars to keep GM afloat, I say screw it. Why should I as a taxpayer have to pay so someone else can be a new POS Chevy?
     
  8. shannon391

    shannon391 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    4,477
    No American pride left, That's where we are really screwed.
     
  9. Tron

    Tron Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    6,653
    Not just pride, but accountability is NONexistant!
     
  10. pendennis

    pendennis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2007
    Messages:
    1,567
    Location:
    Southeast Michigan - O/S Detroit
    A new Ford has quality equal to, or better than the average Honda or Toyota. Vehicle are measured in "things gone wrong/hundred". Newer Fords surpass Toyota, and are very close to Honda.

    Birdogs - It would be nice to be able to sell to dealers who are the best, but dealers are also protected by various state franchise laws. There have been many times when the companies attempted to remove a dealer, but states have stepped in and prevented it.

    A few years ago, Ford tried to create a company-owned network in Indiana. We ended up closing them because of pressure from the dealer orgainization there. It was an attempt to improve the image of the dealer.

    Best,
    Dennis
     
  11. Hauser

    Hauser Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    860
    Dennis


    UAW workers make $70+/hour including their benefits and pension.


    No company is going to survive making cars paying those wages.


    Jerry Hauser
     
  12. 391 shooter

    391 shooter Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2008
    Messages:
    2,094
    Complexity? I work in manufacturing and understand what you can and can not do. I don't care how big you are, bad management is bad management and the big 3 put themselves in this position.

    Let the GOVERNMENT bailout and be partners in a competitive manufacturing environment based on ROI and PROFIT. It will not work.

    Point: When your outgo is more than your income you fix it or go Bankrupt, period.


    Then someone, if you have a good product, will come in and take over for 10 to 20 cent on the dollar and make it work because you screwed yourself into a hole of no return, as GM Ford and Chrysler have. Letting people retire at 50 to 55 with huge packages paid for by others will not work.

    I worked for a large fortune 500 corp for almost 20 years, they finally hired enough died in the wool Harvard MBA's to kill the buisness from within. They lost all symbalance of passion for the buisness, then farmed off our division to another manufacture of a comparible product.

    Let the big three go under, there will be smart buisness people ready immediately, if we can keep the Feds out of it, to take over and be "PROFITABLE". " PROFIT" It's not a bad word.

    4 Billion or 4 Thousand when your bankrupt your bankrupt.
     
  13. recurvyarcher

    recurvyarcher Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2006
    Messages:
    6,450
    Both of my Fords, a 2001 Sport Track and a 2000 Explorer 8 cyl, have been extremely reliable. I have over 100K on the first, and 200K on the second (which tows my horse trailer and camper). At times I have been lax with the maintenance schedule, and still these vehicles get me everywhere I need to go with no trouble. Ford definitely makes good-quality vehicles.
     
  14. 22hornet

    22hornet Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    1,461
    Location:
    Hanford, CA
    My GMC pickup has 100000 miles. No problems. None. My 1995 Mazda badged Ford Ranger has 260,000 miles. 1 clutch and transmission. My wife's fault. No other problems. Regular service intervals.

    I carpool with a guy who has had 2 Toyotas. Granted, both high milage cars, like mine, but...the air conditioner doesn't work in either Toyota. Neither do the power windows. They run great, but so do my American vehicles. I'd say quality wise, they are about equal. Besides; when I jump on the throttle with that V-8 Jimmy, it just seems right. I'm buying another in the spring, if GM is still around.
     
  15. Bisi

    Bisi TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    3,399
    I don't think it is quality that is the problem. I'm more than happy with the Ford products I've owned. Never had to replace a transmission or a motor or anything major. The problem is the legacy costs - paying too many people who haven't stepped into a factory in years, health care, etc...

    When you have an auto worker in Michigan working at GM making twice as much as an auto worker in Indiana, or Texas, who works at Toyota, well you do the math.

    There is a lesson here. Our government is in the same boat: state, federal, and local. They have TRILLIONS in unfunded pensions, and promises. Wonder how long it will be before the US is bankrupt?
     
  16. cbxchris

    cbxchris Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    Messages:
    771
    I told my wife this morning as we heard and read about this big 3 bailout that if it goes through I will never buy another big 3 car. Currently I have 5 of them.

    My last new car was a first for me. A Toyota. Never been back to the dealer and I may never buy another big 3 car regardless of what they do...
     
  17. fortwtlkqa

    fortwtlkqa Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2008
    Messages:
    60
    Dennis,

    I hate to tell you, but your information is wrong. Ford is nowhere near Toyota/Honda is JD Power & Associates problems per 100. Honda & Toyota were rated 5th & 6th. Ford was actually rated at 19th at the end of 2007. 2008 results aren't out yet, but we both know Ford won't stack up. I drove a brand new Ford Edge withh 33 miles on it and the transmission fell out.

    Keep in mind, Toyota keeps building plants in the US and hiring guys like us to build the "jap" cars. However with the "jap" cars, 95% of the parts/labor or more are made in the US.

    Screw the big 3. I'll keep buying my toyota's and honda's that get me 300k with no problems. I've got a 97 Ford F150 with 55k that I've had to put a tranny and new heads on. If it hadn't cost me 5k I'd never own a piece of junk ford/chevy/chrysler. An I've got an 2005 Camry with 100k on it that hasn't cost me a penny. Go figure.....Support american workers, buy Toyota's & Honda's, they'll be the only ones left.

    Curt
     
  18. TOOLMAKER 251

    TOOLMAKER 251 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    3,398
    Jerry Hauser, that all depends on how many man hours are in putting that car on the market. Most of the parts that go into the autos are made by outside companies. The Ford dealer is charging you $90 an hour to fix your car, thats more then $70 per hour for the UAW worker. The big 3 were building exactly what the american public wanted, (suv,trucks, vans) until the oil investers decided to start ripping off the world with $147 a barrel oil. Then everybody was dumping their detroit autos and looking for imports. You can put alot of blame on the people who made oil go to $147 and saying it would surpass $200.
     
  19. laura!

    laura! Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2007
    Messages:
    438
    Birdogs, I couldn't agree more. I hate buying cars and it's all due to the dealer BS.

    Tron, No flaming here. I don't owe a dime on anything cause we bought within our means. It burns me up that my tax dollars are going to the fiscally irresponsible.
     
  20. Hauser

    Hauser Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    860
    TOOLMAKER 251


    The numbers aren't mine.


    According to Forbes:

    Labor cost per hour, wages and benefits for hourly workers, 2006.

    Ford: $70.51 ($141,020 per year)

    GM: $73.26 ($146,520 per year)

    Chrysler: $75.86 ($151,720 per year)

    Toyota, Honda, Nissan (in U.S.): $48.00 ($96,000 per year)


    Im sorry for anyone in this industry but it's been driven into a ditch.


    Jerry Hauser
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.