Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sad to Say He's Sorry?

My most recent post about the automobile industry was on Valentine's Day Eve, when I disagreed with the assessment of the L.A. Times that the Saturn Sky/Pontiac Solstice was an exception to the bad designs coming out of Detroit. The Times called that two-company model a hit and I called it a miss. Now, according to the ChattaBox website: "GM has announced that they will be shutting down Saturn dealerships, and that no other Saturn(s) will be manufactured after 2011. They are also planning to begin phasing out the Pontiac (brand)."

This is sad news, which I don't really think is simply an outgrowth of poor design; more of poor manufacturing and bad decisions that came from CEO Rick Wagoner on down. The poor manufacturing issue may actually go back decades with Pontiac. Think about the '60s-era classic Mustangs, Camaros and Firebirds. I don't know about you, but I still see a lot of the original Mustangs on the road, along with a few of the Camaros. The Firebirds - nope.

So more American jobs will be lost, at both the manufacturing and retail end. Will Rick Wagoner ever be sad enough to say he's sorry?

Note: The photograph, above, is of the Pontiac Solstice coupe, an allegedly better looking version of this car; and one that I have never seen on the roads/streets of the U.S.

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