Don't see too many Honda AN600s, Toyota Crowns or 1200s, Datsun 510s or
B210s either. Damn few VW Beetles still running for that matter, too,
but I still see Dodge Darts, Plymouth Valiants, and the occasional
Chevy 2/Nova or Ford Falcon on the road.
There is always an easy solution to every human problem -- neat,
plausible, and wrong." (H L Mencken)
Simca. Forgot about that one. We had a Simca (don't remember year)
for a year or two. It was fun to drive and hell to work on because
parts were hard to find. Constantly rebuilding the clutch hydraulics
but aftermarket kits were available. Then came the day when I had to
replace a starter. Remove, bumper, bumper pan, radiator, and assorted
stuff. That was where the fun was overshadowed by desire to try
another toy car.
The first Mustangs were just Ford Falcons with a sporty body. Until
Carroll Shelby tore one apart and rebuilt it with a decent suspension,
there was not much sporty about them.
Guys who had real sports cars laughed at all of the American "sports
cars", including Corvettes.
They might have been good between stop lights but if you got one on a
winding road, an old MG with a good driver would leave you, spun out
in the dirt.
Only detriment The UAW had was making the cars cost more than
You might argue the bean counters cut quality to accommodate the union
costs, but that was their call.
Union didn't design the cars or oversee quality control.
That's all management.
Same with model changes.
Best car I ever had was an '88 Celebrity 2.8.
Almost flawless for 190K miles, when it rusted out.
GM dropped it a year later.
Same with the '97 Lumina I'm driving now.
Corolla, Civic, Campy, Accord.
How old are those names?
What does GM have to compare?
Toyota/Honda made decent models, grew a brand recognition, and
protected the brand with quality.
The GM mentality kind a reminds me that exec who came out with "new"
Like that's a small thing? The UAW workers were getting about 2x
what workers at non-union auto manufacturers earned in wages
I wouldn't be so sure about the quality control part. If you
have inflexible union rules, I can see it affecting quality. I
have two guys doing X. I want to reassign one of them
so he does both A and B, which would improve quality
Union rules say no way.
Camaro, Corvette, Impala, Malibu, Regal come to mind
On Wed, 1 Jun 2011 13:09:22 -0700 (PDT), " firstname.lastname@example.org"
Impala is full size and the name was dropped for some years.
Malibu is another name without continuous service.
Camaro and Vette aren't "family" cars. Niche.
Regal is high-end.
Corolla, Civic, Camry, Accord have been the bread and butter of
Toyota/Honda for more than 25 years.
Family midsize and compact.
GM has nothing to compare in sales figures and model longevity.
Until the "new" Malibu the GM counterparts were the Chevrolet
Cavalier/Corsica, Celebrity/Lumina and their Pontiac/Buick/Olds
The 1986 Celebrity was the best selling car in the U.S that year.
It was improved until 1989, then dropped.
Replaced with the Lumina, early ones with problematic rear disk
brakes, and all with dicey intake manifolds gaskets on the 3.1.
I just replaced the intake manifold gasket with the improved gasket on
my '97 as a precaution.
The Lumina is a good car besides the known gasket issue.
But 2001 was its last year.
The Malibu is upsized to fill the hole. The Malibu name was brought
back from the dead in '97.
In the meantime the Cobalt came and went and now there's the Cruze.
Corolla, Civic, Camry, Accord brings back buyers to Toyota/Honda.
Old names that speak "quality."
You can blame GM's failure to do the same on the unions if you want.
Easy target, but I don't let management slide a bit.
Looks like GM is coming back.
Hard to project future sales, but the Malibu stays strong and the
Cruze appears to be doing well in its initiation.
Here's one version of 2010 sales.
#1 Toyota Camry 327,804 356,824
#2 Honda Accord 311,381 290,056
#3 Toyota Corolla/Matrix 266,082 296,874
#4 Honda Civic 260,218 259,722
#5 Nissan Altima 229,263 203,568
#6 Ford Fusion 219,219 180,671
#7 Chevrolet Malibu 198,770 161,568
#8 Hyundai Sonata 196,623 120,028
#9 Ford Focus 172,421 160,433
#10 Chevrolet Impala 172,078 165,565
See the top four? That's what I mean when I say GM has nothing to
compare. That might change, and it might not.
First time I saw the current (soon to be replaced) Malibu, I immediately
was reminded of my trusty 99 Accord. Same profile and look, about the
same size, etc. I wonder if one of the GM designers owned one? (IMHO,
the 98-02 Accord was the last decent looking one- the next gen model
looked like it had a fat ass, and adopted the then-trendy high beltline
look. To my eye, the current gen just looks bizarre.)
I agree. I liked the lines of my 1990 Prelude but later versions took on
that high-butt design that probably held more cargo but looked chopped off
like a badly docked dog's tail.
The PT Cruiser showed that there's a market for retro and/or eye catching
designs. Jaguar could probably bring back the XK-E and built it so that it
not only looked good, but actually ran reliably.
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