• Sign in to follow this  
    Followers 0

    GM Readies A Plan To Compensate Crossover Owners


    • General Motors goes into damage control after revealing they had overstated fuel economy figures on their large crossovers

    Last week, General Motors issued a stop sale on the 2016 Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, and GMC Acadia due to the window stickers having overstated fuel economy numbers by one to two mpg. All-wheel drive models had an incorrect label showing ratings of 17 City/24 Highway/19 Combined. The correct label has ratings of 15 City/22 Highway/17 Combined.

     

    But what about the folks who bought one of GM's large crossovers with the incorrect ratings? How did this happen in the first place? We have answers.

     

    In a statement to Automotive News, GM explained the 2016 models were equipped with new “emissions-related hardware,” which meant new tests needed to be done.

     

    “The fuel economy data from these tests were not captured in calculations made for EPA fuel economy labels ... causing 2016 model year fuel economy numbers to be overstated,” said GM.

     

    The error was found when engineers were working on the labels for the 2017 models. This issue was immediately reported to EPA. At the moment, GM is working with the EPA on this issue.

     

    As for what will happen to the nearly 170,000 owners of affected crossovers, GM is working on a compensation plan. Sources tell Reuters that GM is working out a program to compensate owners for the difference in fuel economy figures. Out of the 170,000 owners, more than 130,000 will qualify for the program (the remainder of vehicles belong to fleets). The plan will be announced in the coming week.

     

    Not surprisingly, an owner of one of the affected models has filed a class-action lawsuit against GM, alleging that the company concealed the actual fuel economy figures.

     

    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Reuters
    Pic Credit: William Maley for Cheers & Gears

    0


    Sign in to follow this  
    Followers 0


    User Feedback


    Good for GM to jump on this when discovered. The IDIOT who filed the class-action lawsuit is just looking at money. The judges need to throw this out.

     

    I applaud GM for being proactive and for clearly letting the engineers bring the issue to light of day.

     

    I take this as a basic mistake that happens and not Like Mitsubishi who deceived for decades.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I understand WHY they would go the class action route but as long as GM knows and is working on a plan I don't understand that. Now... May GM have decided to start throwing a compensation plan after this individual decided to sue or did they decide to sue after GM announced they were working on a compensation plan?

    Regardless, I'm glad GM is taking care of their customers like they should be.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Class action is BS. 

    All Class Action does is make lawyers rich for their claimed legal fees and leave those foolish enough to think they are going to get anything with a future discount on a GM car or a free Oil change at best. 

     

    In the end we all end up paying for the results in higher car prices. 

     

    There are no free rides in life. You can be given something free but at some point a company or the government is going to take from you to pay for it.  

    2

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    +1 Hyper Nailed that on the head. :D

    Need to nail some lawyers over the head with tort reform that is fair to both sides and end corporate blackmail. 

     

    I see it everywhere and even at work where it is cheaper to settle a lawsuit than to fight it to win. You lose in cost even with a good case and so many lawyers take it just to win a settlement. 

     

    In class actions they take millions in fees to represent people with no clue and then reward the brainless with a free  air freshener or discount on a cruise they will never take anyways. 

    2

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Agree with you guys....sad part GM could have said nothing and saved money.

     

    As you see, it pays to be honest.....

     

    Give em a gas card and I'm sure they will be happy....

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    A lot of large corporations are pursuing the idea that courts are to be replaced with mandatory arbitration, especially in the technology sector.  Since you seem to believe that tort reform is the answer to this and other issues, are you willing to push for mandatory arbitration?

     

    Just remember that mandatory arbitration is completely biased in favor to those who pay the arbitrator, and very seldom said arbitrator is pro-plaintiff.

    1

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites


    Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

    Guest
    You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
    Add a comment...

    ×   You have pasted content with formatting.   Remove formatting

      Only 75 emoticons maximum are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor




  • Popular Stories

  • Similar Content

    • By William Maley
      To say the Buick Enclave was well past its sell-by-date would be an understatement. But to be fair, the Enclave was one of Buick's best-sellers. The 2018 Enclave that debuted tonight in New York has some big shoes to fill.
      The basic shape of the 2018 Enclave is the same as the outgoing model. What has changed are the front and rear ends. Buick's designers took the front off the Avista concept and put it onto the Enclave. The distinct grille with the Buick emblem floating and slim headlights are here. Around back is a restyled tailgate with a large chrome bar and narrow taillights.
      Buick borrowed the dash from LaCrosse for the Enclave's interior with flowing curves, high-quality materials, and an 8-inch screen featuring the latest version of the Intelllink infotainment system. In terms of seating, Enclave can seat up to seven people. Buick says overall space has increased by 10 percent and with the 3rd-row up, offers up 23.6 cubic feet of space.
      Power still comes from a 3.6L V6 offering up 302 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. A nine-speed automatic and the choice of either front-wheel or all-wheel drive.
      Buick also used this event to launch the Avenir subbrand with the Enclave being the first model. Avenir models feature special badging, 20-inch wheels, LED headlights, contrast stitching and piping on the seats, dual moonroofs, navigation, and the rearview mirror/camera that has debuted on the Cadillac CT6 and XT5.
      The 2018 Buick Enclave hits dealers this fall.
      Source: Buick
      Press Release is on Page 2


      First-Ever Enclave Avenir Offers Progressive, Family-Oriented Luxury
      Enclave ushers in the arrival of Buick’s new luxury sub-brand NEW YORK — Debuting with the 2018 Buick Enclave, the new Avenir sub-brand represents the highest expression of Buick luxury. Avenir offers unique styling cues and an extensive set of standard features and premium materials throughout the vehicle. New and versatile functionality, interior spaciousness, and intuitive technologies build on the Enclave’s established popularity.
      Smart innovation and style come standard on the 2018 Buick Enclave Avenir. Buick-first Evonik Acrylite exterior lighting illuminates the road ahead with the power of more than 100 LEDs across the vehicle. A Rear Camera Mirror provides a clearer, broader view of what’s behind. And in-vehicle ionization leaves the air cleaner and fresher. It’s all packaged within an elegant design that combines concept car inspiration with improved interior luxury amenities and roominess for up to seven passengers.
      “The Enclave has been a successful formula for the Buick brand, with sales results that have defied traditional product cycles, and 90 percent of customers purchasing in the top two trim levels,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick and GMC. “It’s a beacon for the modern, attainable luxury Buick stands for and is a natural place to launch Avenir.”
      Enclave Avenir highlights
      Avenir model comes standard with extensive active safety, connectivity and luxury features for a simple and convenient buying experience. It has an all-new body structure for safety, strength and mass efficiency, plus 17 radar, camera and ultrasonic sensors when fully equipped. It accommodates seven passengers comfortably and offers more cargo volume behind the first row than the Acura MDX, Audi Q7 and Infiniti QX60. Standard hands-free power-programmable liftgate with a Buick tri-shield logo illuminates the ground below the hidden sensor and power-folding third row. Avenir-exclusive 3-dimensional mesh grille, badging, pearl nickel 20-inch aluminum wheels and luxurious interior materials are standard. Buick-first Rear Camera Mirror is standard on Avenir. Buick-first Evonik Acrylite lighting technology provides a distinctive light signature. Tow capacity of up to 5,000 pounds is more than enough to tow a typical 21-foot sport boat. A standard 3.6L V-6 engine with stop/start technology, Buick-estimated 302 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Standard five-link rear suspension and available continuously variable real-time damping (CDC) offer a refined, isolated ride. Available intelligent AWD with active twin-clutch rear differential and Buick-first switchable AWD help improve control and efficiency. Avenir: Buick’s highest expression of exclusive style, inclusive luxury
      All Avenir models will feature an exclusive 3-dimensional mesh grille paired with chrome wings inspired by Buick concept cars. Additional Enclave Avenir notable styling cues include 20-inch, six-spoke wheels with a pearl nickel finish; five premium exterior colors; an Avenir Chestnut and Ebony interior with piping on the seats and contrasting stitching; embroidered first-row headrests; Avenir floor-mats; a wood-accented steering wheel; and bold Avenir-scripted sill plates on all four doors.
      A wide array of advanced technologies and interior features emphasizing premium comfort and inclusive luxury comes standard in the Enclave Avenir, including heated and ventilated front seats; heated second-row seats; navigation; wireless charging; a dual moonroof; an 8-inch diagonal reconfigurable cluster display; a 360-degree surround vision camera system for easier parking; and a rear camera mirror that can function as a traditional mirror or as a camera, eliminating obstructions such as heads and headrests while expanding the rear field of vision by an estimated 300 percent.
      Available adaptive cruise control and full speed Forward Automatic Braking offer customers even more safety feature options, and a premium suspension with continuously variable real-time damping (CDC) provides a smooth, comfortable ride, with enhanced body control and handling in Sport mode.
      “This is a vehicle intended for Buick customers who demand the best and the latest our brand has to offer,” said Aldred.
      Elegant design and functionality define the all-new Buick Enclave
      The Enclave’s new design architecture enables a balanced, athletic appearance. New proportions give it a sleeker look with aerodynamic benefits for efficiency. The roofline is lower, the windshield is sharper and the wheelbase is extended, giving the vehicle a more dramatic stance. Its sculpted body creates a windswept appearance. Its interior is inviting and harmonious.
      Extensive use of LEDs is integrated into Buick’s first application of Evonik Acrylite technology and bi-functional LED projector headlamps and LED tail lamps. The technology’s compound curvature application creates a smooth, uniform and recognizable appearance that will make the Enclave stand out on the road. IntelliBeam headlamps also allow drivers to experience better road illumination and improved visibility without having to manually switch the high beams on and off.
      A significantly enhanced suite of available advanced safety technologies is engineered to help drivers monitor their surroundings and feel confident when behind the wheel. Standard safety equipment on all 2018 Enclaves includes a rear vision camera, rear park assist and seven air bags, including a front center side airbag. Among the available crash-avoidance technologies are rear cross traffic alert, front pedestrian braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning, safety alert seat and surround vision.
      Having leveraged the first-generation Enclave as a benchmark for quietness, the 2018 Enclave cabin is engineered to further minimize unwanted interior noise through its honed exterior shapes, sealing and sound-deadening acoustics and strategic use of materials throughout. QuietTuning and active noise cancellation enhancements help to reduce, block and absorb noise, keeping it from entering the cabin. A 10-speaker Bose Premium sound system with new components, new tuning and a redesigned bass enclosure further enhances the sound experience.
      Another lifestyle-enhancing feature in the Enclave interior is an air ionizer that eliminates odors and provides higher air quality. It works by producing negatively charged particles that attract air-borne contaminants and break down their structure, cleaning the cabin air. The ionizer can help address external and internal odors and reduce bacteria, viruses, dust, debris and pollen, while also helping improve driver alertness. It requires no maintenance or filter replacement.
      Enclave’s interior has flexible cargo solutions for large and small items. The vehicle has 10 percent more cubic feet of overall interior space when including the hidden underfloor storage, and 23.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row. Other space enhancements include a 10-inch-deep dry underfloor storage with 3.1 cubic feet of space.
      Second- and third-row seating fold flat to create a wide, nearly-flat load floor. A power-folding third row makes reconfiguring more convenient, while second-row SmartSlide Seats provide easy access to the third row. On the passenger side, the SmartSlide seat provides pitch slide functionality to allow access even with an empty forward-facing child seat installed (using the LATCH system).
      Additional standard equipment on every 2018 Enclave includes keyless entry and push-button start, a hands-free power-programmable liftgate with a Buick tri-shield logo illuminating the ground below the hidden sensor, tri-zone automatic climate control, universal home remote and more.
      Every Enclave also comes equipped with an OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot (AT&T data plan purchase required after limited data trial period) and five years of the OnStar Basic Plan[1] at no additional cost. Among other benefits like an industry-leading myBuick app, this connectivity plan features OnStar Smart Driver, an opt-in service designed to help Buick owners maximize their vehicle’s overall performance and become better drivers.
      A frameless 8-inch diagonal infotainment system with Teen Driver, Rear Seat Reminder[2], and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility is standard. Every Enclave features Rear Seat Reminder2, an industry-first feature designed to remind drivers to check the back seat as they exit their vehicles under certain circumstances.
      The Enclave will continue to be manufactured in Lansing, Michigan, and goes on sale in the fall of 2017. Pricing and other details will be announced later this year.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      To say the Buick Enclave was well past its sell-by-date would be an understatement. But to be fair, the Enclave was one of Buick's best-sellers. The 2018 Enclave that debuted tonight in New York has some big shoes to fill.
      The basic shape of the 2018 Enclave is the same as the outgoing model. What has changed are the front and rear ends. Buick's designers took the front off the Avista concept and put it onto the Enclave. The distinct grille with the Buick emblem floating and slim headlights are here. Around back is a restyled tailgate with a large chrome bar and narrow taillights.
      Buick borrowed the dash from LaCrosse for the Enclave's interior with flowing curves, high-quality materials, and an 8-inch screen featuring the latest version of the Intelllink infotainment system. In terms of seating, Enclave can seat up to seven people. Buick says overall space has increased by 10 percent and with the 3rd-row up, offers up 23.6 cubic feet of space.
      Power still comes from a 3.6L V6 offering up 302 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. A nine-speed automatic and the choice of either front-wheel or all-wheel drive.
      Buick also used this event to launch the Avenir subbrand with the Enclave being the first model. Avenir models feature special badging, 20-inch wheels, LED headlights, contrast stitching and piping on the seats, dual moonroofs, navigation, and the rearview mirror/camera that has debuted on the Cadillac CT6 and XT5.
      The 2018 Buick Enclave hits dealers this fall.
      Source: Buick
      Press Release is on Page 2


      First-Ever Enclave Avenir Offers Progressive, Family-Oriented Luxury
      Enclave ushers in the arrival of Buick’s new luxury sub-brand NEW YORK — Debuting with the 2018 Buick Enclave, the new Avenir sub-brand represents the highest expression of Buick luxury. Avenir offers unique styling cues and an extensive set of standard features and premium materials throughout the vehicle. New and versatile functionality, interior spaciousness, and intuitive technologies build on the Enclave’s established popularity.
      Smart innovation and style come standard on the 2018 Buick Enclave Avenir. Buick-first Evonik Acrylite exterior lighting illuminates the road ahead with the power of more than 100 LEDs across the vehicle. A Rear Camera Mirror provides a clearer, broader view of what’s behind. And in-vehicle ionization leaves the air cleaner and fresher. It’s all packaged within an elegant design that combines concept car inspiration with improved interior luxury amenities and roominess for up to seven passengers.
      “The Enclave has been a successful formula for the Buick brand, with sales results that have defied traditional product cycles, and 90 percent of customers purchasing in the top two trim levels,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick and GMC. “It’s a beacon for the modern, attainable luxury Buick stands for and is a natural place to launch Avenir.”
      Enclave Avenir highlights
      Avenir model comes standard with extensive active safety, connectivity and luxury features for a simple and convenient buying experience. It has an all-new body structure for safety, strength and mass efficiency, plus 17 radar, camera and ultrasonic sensors when fully equipped. It accommodates seven passengers comfortably and offers more cargo volume behind the first row than the Acura MDX, Audi Q7 and Infiniti QX60. Standard hands-free power-programmable liftgate with a Buick tri-shield logo illuminates the ground below the hidden sensor and power-folding third row. Avenir-exclusive 3-dimensional mesh grille, badging, pearl nickel 20-inch aluminum wheels and luxurious interior materials are standard. Buick-first Rear Camera Mirror is standard on Avenir. Buick-first Evonik Acrylite lighting technology provides a distinctive light signature. Tow capacity of up to 5,000 pounds is more than enough to tow a typical 21-foot sport boat. A standard 3.6L V-6 engine with stop/start technology, Buick-estimated 302 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Standard five-link rear suspension and available continuously variable real-time damping (CDC) offer a refined, isolated ride. Available intelligent AWD with active twin-clutch rear differential and Buick-first switchable AWD help improve control and efficiency. Avenir: Buick’s highest expression of exclusive style, inclusive luxury
      All Avenir models will feature an exclusive 3-dimensional mesh grille paired with chrome wings inspired by Buick concept cars. Additional Enclave Avenir notable styling cues include 20-inch, six-spoke wheels with a pearl nickel finish; five premium exterior colors; an Avenir Chestnut and Ebony interior with piping on the seats and contrasting stitching; embroidered first-row headrests; Avenir floor-mats; a wood-accented steering wheel; and bold Avenir-scripted sill plates on all four doors.
      A wide array of advanced technologies and interior features emphasizing premium comfort and inclusive luxury comes standard in the Enclave Avenir, including heated and ventilated front seats; heated second-row seats; navigation; wireless charging; a dual moonroof; an 8-inch diagonal reconfigurable cluster display; a 360-degree surround vision camera system for easier parking; and a rear camera mirror that can function as a traditional mirror or as a camera, eliminating obstructions such as heads and headrests while expanding the rear field of vision by an estimated 300 percent.
      Available adaptive cruise control and full speed Forward Automatic Braking offer customers even more safety feature options, and a premium suspension with continuously variable real-time damping (CDC) provides a smooth, comfortable ride, with enhanced body control and handling in Sport mode.
      “This is a vehicle intended for Buick customers who demand the best and the latest our brand has to offer,” said Aldred.
      Elegant design and functionality define the all-new Buick Enclave
      The Enclave’s new design architecture enables a balanced, athletic appearance. New proportions give it a sleeker look with aerodynamic benefits for efficiency. The roofline is lower, the windshield is sharper and the wheelbase is extended, giving the vehicle a more dramatic stance. Its sculpted body creates a windswept appearance. Its interior is inviting and harmonious.
      Extensive use of LEDs is integrated into Buick’s first application of Evonik Acrylite technology and bi-functional LED projector headlamps and LED tail lamps. The technology’s compound curvature application creates a smooth, uniform and recognizable appearance that will make the Enclave stand out on the road. IntelliBeam headlamps also allow drivers to experience better road illumination and improved visibility without having to manually switch the high beams on and off.
      A significantly enhanced suite of available advanced safety technologies is engineered to help drivers monitor their surroundings and feel confident when behind the wheel. Standard safety equipment on all 2018 Enclaves includes a rear vision camera, rear park assist and seven air bags, including a front center side airbag. Among the available crash-avoidance technologies are rear cross traffic alert, front pedestrian braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning, safety alert seat and surround vision.
      Having leveraged the first-generation Enclave as a benchmark for quietness, the 2018 Enclave cabin is engineered to further minimize unwanted interior noise through its honed exterior shapes, sealing and sound-deadening acoustics and strategic use of materials throughout. QuietTuning and active noise cancellation enhancements help to reduce, block and absorb noise, keeping it from entering the cabin. A 10-speaker Bose Premium sound system with new components, new tuning and a redesigned bass enclosure further enhances the sound experience.
      Another lifestyle-enhancing feature in the Enclave interior is an air ionizer that eliminates odors and provides higher air quality. It works by producing negatively charged particles that attract air-borne contaminants and break down their structure, cleaning the cabin air. The ionizer can help address external and internal odors and reduce bacteria, viruses, dust, debris and pollen, while also helping improve driver alertness. It requires no maintenance or filter replacement.
      Enclave’s interior has flexible cargo solutions for large and small items. The vehicle has 10 percent more cubic feet of overall interior space when including the hidden underfloor storage, and 23.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row. Other space enhancements include a 10-inch-deep dry underfloor storage with 3.1 cubic feet of space.
      Second- and third-row seating fold flat to create a wide, nearly-flat load floor. A power-folding third row makes reconfiguring more convenient, while second-row SmartSlide Seats provide easy access to the third row. On the passenger side, the SmartSlide seat provides pitch slide functionality to allow access even with an empty forward-facing child seat installed (using the LATCH system).
      Additional standard equipment on every 2018 Enclave includes keyless entry and push-button start, a hands-free power-programmable liftgate with a Buick tri-shield logo illuminating the ground below the hidden sensor, tri-zone automatic climate control, universal home remote and more.
      Every Enclave also comes equipped with an OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot (AT&T data plan purchase required after limited data trial period) and five years of the OnStar Basic Plan[1] at no additional cost. Among other benefits like an industry-leading myBuick app, this connectivity plan features OnStar Smart Driver, an opt-in service designed to help Buick owners maximize their vehicle’s overall performance and become better drivers.
      A frameless 8-inch diagonal infotainment system with Teen Driver, Rear Seat Reminder[2], and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility is standard. Every Enclave features Rear Seat Reminder2, an industry-first feature designed to remind drivers to check the back seat as they exit their vehicles under certain circumstances.
      The Enclave will continue to be manufactured in Lansing, Michigan, and goes on sale in the fall of 2017. Pricing and other details will be announced later this year.
    • By William Maley
      Last week saw the PSA Group (parent company of Citroen and Peugeot) purchasing Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for $2.3 billion. This move would make the PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. We already know some of the plans that PSA Group has for their new brands such as setting operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 (jumps to 6 percent by 2026) and the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa being the first new product developed with PSA. But as we alluded to in the original news story, there are a lot of questions that remain unanswered such as possible job cuts or what happens to Buick and Holden as they share products with Opel. I have been doing a bit of thinking on these and some other questions. The end result is this piece.
      1: Will there be job cuts and plant closures?
      In 2016, PSA Group employed 172,000 people worldwide. With the acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall, they will be adding close to 42,000 workers (the majority of those from Opel). The number of plants will also increase to 28 due to this purchase. Sooner or later, PSA Group is going have to make cuts. During the press conference announcing the deal, PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares said the company “would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution.” That may be true for now, but this might change within the coming years. Some analysts believe PSA Group will close two to three plants within five years.
      The most likely place where the closures and layoffs could take place is in Great Britain. The reason as we talked about in a story back in February deals with the decision made by British citizens last year with leaving the European Union.
      “By leaving, the country would lose access to the EU Single Market which guarantees unconstrained trade across the member states. It would mean various countries would be leveraging tariffs on British-made goods, making production in the country less competitive.”
      Former British member of parliament and business secretary Sir Vincent Cable outlined how bad this decision looks for Vauxhall in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4.
      There could be a way that the British Government could at least stall the possible closures. Back in October, the British Government worked out a secret deal with Nissan to keep them investing in British car production at their plant in Sunderland. This deal caused an uproar as the details were kept as many believed the British Government would be handing over money to keep Nissan happy. But sources told British newspaper The Independent back in January that the deal had no mention of money.
      It could be that the British Government could do something similar for PSA Group to keep jobs, but it is too early to say if this will happen or not.
      2: Will this affect PSA’s plans of entering the U.S.?
      Probably not. Let’s remember that PSA Group is working through a ten-year plan that may or may not see the return of the Citroen and Peugeot, along with the introduction of DS to the country. Already, the first part of this plan is gearing up for the launch of a car sharing service next month. There is also extensive research going on into the U.S. marketplace. 
      But could there be a possibility of Opel or Vauxhall vehicles being sold here? It would not be surprising if there isn’t talk about this at PSA Group’s HQ. But there is a slight complication to this idea. As part of the sale, PSA Group cannot sell any Opel vehicles developed by GM anywhere in various markets outside of Europe (China and U.S. for example) until they transition to PSA platforms. That means a number of models such as the Astra, Insignia, and Mokka are out of the question for the time being. If Opel was chosen to be one of the brands PSA would sell in the U.S., they might not have a full line of vehicles to sell due to this clause.
      3: What does the future hold for Buick and Holden?
      If there are some losers from the sale of Opel, it has to Buick and Holden. Buick has found some success with Opel products as the Encore (rebadged Mokka) has become one the best-selling models for the brand. Holden is getting a shot in the arm as the Astra will hopefully help their fortunes in the compact space, and the new Commodore (rebadged Insignia) has a tough task ahead of it with living up to an iconic name. For the time being, Opel will continue supplying models to both brands. It is what happens in the future that many are concerned about.
      During the Geneva Motor Show, GM President Dan Ammann said something very interest to Australian journalists about the future of Holden’s products.
      This makes sense as the Astra was only launched and the Commodore is getting ready to go on sale. But I wouldn’t be surprised if talks begin very soon about this very topic. The same talks are likely to begin at Buick soon where they face the same issue for the Regal and Encore. Our hunch is Buick might have the easier time of two. The Encore would continue on since it shares the same platform as the Chevrolet Trax. As for the Regal, it could leave Buick’s lineup once the next-generation model runs its course.
      4: Does GM lose anything with this deal?
      There has been a lot of talk about how much money will be freed up from the sale of Opel/Vauxhall for GM, along with making a bit more profit. But it comes at a cost that could hurt GM down the road. The recent crop of compact and midsize sedans from GM owe a lot to Opel’s engineering knowledge. Vehicles that excel in driving dynamics and fuel economy are worth their weight in gold when it comes to the European marketplace. As we know, one part of why GM went into bankruptcy was the lack of competitive small and midsize cars that got good fuel economy. Opel would prove to be GM’s savior with this key knowledge.
      Right now, compacts and midsize sedans aren’t selling as consumers are directing their attention to crossovers and SUVs. This is due in part to lower gas prices. But sooner or later, the price of gas will go back up and cause many to go back to smaller vehicles. With talk about GM scaling back on their small and midsize car lineup, this decision could have consequences down the road. Plus with Opel out of the picture, GM doesn’t have someone it can rely on to get these models back to the forefront. We can hope GM’s North American office has learned some stuff when working with their European counterparts.
    • By William Maley
      Last week saw the PSA Group (parent company of Citroen and Peugeot) purchasing Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for $2.3 billion. This move would make the PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. We already know some of the plans that PSA Group has for their new brands such as setting operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 (jumps to 6 percent by 2026) and the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa being the first new product developed with PSA. But as we alluded to in the original news story, there are a lot of questions that remain unanswered such as possible job cuts or what happens to Buick and Holden as they share products with Opel. I have been doing a bit of thinking on these and some other questions. The end result is this piece.
      1: Will there be job cuts and plant closures?
      In 2016, PSA Group employed 172,000 people worldwide. With the acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall, they will be adding close to 42,000 workers (the majority of those from Opel). The number of plants will also increase to 28 due to this purchase. Sooner or later, PSA Group is going have to make cuts. During the press conference announcing the deal, PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares said the company “would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution.” That may be true for now, but this might change within the coming years. Some analysts believe PSA Group will close two to three plants within five years.
      The most likely place where the closures and layoffs could take place is in Great Britain. The reason as we talked about in a story back in February deals with the decision made by British citizens last year with leaving the European Union.
      “By leaving, the country would lose access to the EU Single Market which guarantees unconstrained trade across the member states. It would mean various countries would be leveraging tariffs on British-made goods, making production in the country less competitive.”
      Former British member of parliament and business secretary Sir Vincent Cable outlined how bad this decision looks for Vauxhall in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4.
      There could be a way that the British Government could at least stall the possible closures. Back in October, the British Government worked out a secret deal with Nissan to keep them investing in British car production at their plant in Sunderland. This deal caused an uproar as the details were kept as many believed the British Government would be handing over money to keep Nissan happy. But sources told British newspaper The Independent back in January that the deal had no mention of money.
      It could be that the British Government could do something similar for PSA Group to keep jobs, but it is too early to say if this will happen or not.
      2: Will this affect PSA’s plans of entering the U.S.?
      Probably not. Let’s remember that PSA Group is working through a ten-year plan that may or may not see the return of the Citroen and Peugeot, along with the introduction of DS to the country. Already, the first part of this plan is gearing up for the launch of a car sharing service next month. There is also extensive research going on into the U.S. marketplace. 
      But could there be a possibility of Opel or Vauxhall vehicles being sold here? It would not be surprising if there isn’t talk about this at PSA Group’s HQ. But there is a slight complication to this idea. As part of the sale, PSA Group cannot sell any Opel vehicles developed by GM anywhere in various markets outside of Europe (China and U.S. for example) until they transition to PSA platforms. That means a number of models such as the Astra, Insignia, and Mokka are out of the question for the time being. If Opel was chosen to be one of the brands PSA would sell in the U.S., they might not have a full line of vehicles to sell due to this clause.
      3: What does the future hold for Buick and Holden?
      If there are some losers from the sale of Opel, it has to Buick and Holden. Buick has found some success with Opel products as the Encore (rebadged Mokka) has become one the best-selling models for the brand. Holden is getting a shot in the arm as the Astra will hopefully help their fortunes in the compact space, and the new Commodore (rebadged Insignia) has a tough task ahead of it with living up to an iconic name. For the time being, Opel will continue supplying models to both brands. It is what happens in the future that many are concerned about.
      During the Geneva Motor Show, GM President Dan Ammann said something very interest to Australian journalists about the future of Holden’s products.
      This makes sense as the Astra was only launched and the Commodore is getting ready to go on sale. But I wouldn’t be surprised if talks begin very soon about this very topic. The same talks are likely to begin at Buick soon where they face the same issue for the Regal and Encore. Our hunch is Buick might have the easier time of two. The Encore would continue on since it shares the same platform as the Chevrolet Trax. As for the Regal, it could leave Buick’s lineup once the next-generation model runs its course.
      4: Does GM lose anything with this deal?
      There has been a lot of talk about how much money will be freed up from the sale of Opel/Vauxhall for GM, along with making a bit more profit. But it comes at a cost that could hurt GM down the road. The recent crop of compact and midsize sedans from GM owe a lot to Opel’s engineering knowledge. Vehicles that excel in driving dynamics and fuel economy are worth their weight in gold when it comes to the European marketplace. As we know, one part of why GM went into bankruptcy was the lack of competitive small and midsize cars that got good fuel economy. Opel would prove to be GM’s savior with this key knowledge.
      Right now, compacts and midsize sedans aren’t selling as consumers are directing their attention to crossovers and SUVs. This is due in part to lower gas prices. But sooner or later, the price of gas will go back up and cause many to go back to smaller vehicles. With talk about GM scaling back on their small and midsize car lineup, this decision could have consequences down the road. Plus with Opel out of the picture, GM doesn’t have someone it can rely on to get these models back to the forefront. We can hope GM’s North American office has learned some stuff when working with their European counterparts.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      General Motors seems being in a cutting mood as it drives to improve its profit margins and stock price. Last week saw the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Group and it's only the beginning said GM CEO Mary Barra.
      Automotive News reports that GM is considering reducing investments in North American cars and "select" international markets according to a chart that was shared during a conference call with analysts last week. The chart says these two earned a spot on the chopping block due to low profit potential and weak strength in franchises.
      "There's a little bit more work that we're doing in the international markets. Our overall philosophy is that every country, every market segment has to earn its cost of capital," Barra said on the conference call. 
      Barra and GM President Dan Ammann declined to go into details about these plans.
      GM has already made significant changes in terms of their international operations by ending or reducing operations Australia, Indonesia, Russia, and Thailand. The automaker has also scaled back plans in India. The comments made during the call suggest more cuts could take place here and possibly elsewhere.
      As for 'reducing investments in North American cars', this likely means GM is taking a hard look at various segments in passenger car segment. With consumers trending towards utility vehicles and trucks, sales of passenger cars have been falling precipitously. As of March 1st, dealers had four month's worth of inventory of cars, compared to an 81-day supply for light trucks and less than 60-days for full-size SUVs. GM could walk away from certain segments such as compacts or full-size sedans, or delay investments in certain models.
      These moves will allow GM to funnel money into models that make more money, and returning capital to shareholders.
      "That's an immediate opportunity for us to reward shareholders without changing the risk profile of the company or our ability to manage through a downturn," GM CFO Chuck Stevens said.
      Analysts are mixed on GM's plans.
      "It takes a lot of discipline to shift away from a volume-is-king kind of mentality," she said. "In the end, that's going to make a better GM -- a longer-standing company that's not only more profitable but more relevant," said Rebecca Lindland, a senior analyst with Kelley Blue Book to Automotive News.
      John Murphy, an analyst with Bank of America Merrill Lynch isn't so sure about this plan.
      "It appears that GM's recent decision-making has become much more short-term-focused and, in our opinion, could create challenges for the company in the coming years," Murphy wrote in a report.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

      View full article
  • Recent Status Updates

  • Who's Online (See full list)