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    Justice Department Finds Criminal Wrongdoing In GM's Ignition Switch Defect


    • General Motors Has Some Criminal Wrongdoings

    Last year, federal prosecutors in Manhattan and the F.B.I. opened an investigation into General Motors into its handling of the ignition switch defect. The investigation focused on whether the automaker failed to comply with federal safety laws stating that an automaker must disclose vehicle defects in a timely fashion and misleading federal regulators on the full extent of problem. The result of their investigation showed that GM did commit criminal wrongdoing.

     

    The New York Times reports investigators from the Justice Department have found criminal wrongdoing in the failure of GM of disclosing a defect tied to at least 104 deaths. People briefed on the inquiry say the two parties are negotiating what misconduct the company would admit to and a settlement. The Times says the amount will eclipse the $1.2 billion paid by Toyota last year for not disclosing its problem with unintended acceleration. Now the settlement will include a so-called 'cooperation credit' as GM helped out in the Justice Department's investigation.

     

    “We are cooperating fully with all requests. We are unable to comment on the status of the investigation, including timing,” said GM in a statement.

     

    Also under investigation are former GM employees, some who were dismissed last year could face criminal charges.

     

    Source: The New York Times

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    This issue has given GM a pretty big black eye, I hope that they can maybe finally get the last bits of this settled and get to work on fixing their image.  It's horrible what has been going on with the Takata stuff (in particular Honda's part in it), but it may help GM by focusing the spotlight elsewhere and helping this to fade from the public consciousness a little bit.

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    Agreed, GM needs to settle this out quickly and move forward with the focus on quality and safety for the customer. Let Takata and the asian auto companies deal with the mess. Yes I know GM has a few that have those airbags, but lucky the main focus is on Honda.

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    Well, it is a bit of PR spin though for Marry Barra to downplay the criminal aspect as worrisome "incompetence and neglect". People died here! And it was good for the many Congressman to call her out for being so reckless in her responses to their questioning. 

     

    Otherwise, there's been safety debacles before with other automakers. Atleast now GM finally has the laser-vision like focus on getting better, not for the sake of beating others, but for the sake of being better than ever before.

     

    It'll be a slow, but calculated march back up with excellent product and a constant attention to reputation to bring back the goliath that was at one point the biggest, best and most profitable automaker ever. And don't expect anyone else to buckle against GM. As hard as GM punches, the rest will come back like bloodthirsty hounds to settle the score. 

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    Well, it is a bit of PR spin though for Marry Barra to downplay the criminal aspect as worrisome "incompetence and neglect". People died here! And it was good for the many Congressman to call her out for being so reckless in her responses to their questioning. 

     

    Otherwise, there's been safety debacles before with other automakers. Atleast now GM finally has the laser-vision like focus on getting better, not for the sake of beating others, but for the sake of being better than ever before.

     

    It'll be a slow, but calculated march back up with excellent product and a constant attention to reputation to bring back the goliath that was at one point the biggest, best and most profitable automaker ever. And don't expect anyone else to buckle against GM. As hard as GM punches, the rest will come back like bloodthirsty hounds to settle the score. 

    I agree, their renewed focus will be good not only for them, but for the industry as a whole.  They spent a long time as THE leader in sales with everyone trying to catch up, and it's everyone trying to catch up that leads to people innovating and trying to do better.

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    yeah...well...it WAS of criminal nature...

     

    But Im wonderin' is anybody gonna go to the slammer for this?

     

    In 2015 America...scratch that...because its not only corporate America that this disease is apparent...so...in 2015 Earth...are corporate weasels ever gonna be held accountable for their actions?

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    Ouch. GM's name is gonna be pulled through the mud for this.

     

    Wonder if there will be any prosocutions, and if so how long will the cases take? A couple years at the very least I'm betting.

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    The real deal is that this is not a case of the car ignition slipping into AUX mode and disabling the airbags and the driver not being able to restart the car. The deal is that the ignition would slip into AUX mode once an accident head-on occurred. In fact the only time I could see someone not being able to coast out of multiple lanes is if they are in stop and go traffic, never even reaching a speed that would cause them a serious collision in the first place. "Flashers on, Hold up traffic." What I can't figure out is why the hell we are so dependendt on these thing to save our lives as opposed to simply driving proper in the first place. The first one was a Cobalt driven by a drunk girl doing 69 miles an hour in a 25 m.p.h. zone. She died. But I have to ask, in that situation was it car's airbags at fault or the girl being drunk and doing almost 3X the speed limit?

     
    Let's delve deeper. Since GM is found liable, the car czars going over GM, supposedly with a fine tooth comb... since responsibility still remains with the Government that owned a controlling stake in the company for 5 years... shouldn't the Government be held so as well? N.H.T.S.A, after two Cobalt crashes, investigated the cause, each time raising the possibility of a defect. They met with GM but never opened a broader investigation into whether the car was defective. Never forcing GM to actually do a Recall. 
     
     

     

     

     


    Ouch. GM's name is gonna be pulled through the mud for this.

     

    Wonder if there will be any prosocutions, and if so how long will the cases take? A couple years at the very least I'm betting.

     

     

     

    Ouch???     Wings???   :yikes: 


    yeah...well...it WAS of criminal nature...

     

    But Im wonderin' is anybody gonna go to the slammer for this?

     

    In 2015 America...scratch that...because its not only corporate America that this disease is apparent...so...in 2015 Earth...are corporate weasels ever gonna be held accountable for their actions?

     

     

     

    Personally I'm sick of the drama.. but we all kno that the some won't let to go away. You can bet the press is perpetuating the issue. This country absolutely hates it's corporations, while very often at the same time loving foreign ones. Seriously. If the Revolutionary war were fought today, you can bet good money we'd be sending tax dollars to the Queen

    Edited by Cmicasa the Great
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    despite all the bad from GM here, make no mistake, this is another instance of the Dept Of Justice looking for any reason to swing a bigger axe.  This has probably been enflamed as much to make a federal agency look valuable as much as anything.

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    The real deal is that this is not a case of the car ignition slipping into AUX mode and disabling the airbags and the driver not being able to restart the car. The deal is that the ignition would slip into AUX mode once an accident head-on occurred. In fact the only time I could see someone not being able to coast out of multiple lanes is if they are in stop and go traffic, never even reaching a speed that would cause them a serious collision in the first place. "Flashers on, Hold up traffic." What I can't figure out is why the hell we are so dependendt on these thing to save our lives as opposed to simply driving proper in the first place. The first one was a Cobalt driven by a drunk girl doing 69 miles an hour in a 25 m.p.h. zone. She died. But I have to ask, in that situation was it car's airbags at fault or the girl being drunk and doing almost 3X the speed limit?

     
    Let's delve deeper. Since GM is found liable, the car czars going over GM, supposedly with a fine tooth comb... since responsibility still remains with the Government that owned a controlling stake in the company for 5 years... shouldn't the Government be held so as well? N.H.T.S.A, after two Cobalt crashes, investigated the cause, each time raising the possibility of a defect. They met with GM but never opened a broader investigation into whether the car was defective. Never forcing GM to actually do a Recall. 
     
     

     

     

     

    Ouch. GM's name is gonna be pulled through the mud for this.

     

    Wonder if there will be any prosocutions, and if so how long will the cases take? A couple years at the very least I'm betting.

     

     

     

    Ouch???     Wings???   :yikes: 

    yeah...well...it WAS of criminal nature...

     

    But Im wonderin' is anybody gonna go to the slammer for this?

     

    In 2015 America...scratch that...because its not only corporate America that this disease is apparent...so...in 2015 Earth...are corporate weasels ever gonna be held accountable for their actions?

     

     

     

    Personally I'm sick of the drama.. but we all kno that the some won't let to go away. You can bet the press is perpetuating the issue. This country absolutely hates it's corporations, while very often at the same time loving foreign ones. Seriously. If the Revolutionary war were fought today, you can bet good money we'd be sending tax dollars to the Queen

     

    Terrible post. You of all people, why am I not surprised? 

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    Ouch. GM's name is gonna be pulled through the mud for this.

     

    Wonder if there will be any prosocutions, and if so how long will the cases take? A couple years at the very least I'm betting.

     

     

     

    Ouch???     Wings???   :yikes: 

    New profile, few downer anti-GM posts, a guy supposedly from England who heard a Ford UTE the other day...

    Ya. Fits the profile. Ah well.

    yeah...well...it WAS of criminal nature...

     

    But Im wonderin' is anybody gonna go to the slammer for this?

     

    In 2015 America...scratch that...because its not only corporate America that this disease is apparent...so...in 2015 Earth...are corporate weasels ever gonna be held accountable for their actions?

     

     

     

    Personally I'm sick of the drama.. but we all kno that the some won't let to go away. You can bet the press is perpetuating the issue. This country absolutely hates it's corporations, while very often at the same time loving foreign ones. Seriously. If the Revolutionary war were fought today, you can bet good money we'd be sending tax dollars to the Queen

    The courts are well within their right to press forward with the issue. But yes, there has to be some context to the investigation-it CANNOT become a witch-hunt. The Toyota and Takata messes need to be considered in any similar action versus GM.

    Media bias against GM?... Nah-media bias against anything the media doesn't like. Don Henley didn't write "Dirty Laundry" for nothing.

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    Im sick of all this too...

    However, GM tried to cover it up...and THAT is what Im concerned about.

     

    Not the fact that they tried to save a few pennies on a part that they made another company re-engineer.

    That company also kept things under wraps...as to not lose the contract.

     

    My comment was directed towards the HUMAN element...not the corporation...not GM...but the people that were in charge of those decisions that were criminal.

    Delphi...the head honcho of that contract...if I remember correctly...his engineers hinted of a possible failure...yet the head QC guy went ahead...

     

     

    My dad...worked at Canadair (Bombardier Aerospace) for 40 years.

    The last 15 years or so...he was the head manager of Quality Control.

    Before he released an airplane part or the entire aircraft...depending on the contract he was in charge of, his inspectors would inspect...and he would scrutinize EVERYTHING...and if it passed....he then proceeded to sign off the part or airplane...his signature was the last signature before the client received...

     

    In one case...a Boeing 767 pressure dome was rushed by production because Canadair was tight on its deadline...the head manager of production and the general manager of the contract pressured my dad to just release the part...my dad REFUSED....his boss...and their was only 2 bosses above my dad...his direct boss....in charge of that contract and the Canadair President...well...he told off his direct boss and his boss threatened my dad that he would be fired...for doing his job...well my dad called that bluff, he said that he will not only hire a lawyer...but will go DIRECTLY to Boeing and tell them waz up...and my dad did EXACTLY that...my dad had the cojones to STAND UP to that corporate culture of just putting human beings in danger...

     

    Boeing flew my dad to Seattle to straighten matters up...

    Result...the head production guy got fired...my dad's direct boss DEMOTED...

     

    My dad...well...he continued on...

    My dad was head QC guy with these contracts...

     

    Boeing 767 pressure dome

    McDonnel Douglas F-18 barrel nose

    RCAF CF-18 Hornet  maintenance program

    Canadair Challenger....yup the whole aircraft before being delivered to rich assed customer...

    Canadair CL-215/CL415 water bomber...yup the whole aircraft...

     

    When my dad's time to retire came up...Canadair wanted my dad to be in charge of the Regional Jet program in Wichita,Kansas... my dad kindly declined...he was 65 and was worn out by the constant corner cutting by production and trying to weasel parts that barely make tolerances...and these are aircraft...tolerances in airplanes HAVE to be respected...because disaster strikes quickly up in the air...

     

    And that is what the corporate culture is lacking today...

    People that have morals.

    People that actually care about the consequences....and are not just about missing deadlines and cost cutting measures...

     

    While El K...I understand the cost cutting measures that GM was forced to have because of what happened in the 1970s...because the Detroit 3 was FORCED to comply with the foreign makes PUSHING themselves in the North American market....because our governments fell head over heels with the foreign makes...

     

    Yeah I know...the Detroit 3 made crappy cars....

    Its not ONLY that...

    Because the foreign makes ALSO made crappy cars in THAT SAME TIME frame...

     

    Not to stray too far apart from this...

     

    Point that I want to make...

    Some corporate weasels dont have the cojones to stand up for what is right...

    Some corporate weasels will sell their moms...and themselves...for the all mighty dollar...

     

    This mentality WILL ALWAYS result in disasters and/or fake bankruptcies that steal money from regular folk...

    And our governments ALLOW for this to happen...

    And...no punishment...

     

    Sure...Bernie Madoff and Conrad Black are in jail...how many others deserve not only jail time...but Mr. Executioner as well?

     

    This is not a rant against GM...or Ford..or even Honda because I mentioned foreign makes...

    This rant is against all that is evil within  a criminal corporate culture...

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    You may add that the girl did not have a seat belt on.
     

    This is the true issue in many of the cases. I do not forgive those who were involved for the cheap part but so many of those who died cause the accident they died in and in many cases did not use their seat belts that may very well have kept them alive regardless of any other factor.

     

    I studied the first 13 deaths and almost  all had contributing circumstances that contributed directly to their living and dying. Sorry to those who like to blame big business for everything but it is time people take responsibility also for their actions and lawyers to stop playing corporate blackmail with large companies. The only people hurt by these lawyers are use the consumers as we pay for these settlement that the family gets often less than 50% of and the lawyers love to settle out of court as they often would lose but with the expense of dragging a company being so high in in cost and PR they find it easier to pay out the blackmail.

     

    The bottom line is here Air Bags are a supplemental restrain that need to be used in conjunction with a seat belt. Fail to use the belt often they are killed or injured just buy the bag. Having eaten one myself I know the damage that can happen just from the bag alone and if unrestrained they can easily snap a neck.

     

    On GM's part it is very easy to believe this never was know buy many inside. GM's culture was in pretty bad shape and communication was extremely poor. GM could not even communicate internally well enough to improve their cars and save money on duplication of parts.

    The 08 Malibu was the first car to get world class panel gaps and why? Because the metal shop was never told to do better and could not act on their own to do so. It took Bob Lutz to tell them to fix it and never wait again to be told.

    GM was also fingered as the best company to sell parts too by a bearing rep. He said he could sell the same bearing to GM 5 different times under 5 different numbers and at 5 different prices because they had no clue what they were buying.

     

    Yes things were that bad and for someone who made a mistake to create a bad part could have easily hid it from everyone but a few as most of the time in this era the left hand knew not what the right hand was doing.

     

    GM will get a big fine and this will be put to bed. This was not the first time a company had an issue like this and it is not the last. I expect to the new air bag issue to catch the media attention and get the if it bleeds it leads treatment.

    Even with the odds over 5 million to one that it will happen to you. Lightening Is only 250.000 to one that you will get struck.

     

    People die everyday and from many things. and so often the lawyers just eat it up and cost us millions yearly in lawsuits that really do not mean jack to most of us but we end up paying for,

    I just wish the bias media would have covered this more evenly and not yielded to the groups the lawyers pay to get the extra media attention.

     

    The book What did Jesus Drive is a very good book covering issues at Nissan, Ford and Chrysler and how the lawyers dig in their claws. I recommend the read as it really spells out the side you never hear.

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    Thing is... Conrad Black is no longer in jail. Whatever you may think of the man, most of his convictions were overturned, in no small part because they were originally laid in Chicago, which is to unbiased trials what McDonald's is to fine cuisine. And Black, for all his shortcomings, does have a way with the pen that I admire.

    Anyway, digression over.

    Edited by El Kabong
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    You may add that the girl did not have a seat belt on.

     

    This is the true issue in many of the cases. I do not forgive those who were involved for the cheap part but so many of those who died cause the accident they died in and in many cases did not use their seat belts that may very well have kept them alive regardless of any other factor.

     

    I studied the first 13 deaths and almost  all had contributing circumstances that contributed directly to their living and dying. Sorry to those who like to blame big business for everything but it is time people take responsibility also for their actions and lawyers to stop playing corporate blackmail with large companies. The only people hurt by these lawyers are use the consumers as we pay for these settlement that the family gets often less than 50% of and the lawyers love to settle out of court as they often would lose but with the expense of dragging a company being so high in in cost and PR they find it easier to pay out the blackmail.

     

    The bottom line is here Air Bags are a supplemental restrain that need to be used in conjunction with a seat belt. Fail to use the belt often they are killed or injured just buy the bag. Having eaten one myself I know the damage that can happen just from the bag alone and if unrestrained they can easily snap a neck.

     

    On GM's part it is very easy to believe this never was know buy many inside. GM's culture was in pretty bad shape and communication was extremely poor. GM could not even communicate internally well enough to improve their cars and save money on duplication of parts.

    The 08 Malibu was the first car to get world class panel gaps and why? Because the metal shop was never told to do better and could not act on their own to do so. It took Bob Lutz to tell them to fix it and never wait again to be told.

    GM was also fingered as the best company to sell parts too by a bearing rep. He said he could sell the same bearing to GM 5 different times under 5 different numbers and at 5 different prices because they had no clue what they were buying.

     

    Yes things were that bad and for someone who made a mistake to create a bad part could have easily hid it from everyone but a few as most of the time in this era the left hand knew not what the right hand was doing.

     

    GM will get a big fine and this will be put to bed. This was not the first time a company had an issue like this and it is not the last. I expect to the new air bag issue to catch the media attention and get the if it bleeds it leads treatment.

    Even with the odds over 5 million to one that it will happen to you. Lightening Is only 250.000 to one that you will get struck.

     

    People die everyday and from many things. and so often the lawyers just eat it up and cost us millions yearly in lawsuits that really do not mean jack to most of us but we end up paying for,

    I just wish the bias media would have covered this more evenly and not yielded to the groups the lawyers pay to get the extra media attention.

     

    The book What did Jesus Drive is a very good book covering issues at Nissan, Ford and Chrysler and how the lawyers dig in their claws. I recommend the read as it really spells out the side you never hear.

     

     

    Yeah, most of it was BS....

     

    Kinda like McDonald's, anytime you can take a negative shot to the product...no matter what.....

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    You do have criminal corporate people but what gets left out of the discussion too often is the criminal legal lobby and lawyers.

    These folks take advantage of our system to enrich themselves on our dime. They go after companies so often on matters that are not fully stated or true. They prey on people who are willing to accept self responsibility and they give them a percentage as the legal rep takes the majority in corporate blackmail.

     

    We need tort reform in this country but we will never see it as the legal lobby plays a strong hand here as most people in DC are lawyers.

     

    While GM did screw up with bad ignitions there was intent to kill anyone. In most peoples minds a bad ignition ends up with a stalled car and you just restart it. Few would never consider an air bag not going off. Nor would most consider that they would be held responsible if people did not use their belts and were incapacitated in some way.

     

    I think when this turned bad the people who were the ones seen as responsible did cover themselves up and if they did it would have been easy to hide as communication inside GM was horrible. Lets face it just look at how many times GM shot themselves in the foot with poor communication and inter division fighting.

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    So wait... Wall Street can defraud people out of billions, if not trillions of dollars, no one goes to jail and they all get bonuses....... but then this?

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    Point that I want to make...

    Some corporate weasels dont have the cojones to stand up for what is right...

    Some corporate weasels will sell their moms...and themselves...for the all mighty dollar...

     

    This mentality WILL ALWAYS result in disasters and/or fake bankruptcies that steal money from regular folk...

    And our governments ALLOW for this to happen...

    And...no punishment...

     

    Yep ... the government allows a lot to happen that it claims to hold those responsible accountable.  False advertising being yet another example.

     

     

    Cort :) www.oldcarsstronghearts.com

    1979 & 1989 Caprice Classics | pigValve, paceMaker, cowValve
    "Something's wrong in the world today" __ Aerosmith __ 'Living On The Edge'
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    Point that I want to make...

    Some corporate weasels dont have the cojones to stand up for what is right...

    Some corporate weasels will sell their moms...and themselves...for the all mighty dollar...

     

    This mentality WILL ALWAYS result in disasters and/or fake bankruptcies that steal money from regular folk...

    And our governments ALLOW for this to happen...

    And...no punishment...

     

    Yep ... the government allows a lot to happen that it claims to hold those responsible accountable.  False advertising being yet another example.

     

     

    Cort :) www.oldcarsstronghearts.com

    1979 & 1989 Caprice Classics | pigValve, paceMaker, cowValve
    "Something's wrong in the world today" __ Aerosmith __ 'Living On The Edge'

     

    Many companies across many markets ride a very fine line with advertising, keeping things just on the legal side of true, while not being remotely realistic or honest.  Yet people will fall for it every time.  This is why I always found it funny when our instructors said that Americans one of the reasons we weren't allowed to run psyop on our own people was that it just wouldn't work.  Corporations run psyop on the American public every day and it works like a charm.

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    Just look at any Presidential, Senate and Congressional campaign and you will see plenty of false advertising. They don't even ride a fine line.

    Edited by hyperv6
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      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
    • 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)
    • By William Maley
      As General Motors begins to close the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Group, there are questions as to what GM will do in the European market afterwards. According to Automotive News, GM is planning to become a niche brand with selling Cadillac models, along with the Chevrolet Camaro and Corvette.
      “That is the plan at this time, to continue with those models and brands in Europe. We continue to grow the Cadillac brand. We’ll continue to do that in a very disciplined fashion,” said GM CEO Mary Barra on a conference call this morning.
      Cadillac has been trying to make end roads into Europe for a decade with middling success. Last year, Cadillac's 45 dealers in Europe (mostly in Germany and Switzerland) sold 781 vehicles, up 33 percent when compared to 2015. The brand has the goal of selling 5,000 vehicles yearly in Europe by the end of this decade. This includes sales of the Camaro and Corvette which are doing much better - more than 1,800 models sold last year. 
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

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