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Where are the GM high mileage cars?


ellives

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Ya know.... I'm one of GM's biggest fans... always have been.... and I love the new product they're coming out with - love the '08 CTS... the new Malibu looks great... GMT900's... can't beat 'em... but I *really* have to wonder when they're going to come out with a product that is "high mileage" competitive. It's time to take on ToyMotor where they live and breathe.

When I look at the new mileage ratings (and exclude the Prius for the time being) there isn't much there to compete with the likes of the high mileage product ToyMotor sells. GM needs something that beats the Corolla. I don't care how they do it - import it -- build it at home -- or a combination thereof but this is where Toyota got there toehold and they need to be taken out of the game there.

I hope they have a plan for this segment.

Any comments from the masses?

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Oh, I meant real-world and its the 3800. One of the cleanest V6s on the market, too. Look it up.

Unfortunately Powertrain North won't be getting any new assignments after the 3800, thus completely ending Buick's presence in Flint. Of course the factory will be about 104 years old when it finally closes and knowing GM's neverending commitment to Flint, we won't be getting a new factory to replace it.

Edited by AxelTheRed
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So Axel- are you saying 104-yrs is nothing, but 110; now we're talking 'commitment'? Just curious...

I was talking about GM's commitment to Flint as a whole. Powertrain North will close in a year or two and take another 2,600 jobs with it (on top of however many people will lose their jobs this year when Flint East shuts down) and knowing how things tend to go in Flint, there won't be a shiny new state-of-the-art factory to take its place.

See, Powertrain South is our newest facility and everyone loves to point at that and say "Look at how much they care" without realizing that the next newest plant in Flint is Flint Tool and Dye, the very last building left of Chevrolet...and its forty years old now and so insignificant that it could be closed tomorrow without so much as a "whoopsie-daisy" from General Motors.

How long the factory stayed open is pretty irrelevant next to the fact that its just another one of the seven plants that have closed or are scheduled to close around here that have taken 70,000+ jobs out of the area. One new factory in the last forty years only shows minimal commitment when you look at Lansing and see that they've had three factories open up since 2000.

Edited by AxelTheRed
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Oh, I meant real-world and its the 3800. One of the cleanest V6s on the market, too. Look it up.

It's nice the 3800 is efficient but it's not a competitor for the 4-banger in the Corolla as a high-mileage product. GM needs something competitve in this segment. This is not a place where unfortunately "bigger, better, faster" works.

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I agree with the above argument for the mid and full size card segments, but the point about the Corolla is well taken. The Aveo/Optra should get better gas mileage than they do, both on paper and in the real world. The Cobalt actually gets decent mileage in the real world, which closed the gap with the Corolla, but the Corolla/Civic still look better on paper.

In the small car segment and the so-called hybrid segment appearances are EVERYTHING. People want to feel warm and fuzzy about themselves.

Of course, the people who are actually doing something for the environment are taking the bus or bicycle to work..............

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In Europe Opel/Vauxhall have Eco models, and VW Bluemotion—mechanically the same, but with an aero kit specifically designed to increase fuel economy (marginally). It's an idea with merit in the US, for Saturn and Chevrolet at least. A range of individually cheap options would also help, such as a vehicle start-stop system using the BAS, but not the hybrid system as an option on all models. Offer the 2.0 Turbo DI in midsize cars to maximize fuel economy, and even offer it in the rwd Impala as the Eco choice. With 260 hp and better economy than the 2.4 HO, what's not to like?

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I agree with the above argument for the mid and full size card segments, but the point about the Corolla is well taken. The Aveo/Optra should get better gas mileage than they do, both on paper and in the real world. The Cobalt actually gets decent mileage in the real world, which closed the gap with the Corolla, but the Corolla/Civic still look better on paper.

In the small car segment and the so-called hybrid segment appearances are EVERYTHING. People want to feel warm and fuzzy about themselves.

Of course, the people who are actually doing something for the environment are taking the bus or bicycle to work..............

Your point about "paper" is quite correct. ToyMotor does a nice job of optimizing their results for EPA testing. GM could learn a trick or two there. I just can't accept or believe ToyMotor's engineering team is better than GM. Does that make any sense? Engineers are usually very competitive and I just don't see it.

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I agree with the above argument for the mid and full size card segments, but the point about the Corolla is well taken. The Aveo/Optra should get better gas mileage than they do, both on paper and in the real world. The Cobalt actually gets decent mileage in the real world, which closed the gap with the Corolla, but the Corolla/Civic still look better on paper.

In the small car segment and the so-called hybrid segment appearances are EVERYTHING. People want to feel warm and fuzzy about themselves.

Of course, the people who are actually doing something for the environment are taking the bus or bicycle to work..............

Don't forget the train. Whether it uses electrical power or diesel-electric, commuter trains are an efficient, convenient alternative to driving. New Mexico's RailRunner even uses B20 Biodiesel. Last year more than 20 million passengers commuted to work by train in California alone, and unlike driving, on the train you can use your cellphone, laptop, read a book or newspaper and even sleep (as many people do, both to and from work). Unlike Sydney rail travel in most US cities is in my experience reliable, comfortable and dirt cheap. In many cities hopping on a train is free in downtown areas were parking in particular can be impossible to find.
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Oh, I meant real-world and its the 3800. One of the cleanest V6s on the market, too. Look it up.

urban markets in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago etc are real world markets where 4 cyl engines like those in the Civic and Corolla are successful thanks to their great efficiency in city driving, which for those of us who live in these markets is real world driving.

The Corolla is a huge success story all unto itself, despite what many on this site deride as sluggish performance, its roominess, compact exterior size, decent quality interior trim, low price, legendary reliability, and isolated/comfortable ride/handling are a product success story GM and the rest of the Americans fail to grasp. As everyday transportation, the only real thing it lacks is a little more potency [see Civic] and more emotional appeal [see Civic].

The lack of a real high mileage engine in the Crapeo [to take a cue from the derisions on this site of Japanese cars] and a stand out design do no justice to the Chevy brand. Rename Aveo the Nova [one of the only instances I would recommend a name change since Aveo just sounds cheap, anonymous, and feminine] give it a great wrapper, keep the interior high quality, and give it a good powertrain combo.

Edited by turbo200
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Well, Turbo, I hate to burst your acid-induced bubble but I drive the Corollas and Cobalts nearly every day and there is no competition: the Cobalt bitch slaps the Corolla in handling, performance and ride. I am comparing the most popular lower models. I will credit the base Corolla (particuarly the cloth seats) as being somewhat nicer to look at inside, but the 1.8 is awful, unless coupled with the manual shift and since in the real world most vehicles are equipped with the automatic, that is all that is important. Cowl shake in a moder car is unacceptable and I have witnessed that in the new Corolla on uneven pavement (and, boy, do we have a lot of that around here this time of year!)

I have not ONCE had a customer choose the Corolla over the Cobalt when I have marched them over to our sister Toyota store and drove them in it in a head to head comparison, coupled, of course, with the necessary antidote to the daily BS and crap that CR and others print. Throw in the fact that (in this market) the Corolla is $1,800 more in an apple to apple comparison price and I would say the Cobalt is a damned bargain.

The Civic is probably on the other end of the scale: for another $1,800 over the Corolla I would grant that it is superior (in many respects) to both vehicles, but PRICE does matter in this segment. The Civic's sales are DOWN 20% so far this year in Canada, largely due to increased incentives on both the Cobalt and Mazda 3, but also because the arrogance over at the Honda dealers is beggining to grate on some people's nerves.

I realize the Corolla is the oldest in this segment, but it has become an embarassment. The only reason it sells, IMO, is the drug haze spewed out from the crap over at CR and others. The Mazda 3 and Civic are much more worthy contenders in this segment. I don't think any of those three (Civic, Cobalt, 3) are bad vehicles - they all do different things very wel.

The Corolla only exists so that BMW-driving spawn can protect their inheritances by badgering their elderly parents into buying one.

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Rename Aveo the Nova [one of the only instances I would recommend a name change since Aveo just sounds cheap, anonymous, and feminine]

I thought every one decided that Nova meant no go in Spanish - a large and growing part of the customer base. I think that you are correct about the power train. The Griffon has detailed what seems like a dizzying array of smaller Ectoec engines and engine families.

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The Mazda 3 is the class of the small car segment, followed by the Cobalt and perhaps the Civic and the Rabbit. What G.M. needs to do is market the Cobalt. I've yet to meet an unhappy Cobalt owner. We just need to get Cobalts into peoples hands.

Chris

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The Mazda 3 is the class of the small car segment, followed by the Cobalt and perhaps the Civic and the Rabbit. What G.M. needs to do is market the Cobalt. I've yet to meet an unhappy Cobalt owner. We just need to get Cobalts into peoples hands.

Chris

OK - I'll buy one and let you know.

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I have gotten a Cobalt a few times while the Equinox was in the shop and I must say it is such an improvement over the Cavalier that it isnt even measurable. Cant compare to a Corolla because I havent driven one but it is nice. A little small for my taste but I will give credit where credit is due. It rides like a larger car and the engine is as quiet as a lot of larger cars.

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I guess replacing thew 3800 with a new production site for the 3.6 dual-VVT shows GM doesn't care huh? Oh, and I see the 3.6 gets better mileage than the 3800 in the LaCrosse too.

when my 3800 was making enough power to push, well pull, my GP into the 12's, my mileage dropped to 28-30 on the highway. but, it was running a bit rich so i didnt mind.

my aura has achieved its 29mpg rating but once in its 7k miles (29.1). that was at 85mph in 65 and 70mph zones rushing home to STL from nashville, an event unlikely to be repeated.

i like my 3.6. its fine, does its job. nice and smooth in the upper RPMS where it will spend 1% of its life operating. it replacing the 3.8 shows GM cares about image, not necessarily performance. vital today, i know, but the 3.6 isnt the clear winner over the 3800 to me.

i just dont understand why the L32 couldnt be used as a base engine for full size trucks or as an option for NG small pickups. the output of the 3800 was only limited by the transaxle behind, well next to and under, it. reliably producing 280-300hp and 300+tq is nothing for the 3800. sure the SC adds some cost to the engine, but i bet the extra production for use in trucks and the higher profit margin of the truck side of the business would offset much of that. more power, more torque, more mileage.

in todays world, i guess, pushrods have no place in family cars. but, i see no reason to kill the 3800 when its virtues exceed the 4300 and 4800.

Edited by Bizz
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I agree with you Griff: The turbo DI-2.0 appears to be a very sweet motor - long on both hp and mileage. It needs more applications than the Solstice & Sky, IMO. An even smaller displacement (1.6l?) with a similar setup would be even more appealing: 200-210hp with even better gas mileage. Mate it with a stick and bolt it into an Astra -- that'd be a fun combo platter -> all with excellent gas mileage.

As for gas mileage, GM is losing the publicity war. GM needs to get something more economical into the Cobalt and especially the Aveo. There's no reason the Aveo shouldn't get at least 40+mpg on the freeway. GM's got small displacement 4-bangers all-over Europe. How about bringing something stateside? I know it's not quite that simple -- but if GM is serious about changing public perception, then the job's gotta get done.

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