ellives

On Route of Chevrolet Impala

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ellives    0

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/03/business...ss/03chevy.html

June 3, 2006

On Route of Chevrolet Impala, Signposts to Detroit's Decline

By MICHELINE MAYNARD

DETROIT, June 2 — To understand why Detroit is having so much trouble competing against Asian car companies, look no further than the Chevrolet Impala.

In the 1960's, the Impala was king of the road. General Motors sold more than a million of them in 1965. Now the Impala is still the best-selling American car, but it is selling less than a third of that total.

The Impala also lags behind four Japanese offerings — the Toyota Camry and Corolla, and the Honda Accord and Civic — in the annual race to be the best-selling car in America.

But Chevrolet, by its own admission, has no plans to try to win back the bragging rights anytime soon.

The reason is that G.M. prefers to stick with its decades-old approach of breadth over depth, buckshot over a silver bullet. So rather than placing an all-or-nothing bet on a single car at one division, it sells family cars through a variety of brands, including Chevrolet, Buick, Pontiac and Saturn.

"We're able to get at more people because we've got locations that sell all these vehicles," said Chevrolet's general manager, Edward J. Peper Jr.

That idea served G.M. well when it sold more than half of all new cars and trucks back in the 1960's. But now G.M. controls less than a quarter of American sales.

And in today's ruthlessly competitive market, that strategy means that no single G.M. car will get the same amount of resources — engineering, design and marketing — as Toyota and Honda devote to their best sellers.

The Impala "comes across as the best that the American companies can do," said Brian Moody, a road test editor at Edmunds. com, a Web site that offers buying advice to consumers. "In a vacuum, it's hard to find anything wrong with it. And then you drive the Camry and the Accord."

The strength of those two cars is a reason Asian auto companies took a record 40 percent of the American market in May, when Detroit's market share fell to its second-lowest level in history, less than 53 percent.

To be sure, G.M. and Ford vastly outsell their Japanese competitors in pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles: the two markets where they have put most of their resources for the last decade and a half.

Moreover, G.M. executives say they are thrilled with the newest version of the Impala, which went on sale last year to good reviews and initially high quality ratings. And while sales at G.M. have dropped 8 percent this year, Impala sales are up 6.4 percent this year over 2005.

Impala can go head to head with Japanese cars in several ways, and price is among them. Like them, Impala sells for about $20,000 to $27,000. The Accord, Camry and Impala are on the list of recommended vehicles of Consumer Reports. And the Impala, like the Camry and Accord, has loyal buyers: some 45 percent of its buyers come back for a second one, according to Chevrolet.

The similarities largely end there, however, and the differences among the cars are marked. The main one is Impala's place in the G.M. lineup. It is part of a flock of family sedans at the automaker. In fact, it is not even the only family car at Chevrolet, which also sells the Malibu.

By contrast, Camry is Toyota's brightest star. Camry is "the center of the target," said James Press, who was recently named president of Toyota Motor North America.

Getting the latest Camry ready for its introduction this April was akin to a space launching for Toyota, which is building Camrys in eight markets around the world, including China, where production began last week.

It corralled engineers from the United States and Japan, and manufacturing experts from all the places it builds Camrys. They worked on ways to improve the car up to the time it started rolling off the assembly line.

The last American company to focus that kind of effort on a family car was Ford, which famously put together a team in the 1980's to develop the Taurus. Even back then, the goal was to beat the Accord and the Camry, and they did so, taking the best-selling title for a number of years until 1997, when Camry captured it. It has ceded the title only once since, to Accord.

Toyota's win coincided with Ford's shift of resources to focus on pickups and S.U.V.'s. Even though Ford now has its own flock of family cars, including the Ford Fusion, it does not plan to build enough of any one model to fight Camry and Accord.

Nor does Chevrolet. In 2006, it expects to make about 275,000 Impalas at a plant in Oshawa, Ontario, the only one where the Impala is built.

That leaves it well shy of Toyota, which sold more than 400,000 Camrys in 2005. For the American market, Toyota builds Camrys in Georgetown, Ky., and it imports more from Japan and soon will be able to build another 100,000 a year when it begins production in 2007 at Subaru's plant in Lafayette, Ind. Toyota holds a stake in Subaru's parent company.

With more than two million Camrys on the road, the name "has become almost a household word," said Tom Libby, an industry analyst with J. D. Power & Associates.

Yet, the Impala was an even bigger household name back when Toyota was barely a blip on the radar. Since 1958, the year after Toyota first sold cars here, Chevrolet has sold more than 14 million Impalas, making it one of the most recognizable cars in automotive history.

But unlike Camry, which has been sold continuously in the United States since 1982, always aimed at the family market, G.M. stopped selling the Impala for two stretches in the 1980's and 1990's. From its roots as a fast, chrome-laden car with six taillights, the Impala grew in size, then shrank and, in the eyes of critics, became generic.

Like many other G.M. models, it is sold to rental car companies, government agencies and corporations, markets where Toyota generally does much less business. The Impala is also a police car, bought by, among others, the New York Police Department. About 20 percent of the Impalas go to so-called fleet sales, down from almost half last year (about 10 percent of Camrys are sold to fleets).

Chevrolet is trying to veer away from the bulk sales and sell more to consumers. One goal with the new Impala, said its marketing manager, Mark A. Clawson, is to put features on the car that Toyota does not offer.

For example, the top-of-the-line SS version can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 5.7 seconds, thanks to a zippy V-8 engine with 303 horsepower.

Camry does not offer a V-8, but it has options Impala does not — namely, a manual transmission and four-cylinder engine, both available on its basic and midlevel cars. With gas prices staying high, both those features increasingly are in demand as buyers switch from bigger vehicles, especially S.U.V.'s, to cars.

But buyers who like the roominess of an S.U.V. may be pleased with another Impala feature. Inside the Impala SS, there are fold-flat rear seats, like those in minivans and S.U.V.'s, creating a vast storage space that most sedans cannot match. There are other options, too, like a jack for an MP3 player, a Bose stereo system and satellite radio.

On the outside, Impala looks conservative — a criticism that used to be leveled at Camry before its latest redesign, which created a curvy car with a light, nimble feel.

Unlike Toyota, which was aiming this time out for a more eye-catching car, Chevrolet deliberately tried not to make a style statement with Impala, Mr. Clawson said.

"We weren't looking for a vehicle that would turn heads, but we weren't looking for one that would turn heads away either," Mr. Clawson said. "We were looking for a balance," a car that was "nicely styled but not ostentatious."

That approach, Mr. Moody of Edmunds.com said, seemed reasonable given the relatively bland appearance of the previous Camry and Accord models. But it now seems unwise given what Toyota has done with the latest Camry, which "so far exceeds the previous car that it almost seems like it's not a Camry," he said, but rather a Lexus luxury car. The Accord, already more eye-catching, gets another face-lift this fall.

Chevrolet has put more emphasis this year on marketing its new S.U.V.'s, especially the Chevrolet Tahoe, and its new line of pickup trucks. It is only now beginning to promote cars like the Impala that it maintains get better fuel economy than its Japanese rivals.

"The American companies spent so much time focusing on trucks and S.U.V.'s that they neglected their cars," Mr. Moody said. "Now they're just playing catch-up."

Even so, Chevrolet dealers, for their part, seem happy with the Impala. Sales of the latest version are up 20 percent at Genoa Chevrolet outside Toledo, Ohio, said Mike Pauley, the dealership's executive manager.

In past years, many of Mr. Pauley's customers chose the Impala largely because of G.M.'s deep discounts, or because they wanted an American-made sedan. But the new version, which carries a modest $500 rebate, has attracted buyers more on its own merits, he said.

One recent customer was Gary McKeel, a retired salesman from Perrysburg, Ohio, who switched to the Impala after owning Buicks for the last 17 years. "It's spacious and it rides very nice," Mr. McKeel said.

But down the road, Impala may not be such a great deal. According to Edmunds.com, a typical Impala owner will spend 11.3 percent more, or about $4,300, on the car over five years than the owner of a typical Camry, mainly because the car loses its value faster and has higher repair costs. That figure takes into account the $500 rebate that Chevrolet is offering on Impala versus none on the Camry.

Mr. Libby of J. D. Power said he did not rule out Detroit's taking the car crown again. This Impala will not be the one, however, he said. Impala "has not had the strength, it has not had the equity of the Camry," he said.

Getting the title back will require another companywide effort like Ford made 20 years ago — the kind that Toyota and Honda routinely make when they introduce new versions of their bread-and-butter cars.

"To me, it's a step-by-step process," Mr. Libby said. "There are no shortcuts."

Nick Bunkley contributed reporting for this article.

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CARBIZ    1

Isn't she the hag that wrote the End of Detroit? I read about 40 pages of that book and threw it against the wall.

Why is so much made by the media of being the #1 selling car? "Turd" is a household word, too, but I wouldn't brag about that.

Y'know, back when the Impala sold a million vehicles in one year, the Pontiac could be argued to have been a better car. The Galaxy was all new, too. Who ever said the best car became #1? The '65 Polara was hot and faster, but sold 1/8 as many!

As a salesman, I would rather have the Malibu AND the Impala to show a customer. Over at our Toyota store, if someone takes an aversion (and there have already been a few!) to the new Camry, they are screwed. They will just lose the customer.

I would hope the with CAD and other tools, it would be far simpler and cheaper to platform share vehicles today than it was 40 years ago. Wouldn't efficiencies of scale help, so that the Impala, Allure and Grand Prix could all result in the same profit as the Camry, spread over 3 or 4 models?

Personally, I believe that eventually there will be a backlash against Toyota, and in particular because the Camry is everywhere. There are enough people out there who would not want to drive a car that everyone else on their street has.

The same thing will happen to BMW, too. The whole point of driving a BMW or Porsche is exclusivity, but when they become commonplace (as they are) people will begin looking elsewhere. In the late '60s, everyone who had money owned a Cadillac.

GM is trying to reinvent itself, and I have confidence that she will. Once a few more blemishes appear on Toyota's vaunted products, the media will turn on them like a pack of wolves, tearing Toyota to shreds just like it did to GM in the '80s when she got too arrogant.

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enzl    0

Isn't she the hag that wrote the End of Detroit?  I read about 40 pages of that book and threw it against the wall.

  Why is so much made by the media of being the #1 selling car?  "Turd" is a household word, too, but I wouldn't brag about that.

  Y'know, back when the Impala sold a million vehicles in one year, the Pontiac could be argued to have been a better car.  The Galaxy was all new, too.  Who ever said the best car became #1?  The '65 Polara was hot and faster, but sold 1/8 as many!

  As a salesman, I would rather have the Malibu AND the Impala to show a customer.  Over at our Toyota store, if someone takes an aversion (and there have already been a few!) to the new Camry, they are screwed.  They will just lose the customer.

  I would hope the with CAD and other tools, it would be far simpler and cheaper to platform share vehicles today than it was 40 years ago.  Wouldn't efficiencies of scale help, so that the Impala, Allure and Grand Prix could all result in the same profit as the Camry, spread over 3 or 4 models?

  Personally, I believe that eventually there will be a backlash against Toyota, and in particular because the Camry is everywhere.  There are enough people out there who would not want to drive a car that everyone else on their street has.

  The same thing will happen to BMW, too.  The whole point of driving a BMW or Porsche is exclusivity, but when they become commonplace (as they are) people will begin looking elsewhere.  In the late '60s, everyone who had money owned a Cadillac.

  GM is trying to reinvent itself, and I have confidence that she will.  Once a few more blemishes appear on Toyota's vaunted products, the media will turn on them like a pack of wolves, tearing Toyota to shreds just like it did to GM in the '80s when she got too arrogant.

I don't think the article is negative. Nor did Ms. Maynard argue that the Camry is the 'best' at anything (except selling!)....the significant portion of this article lies within the sections which describe the undertaking that an Accord or Camry's development is for its respective manufacturer....

Perhaps a mid-80's 'Taurus' type effort would be useful....Zeta's, anyone? We can only hope. The need to subtly or overtly differentiate product that sits on the same platform diminishes the $ available to hone its basic goodness...this is compounded by the fractured costs of marketing these various entries, which either requires separate, smaller budgets or the division of a larger budget with separate messages. While many would argue that GM's divisional approach gives consumers' choices, it also means the products are natural competitors and there's no incremental gain against the competition.

Edited by enzl

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Shantanu    0

Meh who cares about the NY Times. This is the same paper that a few days ago called for Toyota to take over GM, in the name of the safety of the American people. :huh:

Edited by Shantanu

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ocnblu    733
This could be seen as playing in to the hype and promise of the Zeta Impala, which, from all accounts so far, will be a breakout car for Chevrolet.

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Camry does not offer a V-8, but it has options Impala does not — namely, a manual transmission and four-cylinder engine, both available on its basic and midlevel cars. With gas prices staying high, both those features increasingly are in demand as buyers switch from bigger vehicles, especially S.U.V.'s, to cars.

Funny, I wonder how many manual Camrys are sold compared to V-8 Impalas? Almost no one wants a manual, especially in a family car. Also, I love when the press reports what's "available" on a car (like manual Camrys). But when you visit the dealer the option is a phantom.

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But down the road, Impala may not be such a great deal. According to Edmunds.com, a typical Impala owner will spend 11.3 percent more, or about $4,300, on the car over five years than the owner of a typical Camry, mainly because the car loses its value faster and has higher repair costs. That figure takes into account the $500 rebate that Chevrolet is offering on Impala versus none on the Camry.

Not sure what figures she's using. According to Edmunds, a $23,000 TMV Impala LT 3.9 has a very similar True Cost to Own calculation as a $22,000 TMV Camry LE V-6: $47,911 (Camry) versus $47,994 (Impala) over 5 years.

Sure, the Impala will cost $2,169 more in depreciation and $159 more in repairs (but less than the $4,600 Maynard quotes - she must have been comparing the Impala V-8 to the manual 4 cyl Camry again???). But the Camry will cost $2,829 more for insurance and $905 more in maintenance!

Check it out:

http://www.edmunds.com/new/2007/toyota/cam...p=91335&vdp=off

http://www.edmunds.com/new/2006/chevrolet/...p=91335&vdp=off

Bottom line, the NY Times once again proves what ignoramuses they are. Buy what you like and forget the "experts."

Edited by buyacargetacheck

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Cadillacfan    0

This could be seen as playing in to the hype and promise of the Zeta Impala, which, from all accounts so far, will be a breakout car for Chevrolet.

I'm waiting for the day when they start complaining about the Zeta Impala before it even hits showrooms. I am serious. Just you wait and see. They will find something wrong with it.

The Editor in Chief at The New York Times must really be in his "Destroy GM" mode to print a commentary calling for GM's demise and a biased auto review that finds more problems with the company and all in the same week! If I did not see that this was a NYT article, I could have sworn that I was reading a Toyota Camry advertisement.

The Impala has a lot of problems but the article doesn’t emphasizes how far the car has improved from the last generation or that it will be moving to an all new RWD/AWD platform by the end of the decade to set it apart further from the Malibu.

Instead, we hear about how GM was focusing too much on SUVs (EVIL!!!) and trucks (REALLY EVIL!) and ignoring the fact that Toyota is starting to do the exact same thing.

Of course I’m exaggerating but I’m sure I’m not to far from the truth.

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haypops    0

Funny, I wonder how many manual Camrys are sold compared to V-8 Impalas?  Almost no one wants a manual, especially in a family car.  Also, I love when the press reports what's "available" on a car (like manual Camrys).  But when you visit the dealer the option is a phantom.

My son in law #2 has a black camry with manual transmission. Not a particularily pleasant car.

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sciguy_0504    0

The Impala has a lot of problems but the article doesn’t emphasizes how far the car has improved from the last generation or that it will be moving to an all new RWD/AWD platform by the end of the decade to set it apart further from the Malibu.

Instead, we hear about how GM was focusing too much on SUVs (EVIL!!!) and trucks (REALLY EVIL!) and ignoring the fact that Toyota is starting to do the exact same thing.

The Impala is greatly improved over the past-gen but I do not think that was supposed to be the article's topic, or at least the main topic. GM has been focusing too much on SUVs and trucks since last decade and its cars show it. Toyota is starting to do the exact same thing but on a much smaller scale. Its cars also sell well and make money so it can get away with it from a business standpoint.

Even though I hate the NYT, I think this article hit the target.

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evok    0

Even though I hate the NYT, I think this article hit the target.

Yes agreed - It mirrors my sentiments in the GM May sales thread.

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loki    289

I'm waiting for the day when they start complaining about the Zeta Impala before it even hits showrooms.  I am serious.  Just you wait and see.  They will find something wrong with it.

The Editor in Chief at The New York Times must really be in his "Destroy GM" mode to print a commentary calling for GM's demise and a biased auto review that finds more problems with the company and all in the same week!  If I did not see that this was a NYT article, I could have sworn that I was reading a Toyota Camry advertisement.

The Impala has a lot of problems but the article doesn’t emphasizes how far the car has improved from the last generation or that it will be moving to an all new RWD/AWD platform by the end of the decade to set it apart further from the Malibu.

Instead, we hear about how GM was focusing too much on SUVs (EVIL!!!) and trucks (REALLY EVIL!) and ignoring the fact that Toyota is starting to do the exact same thing.

Of course I’m exaggerating but I’m sure I’m not to far from the truth.

be interesting if they never announced a new model (or showed anyone, be it GM or TOYota) until it hit the lots...wonder what the reaction would be in the press, let alone the public...

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ellives    0

I think the issue of focus on singleness of purpose is a key thing. The consumer is much more sophisticated in some ways and the same in so many others. GM needs to focus like a laser on building great products in all segments or just exit those segments. I personally don't see value in maintaining all the brands without doing some serious work on establishing differentiation and explaining it to the consumer.

I don't think the article is negative. Nor did Ms. Maynard argue that the Camry is the 'best' at anything (except selling!)....the significant portion of this article lies within the sections which describe the undertaking that an Accord or Camry's development is for its respective manufacturer....

Perhaps a mid-80's 'Taurus' type effort would be useful....Zeta's, anyone? We can only hope. The need to subtly or overtly differentiate product that sits on the same platform diminishes the $ available to hone its basic goodness...this is compounded by the fractured costs of marketing these various entries, which either requires separate, smaller budgets or the division of a larger budget with separate messages. While many would argue that GM's divisional approach gives consumers' choices, it also means the products are natural competitors and there's no incremental gain against the competition.

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balthazar    1,882

Oh.

Michele Maynard.

sigh

>>"General Motors sold more than a million {Impalas} in 1965. Now the Impala... is selling less than a third of that total.

The reason is that G.M. prefers to stick with its decades-old approach of breadth over depth, buckshot over a silver bullet. So rather than placing an all-or-nothing bet on a single car at one division...

That idea served G.M. well when it sold more than half of all new cars and trucks back in the 1960's."<<

What she and every other mainstream automotive 'journalist' fail to bother to research is that '65's million-plus Impalas was NOT the result of a "silver bullet" approach either. The Impy was not a 700,000-unit better car than the near 300K '65 Catalinas sold, nor the near 300K J'65 etstar/Dynamic 88s sold, nor the over 200K '65 LeSabre/Wildcats sold. There were far more consumers in the entry-level price bracket then than now. Her analysis here is completely invalid. I know: shocking. :rolleyes:

>>"Like many other G.M. models, {Impala} is sold to rental car companies, government agencies and corporations, markets where Toyota generally does much less business."<<

I wouldn't call a circa 12,000-unit difference across the country "much less". I would also want to look at the respective fleet volume trends for these 2 models...

>>"The American companies spent so much time focusing on trucks and S.U.V.'s that they neglected their cars..."<<

And the japanese companies spent so much time focusing on cars that they neglected their trucks, all the while the truck market was climbing to over 50% of the market.

You've never seen that fact in print (other than from me).

ellives= >>"I personally don't see value in maintaining all the brands without doing some serious work on establishing differentiation..."<<

That's it in a nutshell. Re-empower Division General Managers and re-establish Divisional Engineering Departments. It was critical to successes in the '60s and it can be key to future prosperity.

Edited by balthazar

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evok    0

>>"The American companies spent so much time focusing on trucks and S.U.V.'s that they neglected their cars..."<<

And the japanese companies spent so much time focusing on cars that they neglected their trucks, all the while the truck market was climbing to over 50% of the market.

You've never seen that fact in print (other than from me).

But your are wrong. You personally might not call, what the transplants invested in, as trucks. But Pilots, CRV,etc have added hundres of thousands to the bottom line in sales.

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Variety is the spice of life you d@uchebag.

Killing off divisions is NOT the answer, financially or othewrwise.

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buickguy    0

The Impalas of 2006 are a far cry from those of the 60s. Back then Chevy offered an Impala, coupe, and wagon in addition to the sedan. Now? Only the sedan. A few years ago, GM ran a commercial showing an Impala Super Sports Sedan parked next to a 64 Impala convertible, and said the SS is back. No it wasn't!

Also, the colors offered on today's Impalas are the same offered everywhere. There is no excitement.

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Guest YellowJacket894   
Guest YellowJacket894

The Impalas of 2006 are a far cry from those of the 60s. Back then Chevy offered an Impala, coupe, and wagon in addition to the sedan.  Now?  Only the sedan.  A few years ago, GM ran a commercial showing an Impala Super Sports Sedan parked next to a 64 Impala convertible, and said the SS is back.  No it wasn't!

Also, the colors offered on today's Impalas are the same offered everywhere.  There is no excitement.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

:huh: Uh, buddy, I think your assessment of the SS line is incorrect.

SS wasn't about making a hot rod. Really, it wasn't. It was just another trim package that, at first, included mainly leather trim and bucket seats for an extra $50 bucks burning a hole in your Levi's. In theory, when SS was first introduced, you could buy a six-banger Impala -- or even Nomad -- SS. And there was more than one color, too.

It wasn't until the late '60s and early '70s SS became a badge glorified by high-performance and an fat-ass displacement motor.

Chevy, with the current Impala SS, is trying to recapture the concept of the '90s model. The 1994 - 1996 Impala SS was just a Caprice with a new grille, rims, a Corvette-derived V8, and a few badges -- basically a sleeper. It was only available in black at first, but later on you could buy one in a color I think was called "Dark Cherry Red."

Edited by YellowJacket894

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ellives    0

Variety is the spice of life you d@uchebag.

Killing off divisions is NOT the answer, financially or othewrwise.

Who, prey tell, are you addressing with these comments?

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Cadavillac    0

Chevy, with the current Impala SS, is trying to recapture the concept of the '90s model. The 1994 - 1996 Impala SS was just a Caprice with a new grille, rims, a Corvette-derived V8, and a few badges -- basically a sleeper. It was only available in black at first, but later on you could buy one in a color I think was called "Dark Cherry Red."

A total of 69,678 were produced throughout the 1994-1996 model years. Onyx Black was the only color offered in 1994, but Dark Cherry and Dark Gray Green were available in 1995 and 1996. 1996 saw the availability of a console mounted shifter and analog tachometer, as well.

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regfootball    234

Variety is the spice of life you d@uchebag.

Killing off divisions is NOT the answer, financially or othewrwise.

panther, you're far too kind to Ms. Maynard. The word to describe her that is more appropriate starts with a C and ends with an NT, and has another vowel inbetween them.

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Guest YellowJacket894   
Guest YellowJacket894

panther, you're far too kind to Ms. Maynard.  The word to describe her that is more appropriate starts with a C and ends with an NT, and has another vowel inbetween them.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

...Now -- I'm just guessing here -- is a vowel an a, e, i, or u?

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regfootball    234

hey Ms. C. Maynard.......if GM selling ONLY 275,000 Impalas this year is SUCH a frickin problem, then why on my 600 mile trip this weekend did i see COUNTLESS new 06 Impalas, all types, LT's, LTZ's even a couple SS?  I saw two new 07 Camrys.  As a matter of fact, I saw an equivalent of your DOUCHEBAG full of Camry's this weekend....and guess what, NO LIE, all the frickin Toyotas I saw this weekend were being drivin by OLD ASS HELL FARTS.....no one under 50 for sure.  I parked next to a couple of blue hairs at a rest stop.  I was surprised either of them could drive, they were so old.  My God, Toyota is becoming a brand for geriatrics and whiners only.  Liberal pansies with no capacity to think for themselves, much less hit the toilet with accuracy when they pee, IF THEY CAN PEE.  News flash, TOYOTA has become the poster brand for folks who have no ability to think for themselves.  They are the only ones selling cars to this ever growing group of followers and do-nothings.......meanwhile, all the other brands divvy up sales of all the others folks in the country.

Miss C. Maynard, there are a few points of interest in there you ought to re-read and get into your deaf skull.  First off 45 percent repeat buyers....whoa!  when is that a problem?

To be sure, G.M. and Ford vastly outsell their Japanese competitors in pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles: the two markets where they have put most of their resources for the last decade and a half.

Wow, 15 years of dominance in a very profitable market segment. and they should YIELD THIS?

Impala selling 20% fleet and Camry 10%...first off, that's an alarming number for Camry..I've never seen it quoted that high although we all know Toyo has been quietly dumping cars into fleets for awhile degrading their value.....but 20% of 275,000 isn't really that much more than 10% of 400,000+.

Impala sales are up 6.4%.

and what is wrong with GM tackling the market with many models? If the hardware is improved to top notch status and each variation is executed properly and serves different buyers' needs? Maybe is a BETTER way of serving the market you DOUCHEBAG. At some point you cannot sell the same car to everybody and Toyota will hit that soon. Hyundai and Kia will hone in the Camry segment and what is Toyota left with? GM's problem has never been doing it right because they are run by beancounting idiots who seek to do their best at shortchanging the public, but someday this will get fixed. When that day comes, then Toyota will get crushed.

I was reading my Car and Drivel this weekend and their Camry 2.4SE review. I find it curious the idiot engineers at Toyota would have to sacrifice a folding rear seat in return for adequately stiffening the car's chassis for anything besiedes geriatric duty. SAD. To top it off, their SE model with manual transmission is not available in the 6 cylinder which is what an enthusiast would want....only the wheezing 4.

NICE JOB. To top it off, the Camry styling is dull and derivitive. Not just bland. The new Impala is sharp and tidy if boring. But still its a nicer design and judging by my sales eye, the Impala is flying off the floor.

If every GM division had an Impala in the showroom, this b-tch would by lying in bed sucking her thumb because she'd have no lame ass 'journalist' job to sit and write about this crap. An article about selling 275,000 cars but yet using it as an opportunity to take a jab at GM. What a misguided hoor.

Edited by regfootball

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