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Thread summary:

American ingenuity: mortgage, fuel efficient SUVs, loan, transportation, infrastructure.

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Old 06-23-2008, 08:48 PM
 
5,273 posts, read 12,803,084 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevK View Post
Ford and GM are the past and Toyota and Honda are the future of cars in America- and most of the world. The American car makers did it to themselves. They made a choice to bet the farm on monster SUVs and trucks and- for a decade- the bet worked. But now times are different. They can either change with the times or keep making cars people won't buy except at a "no profit" price.
Now can American ingenuity save us? It always has in the past but probably not this time. We do not have the "ingenuity" we used to have. We are dumbed down as a country. We could not even learn the metric system. The rest of the world has moved on. Most of our greatest inventors and scientist of the past - Saulk, Diesel, Edison and others like them were immigrants that came from places where they had no opportunity to the Land of Opportunity- America. But now the best and brightest do not need to come here. They have great opportunities at home- in China, India and other emerging superpowers. And that is where most of the ingenuity will come from in the future.
A couple of thoughts. I agree with your post, but also car manufacturers are slow to change due to the dynamics of it all. It isn't easy to completely retool a line. Also, the union interferes a lot, so it takes time. There is also the greed & feeling by US drivers to be all powerful on the road. I think that overall the auto manufacturers were giving the public what they demanded moreso than using marketing to create the demand.
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Old 06-23-2008, 09:36 PM
f_m
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BLAZER PROPHET View Post
I think that overall the auto manufacturers were giving the public what they demanded moreso than using marketing to create the demand.
I do agree somewhat, but the way US cars are marketed is different than imports. For example, GM had the Malibu, then didn't have the Malibu, then had it again (more or less, over a few decades, can't keep track). Ford had the Taurus, and then after bad sales, didn't have the Taurus, now the Taurus is back because of bad sales of the replacement model (500).

Meanwhile, Toyota has had the Camry and Honda the Accord with both models continuously being improved over 3 decades (these cars are always in the top 5 sales slots year after year). BMW has done the same with the 3 series over the same time period (it is the best selling car in its class).

If a US model does poorly, it is dropped and a new product with another name is brought out. The imports just keep plugging away, which improves their overall reputation in the long term.

Chrysler has done well with the 300, but now it has not followed up at all, and will likely loose whatever momentum it had (they are only doing minor redesigns for the upcoming models). Admittedly they haven't had the resources.
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Old 06-23-2008, 09:52 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,507 posts, read 51,078,069 times
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The old business model of horse teams pulling wagons once delivered all goods to their markets. That business model went away.

Today everything moves by petroleum. Which will go away.

Will it go away because we ran out? Will it go away because speculators ran up the price too much? Will it go away because a few armies will step-in and nationalize the oil fields and defend them? Who cares, it makes no difference.

In the long run petroleum will go away. This year, this decade, this century, it will go away.

Can ingenuity save us?

YES
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