Posts Tagged ‘GM’

Oh goody! More subsidies for the Volt UPDATED

Friday, March 9th, 2012

Government Motors to increase Chevy Volt subsidy from $7,500 to $10,000!

ReVolt: Obama wants you to pay even more for cars nobody wants

In a speech before the Daimler Trucks North America manufacturing plant in Charlotte, N.C. today, the president delivered his answer to rising gas prices: He wants to increase the $7,500 tax credit for alternative-energy vehicles to $10,000, earmark $1 billion to reward cities that provide infrastructure for such vehicles, earmark an additional $650 million for a research program to increase the range and decrease the price of the vehicles, and repeal $4 billion of tax incentives for oil and gas companies.

Are talking about the expensive car that goes up in flames?

The one whose manufacturer stopped production due to low demand?

The one getting over $256,000 in subsidies per vehicle?

Oh, yes.

Warms the cockles of your heart, doesn’t it?

UPDATE:
Via Instapundit: Volt for you, but not for Chu.


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Volt goes down in flames

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012

Volt production on hold for 5 weeks

General Motors has told 1,300 employees at its Detroit Hamtramck that they will be temporarily laid off for five weeks as the company halts production of the Chevrolet Volt and its European counterpart, the Opel Ampera.

“Even with sales up in February over January, we are still seeking to align our production with demand,” said GM spokesman Chris Lee.

“Seeking to align our production with demand” = nobody wants them so we can’t keep making them, in spite of the fact that the total amount of state and federal subsidies for each Chevy Volt sold is as much as $256,824 per vehicle.

Maybe Obama’s still on time to buy one, there must still be plenty of Volts on the dealers’ lots,

Related:
Coinkadink: Obama rips small oil companies for their $4B in tax relief, which is roughly the same amount he blew on the Chevy Volt

UPDATE
Barack Obama blew more money on the Chevy Volt than the entire annual GDP of Belize.


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Volt, the ad

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Via Denny.

Related: Auto bailout helped Obama’s friends, at taxpayers’ expense


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What would be the #3 worst product of the year? UPDATED: ALL VOLTS RECALLED

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Drumroll, please!

Yay! The Chevy Volt!

Yessss!
The bland little car that looks like every other forgettable little car in the parking lot, each costs $230,000 of taxpayer subsidies, and gives new meaning to burning rubber when it catches on fire.

Only Netflix’s Qwikster, and A&F’s push-up bra for little girls could top that, but, for my taxpayer bang-for-the-$230,000-bucks, the Volt is #1.

Government Motors: Wasting your money in the most hazardous way.

UPDATE
I left one out,
Obama gets two ‘awards’ for worst product failures of 2011

Obama’s second flop took sixth place.

The booby prize want to the Fiat 500 auto, which administration officials touted when they arranged for Fiat to buy the ailing Chrysler company.

“The car was expected to be a big seller, rivaling BMW’s Mini… [and] Fiat expected to sell 50,000 500s during 2011 in North America,” according to the Yahoo! Finance Top 7 list. However, “Fiat sold fewer than 12,000 [and] sales were so poor that Chrysler Group, which manages the Fiat brand in the United States, ousted U.S. chief Laura Soave this past November,” noted Yahoo.

UPDATE 2:
ALL VOLTS RECALLED!
Chevy Volts Called Back By GM For Battery Fixes

GM is making the repairs after three Volt batteries caught fire following crash tests done by federal safety regulators.

Fire hazard.

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Burning Volt, Batman!

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

The Car for Idiots strikes again, this time going down in flames… twice,
Chevrolet Volt Bursts in Flames. Twice

Strangely enough though, sources say that after the initial fire broke and was put out, the Volt caught fire again, this time, apparently, from where the battery is located.

The mystery is deepened by the fact that before the first fire, the Volt was plugged in, recharging over night (as was the Samurai); in the second fire, however, the plug-in hybrid (what was left of it) was not connected to a power source.

It’s not enough that the steering wheel falls off, it also self-combusts.

Ah, for the days when Ralph Nader was talking about vehicles “unsafe at any speed.” Now we have progressed to just plain unsafe.

Publius Forum has the The GM WeeKann, soon to be unveiled.

Meanwhile, the government is having a fire sale on GM,
U.S. Hurries to Sell GM Stake

A sale within the next several months would almost certainly mean U.S. taxpayers will take a loss on their $50 billion rescue of the Detroit auto maker in 2009.

To break even, the U.S. Treasury would need to sell its remaining stake—about 500 million shares—at $53 apiece. GM closed off 27 cents a share at $29.97 in 4 p.m. trading Monday on the New York Stock Exchange, hitting a new low since its $33-a-share November initial public offering.

At Monday’s price, and taking into account shares sold during the IPO, taxpayers would lose more than $11 billion on the rescue if the government dumped the rest of its stake now.

h/t Steve

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GM: $84 billion later, they come up with a car whose steering wheel falls off VIDEO

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011
Getty Images
General Motors is recalling certain Chevrolet Cruze compact cars to make sure their steering wheels were put on tightly.

Chevy Recalls Cruze After A Steering Wheel Falls Off

it happened to at least one driver of a 2011 Chevrolet Cruze compact car last month, and General Motors Corp. is recalling 2,100 of the cars as a result.

While the recall affects a relatively small number of vehicles, it is an unpleasant development for Chevrolet, which has been riding high on the success of its new small car. Chevrolet sold 50,205 Cruzes through the end of March. That’s well short of the 76,821 units Toyota sold of the Cruze’s main rival, the Corolla, but it is ahead of the 37,379 Cobalts Chevy sold in the same period. The Cruze replaced the Cobalt and is supposed to be a departure from that uninspired model.

In documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the car maker said it traced the problem with that particular car to a case in which the wrong wheel was put in a car and replaced later in the assembly process.

GM didn’t think of changing the production process to make sure the machine used to attach the steering wheel can accommodate only the correct one until after the wheel came off this vehicle. The WSJ post has over 700 comments, nearly all negative.

The Lonely Conservative quotes,

Recently GM’s Vice President of U.S. Sales Operations touted the Cruze saying: “Vehicles like the Chevrolet Cruze and Equinox put us in great position to benefit from consumer’s increasing desire for fuel-efficient vehicles.”

Fuel-efficient, but deadly, somewhat like those catalytic-converted Mexican trucks I was talking about today.

TLC has video of the car,

Unsafe at any speed, to use Nader’s words.

Via Memeorandum

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How green was my sludge

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

Low-water toilets make sludge back up public sewer pipes, as the people of San Francisco are finding out,
Low-flow toilets cause a stink in SF

San Francisco’s big push for low-flow toilets has turned into a multimillion-dollar plumbing stink.

Skimping on toilet water has resulted in more sludge backing up inside the sewer pipes, said Tyrone Jue, spokesman for the city Public Utilities Commission. That has created a rotten-egg stench near AT&T Park and elsewhere, especially during the dry summer months.

The city has already spent $100 million over the past five years to upgrade its sewer system and sewage plants, in part to combat the odor problem.

What to do about the stinking mess? Bleach it!

Now officials are stocking up on a $14 million, three-year supply of highly concentrated sodium hypochlorite – better known as bleach – to act as an odor eater and to disinfect the city’s treated water before it’s dumped into the bay. It will also be used to sanitize drinking water.

That translates into 8.5 million pounds of bleach either being poured down city drains or into the drinking water supply every year.

In other green news, Consumer Reports doesn’t like the Volt,
Consumer Reports: GM’s Volt ‘doesn’t really make a lot of sense’

Champion believes a hybrid, such as the Toyota Prius, may make more sense for some trips.
“If you drive about 70 miles, a Prius will actually get you more miles per gallon than the Volt does,” Champion said.
But GM has noted that most Americans can avoid using gasoline for most regular commuting with the Volt, while its gasoline engine can allow the freedom to travel farther, if needed.
The magazine has put about 2,500 miles on its Volt. It paid $48,700, including a $5,000 markup by a Chevy dealer.
Champion noted the Volt is about twice as expensive as a Prius.

And that’s only for the sticker price. Don’t forget about the government bailout.

Moving right along the green path, CFL bulbs don’t compare to incandescent ones when it comes to brightness and quality of light, but you probably noticed that already.

Now I can’t wait for the reports a few years from now talking about what measures will be necessary to abate the high levels of mercury from discarded compact fluorescent bulbs.

More on the Volt at Uncoverage,

Let’s review: We’ve had the report in which it has been determined the Chevrolet Volt will not be economically feasible in enviro-MENTAL-liberal-infested California due to electric rates and other factors, that most of the “Government Motors” Volts are being bought by government agencies not private persons, the Volt can electrocute passengers or rescue personnel in accidents, trying to recharge just a few of the Volts can overload a local power grid, and President Obama’s own task force questioned its viability.

Brought to you by Government Motors!

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How about the jobs killed or prevented?

Monday, July 19th, 2010

First, Ed’s post:
TARP audit claims Obama admin destroyed “tens of thousands” of jobs in dealer closures

Last year, while the Obama administration seized two of the nation’s three main domestic auto manufacturers, it also shut down thousands of dealerships across the country, supposedly to stabilize GM and Chrysler.  A new report from Neil Barofsky, the Inspector General of the TARP program, calls into question that decision.  In a sharp rebuke to the White House, Barofsky says that the action needlessly cost tens of thousands of jobs and extended an already-disastrous downturn in employment:

President Obama’s auto task force pressed General Motors and Chrysler to close scores of dealerships without adequately considering the jobs that would be lost or having a firm idea of the cost savings that would be achieved, an audit of the process has concluded.

The report by Neil M. Barofsky, the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program of the Treasury Department, said both carmakers needed to shut down some underperforming dealerships. But it questioned whether the cuts should have been made so quickly, particularly during a recession. The report, released on Sunday, estimated that tens of thousands of jobs were lost as a result.

“It is not at all clear that the greatly accelerated pace of the dealership closings during one of the most severe economic downturns in our nation’s history was either necessary for the sake of the companies’ economic survival or prudent for the sake of the nation’s economic recovery,” the report said.

Moe Lane gives you

The short version?  Having the government do your restructuring for you isn’t necessarily the brightest thing in the world.  Particularly when there’s a variety of conflicting objectives.  At least, if what you’re trying to do is actually create a better version of your company; if your goal is to use government fiat to streamline the operations of your newly government-owned automobile manufacturer it apparently works out just fine.

It’s all about incompetence; you mean to tell me that having two guys in charge whose entire automotive industry was driving a car, and being a union negotiator, wouldn’t work? Who’d have thunk it!

Speaking of jobs, Caroline Baum notes that Obama Omits Jobs Killed or Thwarted from Tally

“If the administration wants to take credit for ‘jobs created or saved,’ it should also accept responsibility for ’jobs destroyed or prevented,’” said Bill Dunkelberg, chief economist at the National Federation of Independent Business.

That would mean accepting responsibility, which they are not about to do.

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Michael Fumento talks about Toyota UPDATED

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

This morning’s podcast topic: The Toyota Prius story. Special guest Michael Fumento updates us.

UPDATE
Read Mike’s latest article in today’s Philadelphia Enquirer,
Toyota’s indispensable new role: Hobgoblin
The carmaker plays the villain while officials ignore a much greater danger – bad driving

Link also at his blog.

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Toyota accidents are the drivers’ fault

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

Early Tests Pin Toyota Accidents on Drivers

The U.S. Department of Transportation has analyzed dozens of data recorders from Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles involved in accidents blamed on sudden acceleration and found that the throttles were wide open and the brakes weren’t engaged at the time of the crash, people familiar with the findings said.

The early results suggest that some drivers who said their Toyotas and Lexuses surged out of control were mistakenly flooring the accelerator when they intended to jam on the brakes.

Mike Fumento has been saying as much for quite a while, along with Walter Olson,

Maybe it’s rude to say “I told you so,” but yes: I told you so, as did others including Ted Frank, Megan McArdle, Michael Fumento, and Ronald Bailey.

Mike’s also looking for a Volunteer for short but fun job regarding The Toyota Terror; also, Mike found the following,

I found eight vehicles in which 99 people died, two with 95, one with 90, one 88, and lots and lots above 10. None were involved in accidents, by the way. One with 10 reported deaths was entered 11 times, getting around the 99 death limit. One fellow who reported 95 deaths twice wrote: “I was shooting the engine with my M16 when it blew up. Why did this happen?”

But back to the WSJ article,

It is unknown how many data recorders NHTSA has read so far.

Or how the data was kept?

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