The UAW VEBA fund has named auto consultant and former auto analyst Steve Girsky to the board of General Motors. It's an appointment that should be applauded at GM, in Detroit, and on Wall Street.
Could it be we Americans are ready to take a new look at the Big 3? A couple of data points coming out this week show good news for GM and Chrysler, and by extension of being a domestic auto maker, for Ford as well.
It is an idea that has been floating around Detroit among those in the auto industry. Should General Motors change its name? When I first heard this question, I chuckled and thought, "Would it really be wise to throw out a well known name after 100 mostly successful years?"
The bill would give people a voucher for $3,500 to $4,500 if they turn in their old car or truck for new fuel efficient model built in North America. On paper it sounds good. In reality, the number of people who may actually benefit from this program could be extremely limited.
Ford CEO Alan Mulally has been saying it ever since he took over the blue oval. Ford Chairman Bill Ford Jr. has been backing the idea for just as long. Now we'll see if the company that got a lot of Americans hooked on SUVs (and made billions of dollars in the process) can be successful with fuel efficient cars and crossovers.
This one is for Wally Griffith. Wally was the executive producer of the "Saving GM" and "Saving GM: Inside the Crisis" documentaries. He would ask the same question time and again: Why does GM own Saab?
I can already hear the groans from fans of micro cars and the chortling from those who think the public is nuts to be excited over sub-compact cars.
Within an hour of signing the papers officially creating a new Chrysler that is out of bankruptcy and in an alliance with Fiat, Marchionne sent an e-mail to Chrysler employees.
Forty days. In the world of corporate bankruptcies, I guess you could call that a quick rinse. Now that Chrysler's balance sheet has been cleaned up (thanks in large part to billions in Federal financing), the auto maker is primed for life with Fiat.
With the Supreme Court on the cusp of deciding whether to approve or block the sale of Chrysler, the restructuring of GM's board of directors is a story that may be overlooked. That would be a mistake. The new GM board faces one of the largest challenges ever in American business.
If you've read this blog for some time you've heard me say the easiest part of GM's bankruptcy will be filing the motions to cut dealers, shed plants, erase liabilities. And as always, don't take my use of the term "easy" to mean there is not a lot of pain that goes hand in hand with severing ties with thousands of people who have been part of the GM family for decades. There is plenty of pain.
Whenever I tell people that Saturn has been a neglected, and potentially highly profitable jewel in the GM family of brands, people look at me like I've got three heads.
In an opening statement before questioning GM CEO Fritz Henderson and Chrysler President Jim Press, Sen. Haynes said, "The deal is done." It was a painfully succinct summary of why thousands of auto dealers upset about losing their affiliations with GM and Chrysler are unlikely to find relief in Washington.
Today on Capitol Hill, the Senate Commerce Committee will question GM CEO Fritz Henderson and Chrysler President Jim Press about their moves to close roughly 2000 dealerships. For all the importance that comes with a Congressional hearing, don't expect much to change after this one.
General Motors filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday and all eyes are on the U.S. government's 60 percent equity stake in the auto maker. What does this bode for the stock market? Art Cashin, UBS Financial Services director of floor operations, offered CNBC his insights.
John Wolkonowicz, senior analyst at IHS Global Insight, and Alex Taylor, senior editor at Fortune Magazine, discussed the General Motors’ bankruptcy and the future of the automobile industry.
Somewhere Walter P. Chrysler and Alfred Sloan are shaking their heads. The men who left an indelible impression on the American auto industry must be watching what will happen today and wonder, "do these guys really have a shot at making it?"
After five months and $19.4 Billion in federal aid, three restructuring plans, and the removal of one CEO, General Motors is locked, loaded, and ready to file for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection on Monday.
It's never a wise thing to predict a smooth bankruptcy. Especially when you you are dealing with a company as large, as complex, and as loaded down with debt as General Motors.
Remember the first time you went into a dealership to buy a new car because you truly felt you could afford a new car loan? Remember the sticker shock when you ran the numbers and said to yourself, "I didn't really think it would that much." Now you know how many people feel when they see it might take $50 Billion to fix GM.