US Automakers Coming on Strong Against Overseas Competitors
CNBC Auto and Airline Industry Reporter
Walk around the Detroit Auto Show and one thing stands out: America's automakers are coming on strong when it comes to cars.
Gone are the days when Detroit's cars lagged the sedans you saw from overseas.
: Big improvement on a car that was already holding it's own for Ford. Last year, Fusion sales were up 13 percent (industry car sales up 9 percent) as Ford sold nearly a quarter million.
The new Fusion is a step up across the board. Need proof: one Japanese auto exec told me, "The Fusion will take off when it hits showrooms."
The Dodge Dart: Finally, a reason from small car buyers to visit a Dodge showroom. It replaces the Caliber which epitomized the lean, forgettable years of Chrysler under its former owner.
Not only is this a small car that will compete with the best from Japan and South Korea, its starting price point of $16,000 makes it a great value.
Cadillac ATS: The baby Caddy addresses a huge gap for Cadillac. For years, as the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class racked up big sales, Cadillac tried to counter by saying the CTS was a worthy competitor.
Truth is, the CTS never quite could catch its German competitors. With demand for entry level luxury cars growing, the ATS not only fills a need for GM , it's solid entry.
Bottom line: Detroit has closed the gap (on most levels) with its foreign competitors when it comes to cars. These models will grow sales for their brands.