Wednesday, October 27, 2004
At least it's interesting to me. It's great to see the pre-eminent Internet-only Automobile voice write an article that totally agrees with many of the points I've been making these last few months. Autoextremist's rant for this week is magnificent. I usually don't agree with the politics of Peter DeLorenzo, but it's obvious he's read up on the upcoming fuel crisis facing America and the world, and he knows that two things are going to happen to automobiles in America.
1. The Big 3 will in large part be caught with their pants down
2. Premium small cars will be the next big thing.
Only VW makes premium small cars. Because gas is about to become VERY expensive, people are going to want nice cars, but nice cars that are fuel misers. Basically our auto choices are going to become like Europe's auto choices. The only middle class automobile manufacturer in the US from Europe is VW. Right now things look grim for VW, but if they can get their collective head out of the sand for just long enough to update their Golf and Jetta, improve quality across the board, and stop building 12 and 10 cylinder cars and SUVs that no one wants or can afford, they'll make billions. The Phaeton's failure and the Touraeg's failure might just be that wake up call. I've seen spy photos of the new Jetta, and the new Golf is already available in Europe. VW needs to work on getting their diesels emission ready for ALL 50 US states, instead of just most of America. The enormous markets of California, and New York, do not allow new diesel TDIs to be sold there. Not smart.
In the last couple of weeks two blogs have written me to be linked. The first one is a blog of sorts from the American International Automobile Dealers Association. This is the lobby of the Auto dealers in America. Frank Giovinazzi, a fellow Italian, is an editor there and writes interesting stories concerning automobiles and the auto dealership industry. I want to reassure people I'm not a schill for them, though I did beg for a job, but I thought people would find this group interesting. I had no real idea of their existence, but they are a powerful organization that holds a great deal of power not only in Washington, but also over the auto manufacturers, both American and foreign. Something to look at it.
Kurt Clark is an automotive consultant. This is a job I'd always wanted to have, and he's achieved it. He is a professional mechanic who routinely gives his services to law firms suing the pants off of manufacturers and dealerships alike. So this is a counter balance to the above link. His blog is well updated and well done. It's good to have a literate mechanic's technical view on the various introductions of doodads the automobile industry creates constantly, as well as the real picture of what is going with engineering and new vehicles.
See you in a bit!