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Old 04-05-2007, 01:17 PM   #1
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GM's idiocy shown in small car "greenwashing" bait & switch

GM's idiocy can be astounding.

This week they revealed 3 "A" segment compact designs at the NY auto show and asked the US public to "vote" on their web site for the one they like most.



http://www.greencarcongress.com/2007...es_t.html#more

Predictably, the stunt generated LOTS of buzz, and nearly 150,000 "votes" in a couple of days.

Then, in another story, Lutz states GM is incapable of increasing fuel economy by 4% a year without adding up to $6K US to the price of its vehicles.

http://www.greencarcongress.com/2007...tz_propos.html

In the same interview, he says GM will build one of the 3 small cars.

BUT...

Quote:
Lutz said that all of the minicars would get in the high 40 or 50 mpg fuel economy range, could be priced starting at $10,000 and could be built in either China or India. The vehicles currently are not being designed to meet US safety requirements.
What a dolt.
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:53 PM   #2
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i am a little annoyed by these designs... seems like except for that first one maybe aerodynamics where not a high priority at all but ok perhaps looks deceive

in bigger pictures they all seem to have cameras in place of the rearview mirror.... how stupid is that... that virtually eliminates any benefits of a camera... not just aero wise....i imagine you'll have some spending to do when ill mannered individuals in need of a new webcam spots them.

the HHR is another strange design.. i can't say it really looks bad, and i know enough people who'd by one one first glance. but i can imagine it's hard to make any really progress in the FE department if your going back the 1930's styling!

i bet most people here will gladly improve the FE of any given vehicle for 6K
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Old 04-05-2007, 02:24 PM   #3
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Mmm, gm news v. honda news lately is a bit comical.

La la la, at least they're making something somewhere, at some time.
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Old 04-05-2007, 02:49 PM   #4
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I do think that this should be a wake up call for the US gov't. I personally think that the safety standards are out of control in America.

It's time to cut back on the everly increasing saftey standards and let people pick for themselves what they want to drive.
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Old 04-05-2007, 03:01 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Timion View Post
It's time to cut back on the everly increasing saftey standards and let people pick for themselves what they want to drive.
Not so much cut back... but lets stop getting stricter.... I mean, some manufactures have gone for higher standards - Volvo is a great example (not so sure nowadays after Ford stepped in).

Is it just me, or do they have an almost SUV look to them? I'm not saying that necessarily bad, but I do find that interesting. As if certain markets will only buy small cars that look like big cars... I guess that could similar to cars that "look" fast :P
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Old 04-05-2007, 03:35 PM   #6
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Hello -

I don't see the need to decrease safety for MPG. Here is one argument in favor of lightweight composites that offer the same safety :

Hypercar? Vehicle Safety ? Composites & Hydrogen
http://www.rmi.org/images/other/HCFa...icleSafety.pdf
Quote:
Composite Safety
Just because HYPERCAR? vehicles are ultralight doesn?t mean they are unsafe. Materials and design are much more important for safety then mere mass, as any bicycle helmet will illustrate. Aside from the safety features that any car can boast, a HYPERCAR? vehicle is safer because of its advanced composite body structure. Formula One and Indy race cars are made of advanced composite materials, not only because their light weight improves acceleration and handling, but also because they provide the ultimate in driver safety.
However, automakers have "sunken investments" in their existing industrial base, so I doubt they would want to do this unless they were forced to.

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Old 04-05-2007, 03:38 PM   #7
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I think two of them look very truckish.

It's as though GM is so pathetically desperate that consumers please please please keep buying their big fat profit margin trucks, that desperation is being expressed even in their smallest designs, like some kind of Freudian slip.

Heck it's not just GM - look at DCX's truck-esque Caliber. Its Hornet concept even has truckish elements to it.
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Old 04-05-2007, 03:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
I don't see the need to decrease safety for MPG. Here is one argument in favor of lightweight composites that offer the same safety :
Inexpensive, safe, or lightweight. Choose any two!
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Old 04-05-2007, 04:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfg83 View Post
I don't see the need to decrease safety for MPG. Here is one argument in favor of lightweight composites that offer the same safety :
As bill already posted.... Composites are EXPENSIVE. And I don't think the big mfr's really want to retool :/ The nice thing about composite construction with respect to a crash is that composites will fail at the point of impact rather than at the "Weakest link" like an alloy would. But, consumers really don't want to pay for something like this when steel is so much cheaper :/ But hell, look at the Delorian - it had a fiberglass sub frame and resin coated I-beam center frame. Perhaps it was too far ahead of it's time

On the subject of safety
I did see an internal sled concept not too long ago:


With dynamic spring-damper control - that could be a cost effective way to meet safety requirements. The people that came up with it claim that the design doesn't need an airbag system and is more safe than a traditional design with bags :P
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Old 04-05-2007, 04:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
I think two of them look very truckish.

Heck it's not just GM - look at DCX's truck-esque Caliber. Its Hornet concept even has truckish elements to it.
I agree truckish, Also not only the caliber but look at the new dodge Nitro. No more Neon either.
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