It's not 1979. Go to any Big 3 dealership and look at the products. They are well made, cost competitive, and come with stellar service intervals and maintenance packages. You can hardly get a better value these days.
Perhaps, if you want a vehicle that doesn't get good gas mileage.
This is bullshit. The average engine size in the US is 3.2L, and in Europe it's 2.0L.
That is due to the marketing, the hype, and the lack of efficient choices by the big 3. They sell vehicles that are crap, that "look" pretty... and fall apart in 3-5 years. I'm still driving a 1994 Toyota Camry 2dr, that get's 33MPG. That's on my daily commute, not just hwy miles.
I had a big 3 dealership last year tell me that I needed a new car, because, "Your Camry doesn't have any warranty, and can't be that efficient." And they wanted to sell me a vehicle that got 24/28mpg for 19K.
Sorry, the Big 3 have been screwing the American people for FAR too long. Let them fail. Good Riddance.
For one, engine size is not a good determinant of fuel efficiency. If it was, then diesel engines on ships would never get out of the harbor.
Add to that the fact that European drivers are completely different consumer types than Americans. Driving is for the well to do in Europe. And given that the whole of Europe could fit into America, well... do the math. The products here need to tackle city commutes and take the family on vacation for 4000 miles. And look good doing it. That's a difficult balance to strike.
Detroit makes the cars that people want. Not all people. But they're not making stuff that people don't want. The proof is in the pudding. They sell more cars than foreign marques. Not just globally, but domestically. They don't go in some high rise board room and decide to sell powerful engines that get 20mpg in a "pretty" package because that's what they think will sell. They spend YEARS on market research and focus groups. In fact, one of the biggest problems is that the product development cycle is too long. Takes too much market research into consideration, which is why you get things like the Aztek or the Lincoln pick up. But you also get the Hemi back, the Jeep Liberty, and the return of the Charger and the Challenger (both of which get 25mpg+). The market tells them what they want, and they deliver. The Hemi engine's power efficiency is moot with today's engine designs. But it was the most successful engine branding campaign ever and that's why Chrysler sells a lot of Hemi's. The market WANTS it.
You're also forgetting that General Motors resurrected the electric car with the EV1, and proved that there was a marketplace for it, despite California's emission rules being dropped. If anything, the government screwed GM by telling them that 10% of all cars sold would have to be zero emissions, and then renegging and dropping the requirement after GM sank millions of dollars into product development. Meanwhile, no other marque brought an electric car to market until AFTER the law was repealed. So who's really getting screwed here?
If you look at quality standards, all of the domestic marques rank very high, relative to sales volume. They would probably rank higher, except the rankings don't take into account volume. It's hard to compete with a BMW or Lexus, which are premium brands, with an Impala or Mustang. While cars like the Camry and Accord are always at the top and outsell anything in their class, a lot of that has to do with the fact that those product lines are simpler than what Detroit offers. It's been recently that there have been more options available on the Accord, and because of that, quality has slipped in recent years, allowing Toyota to edge Honda. American's want options and will pay for them, so Detroit responds. Previous to the Accord's reign, the #1 car on quality lists for most of the 90's was Saturn.
Watching the news coverage about this is just sad. It's easy to beat up on these guys, and say they make crappy cars, because it's fashionable to say that. Just like it's fashionable to listen to 80s music. Detroit doesn't make crappy cars today. They are the envy of the world in terms of engineering, production process, and volume. Toyota chases GM. Not the other way around. GM sells more cars in China than Toyota does. The industry suffers from a PR problem that's not rooted in reality. Kinda like Brittney Spears. Yes, it's fun to laugh at her antics and call her a fruit loop, forgetting the fact that she's a human being with real problems that none of us would trade anything for.
RE: Show Of Hands