Episode 643 – Supply Shortages Hit U.S., Saab Finds New Investor, Toyota & VW Ban Tobacco

May 16th, 2011 at 11:25am

Runtime 8:02

Major automotive retailers in the U.S. are running out of inventory because of production disruptions in Japan due to the earthquake. Saab says it now has another last minute deal with Chinese automaker, Pangda which will reportedly pay $92 million for 24 percent of Saab. Toyota and Volkswagen have banned tobacco use at two of their plants in the U.S. All that and more, plus a look at a website Johnson Controls just launched that’s designed to educate consumers about the benefits of hybrid cars.


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This is Autoline Daily for May 16, 2011. And now, the news.

SUPPLY SHORTAGES HIT U.S. (subscription required)
Looks like the production disruptions in Japan due to the earthquake are really starting to show up now. The Wall Street Journal reports that major automotive retailers in the U.S., such as AutoNation and Group1, are running out of inventory. As a result, AutoNation is cutting out sales incentives, which will immediately boost prices by $400. They’ve also cut out advertising for Japanese models and switched to promoting Chevrolets and Fords. One Toyota dealer in California that sells 58 Corollas a month only received one new Corolla this month. The Corolla is made in Japan. But Nissan has plenty of inventory for Altimas and Maximas that are built in the U.S. And while the examples that are cited here are what’s happening in the American market, you can be sure the same thing is happening worldwide. They say the worst months will be July and August.

Even though sales are slowing at Japanese dealerships, others are hiring sales people. So far this year one Detroit-area Chevy store has brought on six staff members, compared to last year when it hired just one person and in 2009 when it hired ZERO people. And the same thing is happening across the country since analysts predict U.S. sales could match the 2008 levels, which means dealers need more sales people.

Saab says it now has another last-minute deal with yet another Chinese automaker, this one called Pangda. It will reportedly pay $92 million for 24 percent of Saab. That compares to the $173 million that another Chinese automaker, Hawtai, was going to pay to get almost 30 percent of Saab. Looks like the price keeps going down. Yet, it’s not a done deal. Pangda still has to get approval from Chinese government agencies, something that Hawtai was unable to do.

Porsche is talking heresy! It’s considering building cars outside of Germany. China and the U.S. are possible locations to manufacture its vehicles. The company is especially contemplating building vehicles in China in order to avoid high import duties.

TOYOTA & VW OUTLAW TOBACCO (subscription required)
Toyota and Volkswagen are waging a war against tobacco. Ward’s reports the automakers have banned the substance at two of their plants in the U.S. Any type of tobacco – smokeless or otherwise – is not allowed at Toyota’s facility in Blue Springs, Mississippi. Likewise, it’s verboten at VW’s plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The companies are also encouraging workers that smoke to quit. These are likely the most stringent tobacco policies of any automakers in the U.S. Most automakers allow smoking in designated outdoor areas, which seems perfectly reasonable. In fact, the UAW has fought to allow its members to smoke. Maybe that’s how the union can organize the transplants!

Passenger cars aren’t the only vehicles being converted to run on something other than gasoline. Iveco, the commercial-vehicle company owned by Fiat, just introduced a prototype of its industrial vehicle, the Trakker, used for agricultural and industrial work. The Trakker Bi-Fuel runs on a mixture of 40 percent ethanol and 60 percent diesel and has a separate fuel tank for each. So far the first tests show a 6 percent reduction in fuel costs and the company expects to see better results as it does more tests.

Coming up next, tier-one supplier Johnson Controls just launched a new website designed to educate consumers about the benefits of hybrid cars. Learn more after the break.

A lot of great minds have come out of these halls here at the University of Michigan, and while it’s easy for someone with a Ph.D. to understand the benefits of advanced vehicle powertrains, like hybrids, the average consumer can sometimes struggle. Johnson Controls, tier-one supplier, just launched a new website designed to fix this issue.

MyDemoDrive.com is designed to educate new-car buyers. It allows them to virtually compare the fuel consumption, emissions and travel costs of three different vehicle powertrains commonly available on the market today.

“The whole purpose of this website is to allow consumers to understand what the different technologies are from a base vehicle to other forms of hybridization, what the benefit to them is given how they drive and what might be a good selection for them as they’re looking for new vehicles. It’s really about educating them so they’re not scared of the technology and they can make more informed choices.”

The simulation compares conventional internal-combustion engines, ICEs with start/stop systems and full hybrids. For now, its calculations are based off a midsize sedan traveling 12,000 miles per year. Users can choose from six different drive routes, each one replicating a real-world commute with varying amounts of urban congestion and highway cruising. MyDemoDrive.com also lets users choose how much they pay for gasoline, an important factor in the calculation.

After specifying the route and fuel price the simulator takes over, keeping track of how efficiently each powertrain performs. And the savings show up right there at the end of the drive. But why is JCI so interested in appealing to consumers? It doesn’t sell cars.

“We have an interest, obviously, as the world’s largest battery supplier both in terms of our lead-acid business as well as our advanced battery technologies through our lithium-ion effort. We are a technology and a solutions provider. And as the systems mature and there’s more expectations around the vehicle and what the vehicle system has to provide.  Our systems and our technologies are going to have to grow and change with them, and we view this as a way of being proactive and helping to understand how are consumers thinking about these different vehicle choices, how are they going to make a decision, because that will have an impact on our technology development, where we put our focus and our ability to better partner with our customers, the OEMs, and the end consumers by delivering them a product that makes sense to them.”

Thanks for that report, Craig. Again, you can check out Johnson Controls’ interactive simulator at MyDemoDrive.com.

Before we go, it’s Monday and that means you can catch the latest episode of RoundAbout right now. What automotive atrocity did Osama bin Laden refuse to commit? You can find out that answer and much more at AutolineDetroit.TV.

And that’s today’s report on the top news in the global automotive industry. Thanks for watching, we’ll see you tomorrow.

Thanks to our Partners for embedding Autoline Daily on their websites: Autoblog and WardsAuto.com

76 Comments to “Episode 643 – Supply Shortages Hit U.S., Saab Finds New Investor, Toyota & VW Ban Tobacco”

  1. HtG Says:

    1Porsche may build outside of der Vaterland, John? I think they did this with the original Boxsters, which were made Finland. (almost the Vaterland)

    2 Did the price of SAAB go down by half or did the bribe to one of the glorious mandarins in Beijing just go up?

    3 verboten. Ferr-boat-ten. Now you try it.

    Sorry, it’s be a jerk Monday. It gets better.

  2. Dale Leonard-Lakewood,Oh Says:

    Go-Victor-Go….Save that SAAB !!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. jesse Says:

    Yet another assault on smokers!When will it end.I quit several years ago but this nonsense still annoys the crap out of me!! How about you designate an area where all the NON SMOKERS can congregate!GEEZ!

  4. tj Martin Says:

    Victor Muller ;

    Let me say this about the man in light of the fact that there’s almost no doubt this attempt to save SAAB will fail as well.

    Victor Muller , in my opinion , based on interviews , articles as well as a couple of one on one exchanges is a talented and gifted individual who is unfortunately stuck between the proverbial Rock And a Hard Place .

    The ‘Rock ‘ being Spyker’s ownership of SAAB . They arer by far ( though Marusia may yet challenge them for the title ) the most Pretentious and Full of it Automotive Manufacture to arise in the last 20 years , with ZERO Business acumen , and even less an understanding of what it takes to succeed in ANY aspect of the Automotive Industry .

    The ” Hard Place ” being SAAB’s extensive debts as well as the decades worth of very bad Public Relations they’ve earned due to the Quality and Reliability of their cars .

    So to say the least , Mr Muller has at best an almost impossible job ahead of him to pull SAAB out of the Sink Hole they’re in .

    In conclusion I’ll say this again . I would love to see SAAB rise form the ashes . But in fact I’m almost sure they will not .

    Unless of course Spyker can be pulled out of the Equation and a Suitable Buyer (Pnagda aint it ) can be found

  5. tj Martin Says:

    1) Boxsters and Caymens aren’t built in Der Vaterland , so whats new about Porsche moving other cars production to different countries . Especially since VW – Audi now owns Porsche .

    Any bets they’ll build Porsche’s in Mexico ?

    2) Smoking – Well I still smoke a Pipe and a good Cigar from time to time and remember well living in VT where smoking anywhere outside , including my back deck was punishable by a $250 fine ( good Ole Peoples Republic of VT ) So this hog wash from Toyota and VW banning ANY smoking from their plants is just another in a very long String of the Nanny Nation taking over our lives . I’ve had enough !

    3) @ HtG The German Scholar wife ( Goethe Institute , Goetting Germany ) says the V in verboten is a combination of F & V so FVerrrr . I’m not arguing just passing on Mrs TJ’s wisdom

  6. SlimJim Says:

    The Corolla is made in Canada and Japan, but mostly Canada for the N.A. market

  7. HtG Says:


  8. Chuck Grenci Says:

    I’ve never smoked, but am continued to be amazed at others telling others what they can and can not do (legal activities of course); if the companies want to offer incentives to quit, fine, but some of this stuff is just none of their business (though Henry Ford made all his workers learn English and prohibited them from drinking, even at home). Quote from Ty Webb, “Caddyshck”: “This isn’t Russia. Is this Russia? This isn’t Russia….”

  9. HtG Says:

    Honda is offering me up to 2500 above kkb on a trade. Feeling special.

  10. pedro fernandez Says:

    When the manure hits the ventilator for Japanese car makers, it does so big time, the recalls, the competition getting ahead in many respects and the earthquake/tsunami. It will take a lot of hard work to get back on track. Honda/Toyota need to get back to what made them great to begin with!!

  11. HtG Says:

    today, kbb for my Civic is 6700(maybe 9200 if Honda is buying it) in a trade. Last Xmas, carmax offered 4G for the same car. My, how value rises and falls.

  12. pedro fernandez Says:

    Holy inflationary times, Batman. pretty soon my POS ’98 320k mile Corolla is gonna be worth a grand!!!!

  13. Kit Gerhart Says:

    According to KBB, the private party sale value of my Prius is $28,320, about $6000 more than I paid for it about 9 months ago.

  14. tj Martin Says:

    For what its worth my MINI Cooper jumped from $14K to an easy ( with no negotiating ) $16 -17K . This from the BMW and the M-B dealer as well as the Volvo dealer by phone ( haven’t been down to have a look at the XC60 yet )

    Wonder what the Toyota dealer will offer against his new FJ ?

  15. SalvadorG. Says:

    Saab says it now has another last-minute deal with yet another Chinese automaker, this one called Pangda.
    I wonder if Germany will allow Porsche (rather VW) to build outside Germany, Oh Yeah! I forgot; Germans are not Communist.

    Already visited JohnMc.
    Start from 9.99 dollars a Gallon and work your way down.
    I concluded that stop & Start technology is the way to go in the future.

  16. Bob in Atlanta Says:

    tj @5. 2) Your comment about the “nanny nation” misses the point by a mile. These are PRIVATE companies stating their employment policies – not THE GOVERNMENT dictating everybody’s behavior. The companies will probably save money on health insurance costs. Non-smokers use less sick leave, resulting in higher productivity. The government passes laws to restrict smoking, and then it complains when tobacco tax receipts drop. Big difference between a private business and big government.

  17. tj Martin Says:

    @ SalvadorG

    Check out the ” True Cost to Own ” calculator on Edmunds as well if you’re considering a new ride .


    Added to the MyDemoDrive.com this will give you a pretty accurate estimate as to the Real Overall
    Cost of owning a particular model ( eg the Stop/Start may cost more in repairs etc)

    This Function sure changed my mind in a hurry as to what to consider buying .

  18. tj Martin Says:

    Bob in Atlanta ;

    I didn’t so much as miss the point as I am pointing out that what the Government starts in the name of Nanny Protectionism the Private Sector follows suit on .

    I should of been clearer on that but ………. No Edit Function .

    FYI; Big Difference between Government and Private Business ?

    Urmmm . Not as much as you might think or you and I might wish for .

  19. SalvadorG. Says:

    tj Martin Says:
    Check out the ” True Cost to Own ” calculator on Edmunds as well if you’re considering a new ride .

    No tj, I’m not considering a new ride and you shouldn’t make a comparison with Edmuds vs MyDemoDrive, cause MyDemoDrive is clearly flaw.

  20. Bob in Atlanta Says:

    tj #18: I understand. I never have been one to like rules anyway… anybody’s rules.

  21. tj Martin Says:

    SalvadorG ;

    ” …. MyDrive is clearly flawed ”

    I haven’t looked at it ( didn’t think after the Edmunds tool I needed it ) so what’s your appraisal of MyDrive and why is it flawed ?

    Just asking cause I don’t know and would rather not take the time looking at the MyDrive site . Not trying to start an argument .

  22. cwolf Says:

    I am sympathetic towards all of the US workers that assemble Japanese brands, yet could care less about company misfortunes themselves because of the unfair trade policies. The reported increased sales to them since the disaster sounded encouraging, until it was said the totals only amounted to a stinking 12,000 units! As far as I am concerned,the next load of Japanese imports can be unloaded anywhere along the banks of the Mississippi; They’d make a good levy.

  23. tj Martin Says:

    @ cwolf – Ouch !!!

    Now hang on a minute cwolf . Just last week someone was berating me for saying that the Japanese still had an unfair trade policy. And now you’re affirming what I said .

    So who’s right . You & I or the guy that gave me Flak for saying this ???

  24. pedro fernandez Says:

    I thought most US Corollas were built in Canada, now that NUMMI is history, including their engines and transmissions being assembled right here!! If the domestics don’t take advantage of this lull in Japanese production, they will mess up just like they did back 2 yrs ago with the C4C screw ups.

  25. tj Martin Says:


    So a friend hooks me up with four of his friends and a relative , all presently Volvo owners and all dumping them because of the extensive reliability issues ( all to a number repeated tranny problems )

    So now I can’t even take the Edmunds TCO seriously as First Hand Knowledge directly contradicts their findings !!!

    Lets just face it . Everybody Lies when it comes to the Consumer . Of anything .

    Who ever said buying a new car is fun either doesn’t care what kind of problems they wind up with or has lost touch with Reality !


  26. tj Martin Says:

    Fine !!! Didn’t much want a Badge Engineered Ford now Owned by the Chinese anyway !!!! ( Volvo )

  27. pedro fernandez Says:

    Tj, what about 4Runner,Pathfinder, Highlander, Pilot, Edge, Enclave??? none of those interest you?

  28. pedro fernandez Says:

    Tried this my drive thing, waste of my miserable time, don’t see the point, just read up on actual MPG’s from the EPA website where they show users’ actual numbers.

  29. cwolf Says:

    @tj. Guess we have to thank our Gov’t for turning a blind eye to the inequity. And in that regard, can’t fault the Asians for taking advantage. Then, one the other side of the coin, our oun auto industy uses the tax excuse to ship more and more production to Mexico. Hell.. it’s not about taxes; it’s about the $25/day labor rate that allows the CEO’s to put more cash in their pockets in the form of investments where the tax rate is a mere 15%! If these amegos were paid a decent wage maybe they would’nt want to hop the fence! I don’t care what anyone says, large industries will sell the gold out of their buried mothers teeth for a dollar, then lobby our representatives for either another tax break or another tax payer dollar.
    Even if there were a slight chance you and I are incorrect in our opinion towards the Japanese industry and present trade agreement, I will always rejoice at their smallest misfortune. My middle finger salutes them.

  30. tj Martin Says:

    @ pedro

    4Runner – Too big and too little head room . I hit my head in the new ones !!

    Highlander – Too soft . Feels like a barge

    Pathfinder – Can’t say why but never have liked them . Rented one a couple of times and still don’t

    Pilot – What does Honda know about C/SUV’s ?

    Edge- Blind Spots galore . Like the looks but the motor is rough as well

    Sigh ……… Back to my corner , brew in hand with a long Pout at the ready .

  31. HtG Says:

    what weight should we give to the US Cold War interest in having the Japanese economy be a strong bulwark against the Soviets? Domestic industry paid a price for that in the second half of the 20th century. That said, it’s been clear to me that Japanese cars have been worth more than they cost, and we’re seeing a similar thing with the Koreans. I guess as long as the central bankers keep conjuring up currency, everything should be pretty sweet. (this isn’t sarcasm, it’s resignation)

  32. HtG Says:

    tj, Cavalry Blue, and be done with it.

  33. tj Martin Says:


    Want a laugh ? The “guy ” I was arguing with is one of the head honchos at Victory M/C’s .

    It began because I was ragging him that Victory had done nothing in the years they’ve been in business other than make H-D copycats and that his long term business goals were weak at best .

    I was giving him the benefit of the doubt saying I understood about the Trade Imbalance with Japan but that doesn’t excuse poor quality and lack of innovation in comparison to say Ducati and Triumph .

    Thats when he said there was no trade imbalance with Japan . Where upon I asked him point blank . ” So what then IS your excuse ? “

  34. tj Martin Says:

    @ HtG ;

    Bastard !!! :o )

  35. tj Martin Says:

    @ HtG ;

    But mine will have to be Silver or White thank you !!!

    Thhpppppppt :o )

  36. HtG Says:

    oh, I need to lie down now, tj.

  37. pedro fernandez Says:

    Tj have you ever looked into the Enclave or the Chevy version, Traverse?

  38. Andrew Charles Says:

    Most Corollas are built in Canada, but Toyota took the opportunity of shutting down NUMMI to repatriate production to struggling Japanese plants. So far this year 28% of Corollas were imported, but that jumped to 33% last month as sales dropped to third place behind the Civic and Cruze. In the same period last year, just 3% of Corollas were imported. Camry, Highlander, RX and RAV4 sales are also supplemented by imports.

  39. SalvadorG. Says:

    tj Martin Says:
    May 16th, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    SalvadorG ;

    ” …. MyDrive is clearly flawed ”

    I haven’t looked at it ( didn’t think after the Edmunds tool I needed it ) so what’s your appraisal of MyDrive and why is it flawed ?

    Just asking cause I don’t know and would rather not take the time looking at the MyDrive site . Not trying to start an argument .

    Oh! You had to try it then. the MyDemoD. test it divides it results across how green a cars is, an average fuel cost during one year of driving and what will be the pay out of a car over the long period and that’s all. It is all base in some sort of study Average between hybrids/stop&go/normal gas engine cars (No real cars or driving).

    It’s nothing like Edmunds.

  40. Andrew Charles Says:

    Increasing imports from Japan of course runs counter to Toyota’s JIT, Lean Production strategy, but if the choice comes down to shutting a plant in the US or Japan, politics wins over the business.

  41. pedro fernandez Says:

    Is it not cheaper for Toyota, Nissan and Honda to make their cars over here, just like it is for Ford to make them in Mexico??

  42. HtG Says:

    keeping Japanese workers on the line would be the better natioanl choice even if it isn’t short term economic for Toyota. Those people spend their paychecks at home. Did you see the Emperor go on TV, Pedro. This disaster is about the nation.

    and how about the Jeep Cherokee, tj? Very sharp on the road.

  43. pedro fernandez Says:

    Well, I have no doubt that the Japanese are proud and resilient, but will that extend to their domestic car makers or are they gonna try to save $$ on labor by moving more production stateside.

  44. pedro fernandez Says:

    If I may speak for TJ, ” Don’t trust Chrysler products any more than Hyundai or Kia”

  45. Steve Ashley Says:

    Let’s have JCI tell the whole story about hybrid cost. More complexity and many more parts dig a much bigger hole in the environment to initially build. Couple that with two power trains to overhaul or scrap and maybe the web site name should more appropriately called “MY I AM SUCH-A-DUMMY.COM”!

  46. HtG Says:

    if you don’t rely on your car to get to work everyday, the odd breakdown may be acceptable. Rovers are reliability poster childs, but for the people who buy them as a lifestyle choice, it’s an acceptable downside. I know that with the Miata, I expect to have to fix stuff and that I can’t haul stuff. But I likes it a lots.

  47. tj Martin Says:

    @ pedro

    #44 Amen . thanks for saving me the effort . And here I thought HtG was a friend . Hmmn . :o )

  48. tj Martin Says:

    @ pedro ;

    Chebbies . Hmmmn . No thanks . Jess don like dem Chebbies even a little . Seriously though the Blind Spots .

    If I’m gonna deal with Blind spots , might as well have a reliable Tonka Toy ( FJ ) with Blind Spots .

  49. HtG Says:

    tj, friend. Look, gentle.

    Seriously though, if reliability is not a deal breaker for you, maybe the Jeep will tickle you.

  50. tj Martin Says:

    @ HtG

    Now come on HtG . That Miata is one very reliable little bugger . Thats half the appeal . If it weren’t for the instruments I’d buy that or the Honda S2000 in a Heartbeat !With a removable hard top for the winters and some good snowbies

    All the thrills and fashion of a Brit Roadster with none of the inherent problems . Ohh Lucas Prince of Darkness . What nightmares that can conjure up .

  51. tj Martin Says:

    Reliability is the deal breaker . Hence the GLK falling off the wagon . And the Volvo and the BMW and ……………

  52. tj Martin Says:


    If there’s any question . I’m just razzing you a bit . All in good fun . Have to provide some entertainment for all those having to put up with my car buying woes .

    :o ) :o )

  53. tj Martin Says:


    If I was to buy a JEEP it’d have to be a Wrangler . 2 or 4 Door depending on space .

  54. HtG Says:

    then it’s FJ for tj.

    as for the Miata, I have an unexpected bill coming, as the specialist tells me the timing belt is dry-rotted. It was an aftermarket brand put in by the previous owner. Otherwise though, you’re correct about the car’s reliability, and that was one reason I bought the car. You can fit about five grocery bags in it, but that mini file cabinet had to ride shot gun.

  55. tj Martin Says:

    But I won’t . Buy a JEEP that is .

  56. HtG Says:

    tj@51. as cwolf has written, I too am ‘just funnin.’

  57. tj Martin Says:


    That Miata is a heck of a car regardless of the rude surprise .

  58. tj Martin Says:

    ” House ” time . Till the morrow

  59. HtG Says:

    I didn’t write about it during the day shift, but a couple of weeks ago I took the SkipBarber Adv. Car Control course. I got to drive the MX5 cup car that had been set up to oversteer and make 200hp. The learnings from the session has made my own Miata that much more fun.

  60. pedro fernandez Says:

    TJ I am sure you can pick up a Hummer 3 for a song and a dance, No? let me guess, blind spots.

  61. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    Smoking stops the effects of Fluoride, which is more dangerous than Smoking.

    They want you sick for their corporate healthcare system, and Fluoride makes people very sick.

    You think Smoking causes cancer sheesh…. check out the evils of Fluoride.

    Not to mention the mental and psychological disabilities.

    Then again I cant say that, because Anti Fluoride activists are on the DHS list for potential threats.

    Oh, whatever who cares.

  62. HyundaiSmoke Says:


    So much for Corporatist healthcare, eh?

  63. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    Also Fluoride keeps people docile= no protesting, no militant resistance, etc…

    You cant have people smoke the effects of Fluoride away, because that’s way way too dangerous to the masters.

    Fluoride isnt just in the tap water, but it’s in the ground water now, as well as the food that is grown using ground water.

    Fluoride also leads to increased sterility= Very Great for the Population Control advocates.

  64. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    Fluoride also decreases logical judgment, which makes people susceptable to being brainwashed easily as well.


  65. HtG Says:

    oh,, excuse me, I didn’t know this room was occupied. Hey, what is that thing?

  66. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    Just look at MOST cars pre- “New” Hyundai/KIA and after, dammm.

    It’s obvious most of you people are almost brainwashed nearly to the point ZERO hope.

    Japanese and American buyers are obviously the most brainwashed of them all. All of those years of driving cars that needed bags over their heads to block the eye burn= DEFINATE CASES OF FLUORIDE POISONING.

    No wonder why some, and an increasing amount of younger people are disinterested in cars.

    Just look at the monotonous/weirdness/trying too hard, eye cover worthy, waste of natural resoruces Japan and Even Detroit still puts out.

    - The Cruze looks really old now (GM should really consider giving it an ENTIRE new body for 2013- it’s like the Sebring of small cars to these eyes- I’m a small car afficionado so I know), and people still cant get enough of the thing. I see those things everywhere now= Fluoride (shakes head).

    - All Toyotas/Lexuses= Fluoride Brainwashing

    - Subaru= Ultra Fluoride poisoning

    - Honda/Acura= Ex Anti Fluoride activists who’ve joined the system, and are now mega brainwashed.

    - Mazda needs to get back to smoking, because Fluoride is starting to get to them.

    - Chevy Volt= Ridiculous Amounts of Fluoride LMAO.

    LMAO. Most of the cars on the market makes me laugh and say- “Are you Fuc-ing Kidding Me? They allowed that to get from a drawing board to a prototype, and then a production vehicle?”

    You may think I’m crazy, but once you do whatever it takes to have lower amounts of fluoride in your system you will see the world for what it really is.

    Fluoride Addled Americans are such spoiled and silly children who believe what people who have a vested interest from not allowing you to truly live free say.

    This makes 250 Million Americans very dangerous to the other 6.75 Billion people on the planet, including the oppressed (from your chemical induced gulibility) enlightened Americans like myself.

    These 250 Million Fluoride Addled, “Bread and Circus” entertainment loving, chemically induced zombies are the most potentially destructive cretons in the history of man.

    Talk about Weapons of Mass Destruction- shit…

    Scary people.

  67. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    On the Cruze, do not change that interior at all, except maybe for the center stack. You can be a little more daring and borderline controversial with the design.

    The Cruze needs an entire new body by 2013. I suggest that it looks like a monster ready to attack- the Sonic tries to do that, but even the Sonic still doesnt go far enough.

    The Cruze Hatch- eww… Get rid of it immediately. Dont even put that thing on the lot. The Cruze and Sonic are related. Make that Cruze look more like a Sonic.

  68. tj Martin Says:

    @ pedro

    If you’re peaking in this morning .

    RE; Post #59

    Its a Hummer ! Do you need any other excuses not to buy one ?

    But you’re right on the deals available . The local dealer will sell you a Brandy New Zero Miles H2 for less than the cost of a new Corollla . Assuming you could find one :o )

  69. tj Martin Says:

    Ahhhhh its so refreshing to wake up in the morning to the Insane Ramblings of a Psychotic Humming Bird strung out on God Knows What .

    Next he’ll be telling us the Mother Ship is arriving on Friday to pick up the True Believers ( he’s been taking the Hyundai/KIA ads too seriously ) and turn all us non believers into Coal Dust .

  70. dcars Says:

    Sorry guys, I’m against smoking. As far as the exterior design of the Cruze. I like it. It’s nice to see a small car that isn’t expensive and has looks that aren’t intended to appeal to the high school cheerleader, unlike the last version of the Caviler.

  71. Kit Gerhart Says:

    “Edge- Blind Spots galore . Like the looks but the motor is rough as well”

    …and it has that awful touch screen thing mandatory in most trim levels.

  72. GPL Says:

    tj said, “That Miata is one very reliable little bugger.”

    By 100k miles mine had new plug wires, heater hose, speedo cable, clutch slave cylinder, pilot bearing, and rear main seal. It’s at 130k now and looks like it’s time for another speedo cable and has another oil leak. By part count it has actually been the worst vehicle I’ve ever owned, but when I drive it I forget about all of that.

  73. HtG Says:

    One very cute fix the Miata needed was for ignition ground wires to be re-insulated. The engine was misfiring at about 3200rpm and I saw the wires were bare. When the mechanic fixed it the engine fired fine. The explanation was that at some point an animal had taken up residence in the engine compartment, the proof being the fiberglass insulation under the brake master cylinder and the gnawed away plastic insulators on the ground wires. Pure joy.

  74. pedro fernandez Says:

    Guys if you want to have some fun driving a car,then there will be replacement parts issues unless you drive a boring, appliance like I do. But it’s obvious I’m, not alone, I can’t swing Usama’s severed head around without hitting a Corolla any where I go. I think I figured out what smokey inhales, it’s fumes from refrigerator insulation.

  75. HtG Says:

    Pedro, if I only thought HS were smoking lawn clippings, I’d take some harder shots.

  76. pedro fernandez Says:

    The local AutoNation retailers have been advertising the crap out of Ford and Chevy models as having plenty in stock, “No shortages here, I tell you, if you can’t find what you’re looking for, come here we got lots and lots of factory fresh vehicles of all types” This is C4C in reverse.