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New GM Emerges From Bankruptcy; Comments - VIDEO ENHANCED

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SPEAKING AS AN OWNER*: GM is Moving Forward with Same Old Products and Old Values

By Marc J. Rauch
Exec. Vice President/Co-Publisher
The Auto Channel

General Motors’ President and CEO Fritz Henderson hosted a news conference this morning to announce that General Motors has emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The press conference with a Q&A session lasted just under one hour.

There were questions about ownership, executives salaries, on-going negotiations to sell off Hummer and Opel and the other old GM other-brands, and about current sales statistics. There was also the rather surprising announcement that Bob Lutz is un-retiring (from his previous announced Fall 2009 retirement date).

What was not discussed or presented to the media were any plans to re-make GM’s product line-up in any manner that might signify that we can really expect the new General Motors to be any more successful or competitive than the old General Motors. GM is still going to try and force feed Buick down our throats, with cars that look like yesterday’s Oldsmobiles (in the recent new LaCrosse introduction GM designers and execs were so happy that the new car still had the old Buick grille and portal elements, as if it means something …no one gives a damn …if the Chinese want Buicks give them Buicks; America does not want Buicks). We’re gonna continue to see ugly, hard-edged non-luxury cars from Cadillac, their luxury division. We’re gonna get five year old designs from Chevrolet; and GMC will produce re-badged copies of the other GM products. And, of course, we’re going to continue to be offered stinking gasoline-powered vehicles (with the possible exception of the Chevy Volt electric car that uses a small gasoline engine to help recharge the batteries).

There will apparently be no CNG or propane powered vehicles, even though GM knows how to make them. There’s no clean diesel alternatives, even though GM knows how to make them. And there was no announcement of either a logical extension of the Volt’s electric platform to all of the GM products (which would really give consumers an alternative), or any exciting news about the Volt actually coming on the market sooner than expected in order to beat the competition. No, instead we heard about a new trial sales program with eBay to sell the above mentioned tired and worn out products.

I’ll say again what I said last autumn, if GM (and Ford and Chrysler) want to continue making gasoline-powered vehicles that poison us and keep funding terrorist regimes, then they should have gone to the gasoline companies and to OPEC for the bailout money. If they’re taking money from the American public then they should make cars that will benefit US… that’s “us” as in “we” and coincidentally as in United States.

Why the rush to exit bankruptcy if this is all that we will get? It’s not as if that by GM exiting bankruptcy that the economic depression is officially over, and it sounds like GM is still going to need another infusion of billions of dollars. What’s the point? If the company wants to continue and it needs re-making, re-make it!

Change. We need change. We need real change. We need change from a new Federal Administration that promised change and is incapable of doing anything different than the dolt they replaced.

Hey, have a nice weekend. Enjoy the summer. Hopefully it won't be the last as a free and democratic one.

*As a U.S. taxpayer I am a part owner of the new GM

Click PLAY to watch the COMPLETE press conference video