Toyota=Good, Detroit=Bad

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

I have previously pasted links to autoextremist.com , which is an excellent website with great insight and commentary into the auto industry, foreign and domestic. The site’s creator, Peter M. De Lorenzo is a fan of the American auto industry, but also one of its fiercest critics.

In addition to weekly columns, his site features “On The Table”, which is essentially a “thumbs-up” or “thumbs down” look at the auto world. This week, in addition to giving three out of three arrows down to Rahm Emanuel, for his complete lack of knowledge of the auto industry, (which hasn’t stopped him from telling the big three what to do) he also gave three arrows down to Toyota. It seems that contrary to what the media and the greenies of the world would have you believe, Toyota is in just about the same predicament as the Detroit Three.


“Toyota. That wonderful company that successfully pulled a Green Snuggie over consumers' eyes by actually convincing them that the hallowed Prius walked on water is now asking the Japanese government for $2 billion in loans to help its financial unit through these tough times. That's rich. It seems that Toyota was no different than the American car companies in their inability to predict the end of the large SUV era and all of the associated fallout that came with that egregious miscalculation, and now lo and behold, they're hemorrhaging money too.

Because, guess what? Toyota didn't make money selling the Prius, it made money by selling those trucks and SUVs. Not that anyone in Washington would care to notice. After all, we're talking about an entrenched mindset that revolves around the Toyota=Good, Detroit=Bad formula that has dominated thinking by the Potomac over the last decade. And that's not likely to change anytime soon. Another thing for the new administration to contemplate while they're burying Detroit? The fact that a large share of Toyota's profitability on the way to it becoming The Greatest Car Company on Earth was due to the fact that the Japanese government blatantly manipulated the yen to Toyota's advantage in order to help boost its profitability in the American market. Why do we think the Obama administration will find a way to blame that on Detroit somehow too?”

So someone else is saying the same thing. Green cars aren't profitable. If the D3 take the advice of Washington DC and the enviros, they will go out of buisness faster than their current rate.

Welcome to Michigan's world Toyota.

14 comments:

B Mac 11:49 AM  

Amen, brother.

A-freeking-men

Smitty 12:11 PM  

Toyota = good via NONUNION. Detroit = bad via UNION.

Fuck these tools in DC. That's all the argument is. Union obstructionists building their tanks versus progressive Japanese businessmen and their comfy-and-happy nonunion staff happily building green cars.

Bob 4:27 PM  

Did anyone else know that Chrysler designed and built the M-1 Tank until it sold the operation to General Dynamics?

Smitty 4:52 PM  

I did not. Where, praytell, did Chrystler find the depleted uranium?

Bob 5:02 PM  

I did not. Where, praytell, did Chrystler find the depleted uranium?

Isn't that in the ammunition of the main gun? I am guessing they subbed that out.

steves 7:58 AM  

I had a Toyota Camry that was the best car I have ever owned, so I am may be somewhat biased. That being said, I have owned a variety of foreign and domestic cars and don't really have ank kind of major brand loyalty.

I just don't understand people that only buy one brand of car. My in-laws have only owned GM cars ever since they were married in 1972. I also have some trouble understanding the fanatical anti-foreign car or anti-domestic car sentiment that builds up in some people. Obviously, US companies produce some quality products, so a refusal to look at them seems to be some kind of elitist snobbery. OTOH, I have been lectured by some for buying a foreign car...by people that were wearing clothes made in Asian sweatshops, talking on cell phones made in China, posting stuff on boards with a computer made somewhere in Asia, etc. Hypocrites.

Bob, I also remember them testing the M-1 about 20 or 30 miles from where I lived during one winter.

Bob 8:41 AM  

Obviously, US companies produce some quality products, so a refusal to look at them seems to be some kind of elitist snobbery.

I agree. For people who work at the state, like myself, I'd call it pretty selfish.

I have been lectured by some for buying a foreign car...by people that were wearing clothes made in Asian sweatshops, talking on cell phones made in China,

Unfortunately these people had no choice, so really that's a false argument. If I could, I would only buy American made clothes, etc, and I used to, but that is nearly impossible now. Had someone vigorously defended that industry maybe we would have a choice.

I also have some trouble understanding the fanatical anti-foreign car...

I would probably fit into this category. I, like many others are tired of having pro-trade fundamentalists screw our country. GM only sold 2,000 cars in Japan last year, even though they are very successful in many foreign markets. We continue to lose our standard of living because Washington won't fight for equitable trade policies.

I don't have too much trouble with cars built in other countries if those countries buy ours. We have to buy Canadian-built cars because we sell a ton of cars to them. If I thoughts that the manufacturers in Mexico weren't just moving there to avoid environmental laws or to take advantage of the people, I would support buying Mexican made cars. If these plants are creating a stronger Mexican middle class, I am all for it. I am not sure that is happening. I really doubt that NAFTA is the real problem, although it gets the most press.

Heck , we ship cars from Lansing and Delta township to China now. It’s not a lot, but it’s a better deal than what happens with Korea and Japan.

Smitty 8:43 AM  

Bob, I also remember them testing the M-1 about 20 or 30 miles from where I lived during one winter.

That would have been awesome.

I have seen these things in action. I do not understand how anything survives. I sorta can't figure out why anybody has an inkling that they want to fight us. Sure, the guerilla thing works ok...but really. Our armor...our firepower...

meh. A post for another day.

Smitty 8:45 AM  

If these plants are creating a stronger Mexican middle class

I wish they were, because then NAFTA as a method to raise the standard of living everywhere, would make sense. But...not so much.

steves 11:49 AM  

Unfortunately these people had no choice, so really that's a false argument. If I could, I would only buy American made clothes, etc, and I used to, but that is nearly impossible now. Had someone vigorously defended that industry maybe we would have a choice.

I don't think it is a false argument. The "buy American cars" isn't anything new and was certainly around when there were more US made goods. Additionally, those groups made a stink, but I doubt that people outside of the effected industries cared enough.

There are still US clothing companies, but you have to do a little work to find them. Those people do have choice and certainly had a choice when those industries were more common here. My completely uninformed guess is that they were selective in their outrage and would rather pay less.

That would have been awesome.

It would have, but the testing areas were closed to the public. They did let in some reporters and showed some of the stuff on TV.

Smitty 2:42 PM  

There are still US clothing companies, but you have to do a little work to find them

It's the "do a little work" that matters and reduces choice. If you are unaware that any choice exists, you have no choice. I don't have to look hard at all to find foreign car dealers. Motorola is made in the U.S. but their phones are not available for certain carriers. That's choice? Sure, I could "choose" a carrier with crappier coverage and call-dropping issues just so I can get a made-in-America phone, but who wants to sacrifice quality?

Bob 3:58 PM  

My completely uninformed guess is that they were selective in their outrage and would rather pay less.

That may be true, but at least I put my money where my mouth was. I still buy New Balance shoes,(a few models still US made) Red Wing Shoes and Carhardt coats.

I also try to drink US and Michigan beer of course, but drink a Guiness on occasion.

I don't think Motorolas are made in the US anymore. My first one was, and it was awesome. It was so abused and just kept going.

The lamest arguement against buying an American car I usually hear is:

"It's not like the whole car is American made."..as if the 16% foreign content in my Chevy somehow makes their wholly imported Toyota just as good.

steves 4:00 PM  

Smitty, my point was that it wasn't that long ago that it was very easy to find products made in the USA. As for cars, that is getting harder, considering how many are made in other countries (even domestic brands) or are made with parts for other countries.

Sure, I could "choose" a carrier with crappier coverage and call-dropping issues just so I can get a made-in-America phone, but who wants to sacrifice quality?

I do the same thing. I am not going to buy something based just on where it is made. I prefer to spend my money on the best quality product. In some cases, that is foreign. I was just annoyed that, in the minds of some, I am a bad person for considering a foreign car.

Bob 4:12 PM  

I was just annoyed that, in the minds of some, I am a bad person for considering a foreign car.

You just don't love America.

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