Mi, mi, mi, mi (Post #141) 4/24/2009

That sound you hear is the proverbial fat lady warming up.

Chrysler and GM are about to pull the golden parachutes of bankruptcy. Sadly Chrysler is pulling their chute about 5 minutes after impact with the ground. GM is going to pull theirs about 400 feet up and if they can get Saturn, Pontiac, Hummer, and Saab unloaded they might not break their legs on impact.

GM is going to kill Pontiac on Monday. They have flirted with selling the Hummer brand (with no success), Saab (again the same) and Saturn has a real chance in the future with it being sold to the Telesto Ventures (Bob Howard auto group and some friends).

Oklahomans are excited about this I can tell you. It would be a boom for the state if the investment group brought Saturn corporate here. It would hopefully save the Saturn Cup which is played in Norman and is the closest Major League Soccer match to my house each year. There was no match this year due to the down turn. But even better, it would save a very popular brand from the shackles of doom, if they continued to be part of GM, or worse killed out right.

Chrysler. Where do we start? I have owned a number of Dodge/Chrysler vehicles over the years and for the most part they weren’t Chevy’s. I say that with love in my heart, seriously. They have always seemed a bit different from “normal” cars, or let us say the other of the Big Three, if you asked me. So now in the modern era and we have a car company that is still building minivans and trying to revive the muscle car. WHAT THE HELL? Adaptation is the thing that allows a species to advance. Failure to adapt, well I think we all know what happens then. Good luck with that Chrysler, you’re screwed.

So what the hell does all this have to do with Land Rovers in Oklahoma? Well I’ll tell you…NOT A DAMN THING. Well, not a damn thing, if you ignore the hard times of the auto brands worldwide. Land Rover is right there with them. Land Rover as everyone knows was sold to Tata group. Big promises were made, everyone walked away from the table with smiles on their faces. A year later nothing has really changed for Land Rover on the surface. Can we dare to say that selling Land Rover and Jaguar may have saved Ford? Who knows. Ford is lighter and has fared far better than the other two of the former Big Three.

What will Tata do with Land Rover? I’m sure the Tata group is still busy reading blueprints to borrow technologies for use in their cars and trucks. Much like Ford “borrowed” the kick step from the Land Rover Discovery last year for their pickup trucks. I saw it on a TV commercial but can’t seem to find it now to link. Suffice to say Tata will benefit from the technology, while Land Rover will…idle. And by idle I mean build more of the same.

The cost of gasoline is down this year. According to the idiots that “predict” gas prices it shouldn’t rise above 3.00$(US) this summer. Who knows what it will actually do, and who cares. America is moving ever so slowly toward a greener and more environmentally friendly auto market. And the companies that can adapt with the market place should survive.

There are going to be casualties in this market, and rightly so. Let us just hope that our beloved Land Rovers will not, in the next 10 years be like Studebakers in 1989. History is sometimes funny like that. Repeating it’s self and all.

Happy Rovering.