12th Jun 2009, 09:25
"Yes, and the Fusion shared its platform with the Mazda 6"
"So?? Ford OWNS Mazda."
What??? That's sort of like saying that Chrysler used to own Daimler Benz.
To set the record straight, Ford owned 33% of Mazda, and is selling 20%, which would leave them a 13% share. 13% is not exactly a controlling share. Is it?
15th Jun 2009, 16:05
"The angry tone shown by many of those beating the "Buy American" drum is very troubling."
It would be a lot to expect that people who lose their jobs, homes, retirement won't be angry. So the anger itself doesn't bother me. My discomfort is that I don't know who to be angry at. The MBAs who wrote billions of dollars in unsound housing loans? The UAW? Congressmen who write legislation that promotes unsound business practices? Auto retirees that have gotten more in post-retirement compensation than they ever earned while working? Bondholders who got 10% returns? Foreign companies who set up factories not encumbered by retiree and healthcare costs? Voters who won't vote in national healthcare that would relieve that burden from the automakers? Auto workers making $30 an hour pushing brooms. CEOs with lucrative stock options flying in corporate jets?
The last people I feel like being angry at are the consumers who have bought whatever car best suited their needs. The newspapers have been reporting GM had a $1400 cost disadvantage per vehicle relative to the foreign makers. My friends in the business tell the me the real number was $2000. Most of us have had that to overcome when thinking about being good providers for our families. But supposedly with all the bankruptcy proceedings at GM and contract renegotiations at Ford, the difference will be down to a few hundred dollars.
I'm just glad it looks like Ford will survive all this and my Ford minivan and sedans are good reliable cars.
16th Jun 2009, 11:32
Yes, the downfall of our economy started with Ronald Reagan and his policies of allowing financial institutions to follow no regulations and W. put the final nail in our econom's coffin with his "Give everything to the rich" policies. And yes, U.S. automakers DID indeed get some rather exorbitant medical and retirement benefits. If our country provided universal healthcare, like every other truly civilized country on the planet U.S. automakers would have been in a far, far better shape financially.
With all that said, it STILL does not justify paying thousands MORE for a car manufactured by a foreign-owned company. I read a lot about how U.S. autos haven't been "cost competitive" with the Japanese and can only shake my head in confusion. When I bought my Ford Mustang new in 2007 I looked at a Nissan Altima coupe. It cost $25,000 and had no extras... NONE. It was a bare-bones 4-cylinder stick shift. I bought my top-of-the-line Mustang premium pony V-6 for $4680 LESS. It has automatic, leather, large alloy wheels with 55-series tires, satellite radio and every other option Ford offered. A 4-cylinder stick shift Accord goes for $28,000. You can buy a Lincoln MKZ for that with every conceivable option. So you'll have to excuse me if I seem a bit confused. I don't see any "cost disadvantage". What I see are people paying thousands MORE for LESS and hurting our economy in the process.
13th Jul 2009, 12:46
I test drove a Fusion on Saturday, and also a Honda Accord. Seems to me buying either one would help an American salesman bring home money, and an American dealer stay in business. And since that Accord was built in the USA, buying one would also support the jobs of a bunch of US citizens.
14th Jul 2009, 08:47
Re.:16th Jun 2009, 11:32.
I completely agree with this comment. One more reason for the sudden drop off in sales: cars last longer. Once the easy credit vanished and fear of job loss took hold of people, drivers keep their rides another year or even many years. Don't forget the trade-in values have crashed as well.
14th Jul 2009, 19:46
For the MILLIONTH TIME: Japanese and German car companies only employ NINE PERCENT of the people in auto-related jobs in the U.S!! American car companies employ NINETY-ONE PERCENT. When you buy a German or Japanese car, you HURT 91% of the U.S. citizens who work for U.S. owned companies... PERIOD. It DOES NOT MATTER if Honda builds cars in Mayberry USA and Ford build Fusions in the Antarctic!! Those are the figures, PURE AND SIMPLE. Buy a Honda, help 9% of U.S. auto related workers. Buy a Ford, help 91%. If you want to hurt 91% of our auto workers, you have that freedom, just admit it and don't pretend it doesn't matter.
Also, as a former Honda owner who now drives a world-class Fusion (which is rated higher in reliability than Accord) I can't imagine ANYONE who drove both choosing to pay $5000 MORE for the Accord. Sounds like a victim of ad hype to me.
If you just HAVE to throw away more money, you can go to virtually any Ford dealer's used car lot and buy a used Accord (or Camry) trade-in. That DOES help our economy, even though you are still paying more for an inferior car.
15th Jul 2009, 22:47
"Don't forget the trade-in values have crashed as well."
Not on ALL cars. Due to the popularity and phenomenally high ratings of the Ford Fusion, the resale value locally on our 2006 Fusion has actually gone UP by $500 to $800 since last December. As a car enthusiast I keep up with these things. I've been looking at prices of used Mustangs and even a 5-year-old, last generation model is bringing a huge percentage of what it sold for new here. My 2007 is worth only $2000 less now than I paid for it in 2007. That's way better than ANY Toyota or Honda can do, especially since they sell for thousands more than comparable domestics and have very poor warranties.