16th Mar 2007, 15:26

Comments like 12:06 seem to be becoming more and more common regarding imports (Toyota in particular). It is now blatantly obvious that the quality of domestics far surpasses that of all imports.

16th Mar 2007, 15:32

With regard to comment 12:45, ANY car apparently would be a better choice than Camry. Check out the 2006 Camry reviews and see how many GOOD ones there are (Hint: You can count them on your THUMBS!!)

16th Mar 2007, 15:37

Good! I am sure you can get a nice discount on a Ford anyday! Yay for prices that the gov't pays!.!.!

17th Mar 2007, 13:30

15:26 Domestics aren't, never were, and likely never will be nearly as good of a vehicle as almost any import. They've dug themselves into such a hole that they may not even exist in a few or several years.

I'm guessing best case scenario for them is that they will be overtaken by Toyota or Honda eventually. Honda can't make enough cars to satisfy demand, and the Big 3 keep coming up with worse and worse designs, and they can't get rid of them.

I'd hate to be someone with a lot of stock invested in Ford or GM; to watch them screw up so badly with cars like the HHR, and the Cobalt. The Cobalts look nice (design copied from Nissan) but it's still the same cheap material, low quality, corner cutting type of car that the Cavalier was, and the Cobalt won't sell anywhere close to as well as the Cavalier did.

And the HHR, that's a joke. Not even worth mentioning. It's almost as stupid looking as a PT Cruiser or a Dodge Nitro.

Honda is working on advancing the technology in it's already brilliant vtec engines, and the Big 3 offer up things like the Nitro and the HHR. It's pitiful.

18th Mar 2007, 06:57

1330...I would agree with your comments up to 5 years ago. The imports have diminished in overall quality and mechanically especially of late in my overall opinion. I am including Mercedes as well as I have had some of their lower end models. There are some very nice GM's besides the entry levels especially. The domestics I have recently bought have been exceptional. I didn't think I would buy GM as I was caught up in the import cachet for a while. But that faded quickly after seeing major mechanical woes with low mileage. Good luck.

22nd Mar 2007, 05:06

I usually just read here for the laughs and don't post, but the amount of misinformation here has left me puzzled. Yes Toyota is a Japanese automaker, but a large number of their share holders and workers are Americans. I am sorry where did you get your information that Toyota pays 30% less for laborers? Last time I checked they paid equally, I assume you where just making up numbers to make your argument seem better.

If you want to talk about unpatriotic, how many plants have Ford, GM, and Dodge closed in the U.S., so they can move them to Central and South America, where they can pay a lot less for workers? While we are looking at it, how many plants has Toyota and Honda opened in the U.S. in the last 10 years? Let's face facts Ford, GM, and Dodge are no longer American made, they are more Latin American made now.

22nd Mar 2007, 13:10

13:30 my experience with Toyota, Honda and Mercedes in the past 5 years has been the reverse. The quality meaning mechanical failures on drivetrains especially has caused us to switch to high end domestics mainly SUV's. I do not know if its due to the higher volume with imports in the past at the expense of quality. Many of us are not fuel driven, but expect vehicles to not be down so much in the shop. I know people want economy vehicles and sales will rise, but if it costs more mechanically its not worth it.

22nd Mar 2007, 14:36

To 3/17 13:30.

Go ahead, shred the PT Cruiser, HHR, and the Nitro. But admit that the Scion XB and Honda Element look just as stupid driving down the road. But you will perhaps say they are styling masterpieces, huh? It is always in the eye of the beholder.

22nd Mar 2007, 15:26

"how many plants have Ford, GM, and Dodge closed in the U.S., so they can move them to Central and South America, where they can pay a lot less for workers?"

The reason they were forced to do that is because they are being crushed by pensions, and needed to improve their profitability while being undercut by Japanese auto makers dumping underpriced vehicles on the market.

Stock price and shareholders dictate everything now; they only care about how much profit is being made. American car quality is great, and has been for decades. Their profits are not great, because they are the last bastion of the "this company will take care of me for life" mentality that the unions came to espouse and demand. These contracts were negotiated before the "leaner and meaner" days of the 1990's, and before it became clear that individuals needed to take charge of their own retirement plans.

At some point, the unions will have to realize that companies can't afford to pay pensions, and can't afford to pay $30/hour for semi-skilled labor in the age of globalization.

22nd Mar 2007, 16:03

Good luck with the resale value for your "quality SUVs". You should see all the classified ads around here for them - no one wants them.

22nd Mar 2007, 16:20

What makes everyone assume that all of these new 'domestics' are going to be reliable? They never were.

They might possibly be put together SLIGHTLY better than they used to be, thereby impressing former 'domestic' vehicle owners.

The threat of losing their jobs may have motivated the troops at GM and Ford to begin to care about the quality of their product. They're still not even close to par with Toyota and Honda.

The imports have always been great, and I don't know where some people get the idea that they've lost anything; I know plenty of people with brand new Toyota's and Honda's; nothing ever goes wrong, top notch like always.

Yeah, I know they've had a few more recalls lately, but the engines and drivetrains are still near perfect.

I'll stick with the imports that time has proven to be reliable. Honda and Toyota cars are simply better by design, defeating the Big 3 on the drawing board.

22nd Mar 2007, 17:28

The Big 3 have no choice left, but to sell their labor to the lowest bidder. They need to make a wagonload of money, fast, because everyone out there with their wits intact stopped buying their junk a long time ago, and now, despite their efforts to tweak the numbers, they reflect this trend clearly.

They didn't have the quality control and didn't spend the money to make them right before, so who out thinks that they'll start doing that now, with their massive losses and a need to sell as much crap as they can as fast as they can?

They'll continue to do what they've always done, which is slap together as much crap as they can, put a sticker on them, and roll them out on the showroom floor, squeaks, rattles, missing bolts, and misaligned and loose parts and all. And they'll tell you that "quality is job 1", or "everyone at GM is concerned about quality". And just maybe, some of the public will actually believe this, and they'll pull themselves out of the pit once again.

Well, to anyone out there who buys one, you deserve the problems you're going to have. A small amount of simple research will clearly show anyone that buying a Toyota, Nissan, or Honda are the obvious choices if you want a good car, SUV, or small-half ton pickup truck.