Monday, January 03, 2005

 

Toyota To Overtake DCX For #3 Spot... Eventually

Contining its roll towards the top of the automotive foodchain, Toyota is currently projected to overtake DCX as the #3 car manufacturer in US sales by 2009. But what's even more interesting is that Toyota may challenge GM for the world's top spot as soon as 2006. Go take a look at a 20-year-old Corolla and honestly ask yourself if anyone in their right mind would have seen this coming a couple of decades ago.

GM and Ford, on the other hand, have a year of tightened profits (can they really get any tighter?) to look forward to, as well as a staggering $450 billion in shared debt. The article goes on to state that 2005 should represent the low point in GM's product cycle, with things picking up in the following year. But isn't GM supposedly right in the middle of a huge product roll-out? If so, one would think that they'd see the effects of that by this coming year. After all, it can probably be said that Ford entered their own crisis around the same time, and we've already seen signs of their turn-around in the F-150, the Mustang, in the Mazda and Volvo groups, and to a much lesser extent in the Five Hundred (which, if not for the 300C, would likely be the best American sedan in ages). It's now been 3+ years since Bob Lutz came on board - one would think that he'd be able to turn things around by now. Of course, it isn't Lutz's fault; we're likely seeing just how resistant to change the GM culture really is. Let's hope they can turn things around, and damn quickly.

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