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This is the most interesting news I have read in a long time. In America many conservatives feel that labor unions bankrupted Detroit and sighed with relief when labor unions in America went into decline. In Germany workers have the right to be represented in management decisions and the German car industry is prosperous. But there is a fundamental difference between American and German workers in their attitude towards their employers and their jobs. German workers, it seems, long for security above all else sacrificing improving standards of living (pay raises) while the American workers prefer instant gratification. By the fate of Detroit vs. German car production centers it would seem that the German model works better. BTW, there are a huge number of robots in German car factories which is the opposite of featherbedding that has been so prevalent in American labor relations.

It seems as if in Germany labor relations are more labor-management team work than labor and management teams clashing.


Would union cost Tennessee VW plant a new line? Senator and automaker at odds
Sen. Bob Corker is trying to convince workers at VW's assembly plant in Tennessee that a vote to unionize could cost them the manufacturing line for a new vehicle. VW says that's not the case.
By Mark Guarino
11 hours ago

German automaker Volkswagen is finding itself in the unusual position of having to answer to critics who say the company should oppose efforts by the United Auto Workers to unionize its Chattanooga, Tenn., assembly plant. If successful, it would be the first unionized automotive assembly plant in the South.


http://news.yahoo.com/union-cost-tennessee-vw-plant-line-sen...

Denny Schlesinger
 

I've taken an interest in Germany lately because I'm planning on visiting my country of birth for the first time in 50 years and Berlin first time ever since we left when I was a baby.
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<< In Germany workers have the right to be represented in management decisions and the German car industry is prosperous. >>

Don't leave out the important stuff....

......they make BMW, Audi, Porsche, and Mercedes automobiles.



Alan
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Don't leave out the important stuff....

......they make BMW, Audi, Porsche, and Mercedes automobiles.


Alan



Hmmmm... and Beetles. Why can't Detroit make a quality car? Tesla seems to be doing it.

Denny Schlesinger
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<< Why can't Detroit make a quality car? >>

We're all about trucks here, I guess. Must be a cultural thing.



Alan
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Why can't Detroit make a quality car? Tesla seems to be doing it.

When was the last time you owned an American car? Ford, for one, is making very good cars these days.
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When was the last time you owned an American car?

It's been a while but it's Alan who thinks Detroit can't touch German luxury cars.

My last American car was a Dodge Dart with a V-8 that was way too heavy for the front suspension which kept breaking until a Colombian mechanic beefed it up with solder. Never had a problem with the suspension again but the body rusted. It got so bad I just patched up the holes with papier mache and reinforced the floor with some sort of sheeting and tar. When the engine gave out (the car was about 18 years old by then) I sold it for parts. My Toyota Corolla is now 20 years old and it doesn't know what rust is. ;) It must be the lowest maintenance car I have ever owned.

While in the US in the late 1980s I rented a lot of cars (mostly mid-sized) and I was not impressed by any American brand. My cousin had a Ford Taurus and he swore it was the best thing since sliced bread. I never drove a Taurus so I wouldn't know.

As for driving fun my 1964 Corvette Stingray tops the list followed by a Fiat 125 and the Corolla.

Denny Schlesinger
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When was the last time you owned an American car?

In my travels I have learned there are wide regional differences in opinion on this point.

In the midwest where many US cars are made, you get strong support for buy American. In the East and West there is strong preference for imports.

Detroit keeps telling us they now make best in class vehicles after the bankruptcy era allowed them to drop too much capacity and too many products to support properly. Independent reviewers like Consumer Reports seem to agree. But I wonder if the final verdict is in from consumers?

If American made autos are well designed, well made, and hold up well, they will earn their kudos.
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If American made autos are well designed, well made, and hold up well, they will earn their kudos.

There is also a lot of this which is "style". There are places with a high density of pickups. Outside of CA, I don't think many of those are import and even in CA, the work vehicles are often domestic. There are places where compactness is valued. There are places where fun to drive is valued ... how can it be fun to drive in the Midwest where all the roads are straight? I.e., there is a lot of this driven by the type of vehicle being made rather than the actual quality of the vehicle, as if that were the only differentiator.
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I wouldn't seriously suggest that American cars have anything to compete with a high-end (or even middle of their range) BMW or Mercedes, I just don't know much about that end of the spectrum. For main-stream mid-sized cars choosing between say a Ford Fusion and a Toyota Camry or Honda Accord you probably won't find a lot to choose among them on quality.
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Things have changed since the days of the Dart. 8-)

My Toyota Corolla is now 20 years old and it doesn't know what rust is. ;) It must be the lowest maintenance car I have ever owned.

Things have changed since my Corolla too. My first new car was a 1976 Corolla. Other than regular maintenance the only repair a mechanic did was replace one rear wheel bearing. But it had some serious rust problems. One day I pulled on the hand break when I parked and ripped it right out of the drive tunnel. I sold it after about 10 years and 128K miles figuring, since nothing has broken yet everything was due to break. The guy who I sold it to had the frame crack while driving on the highway - rusted through - and abandoned it on the side of the road. It is worth noting that around here they salt the roads when it snows, something pretty regular around here.
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It doesn't snow around here but the sea is pretty salty. ;)

Maybe they didn't tar your Corolla but mine has tar to spare.

Deny Schlesinger
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There is apparently a difference in perception to actual quality of build.

http://consumerreports.org/cro/2012/10/most-reliable-new-car...

Ford next to last based on actual owners' input.

http://editorial.autos.msn.com/consumer-reports-auto-reliabi...

Rob
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......they make BMW, Audi, Porsche, and Mercedes automobiles.

Which makes them reliably more expensive.

One of my favorite examples.

http://carsort.com/compare/Porsche-911-Turbo-vs-Ford-Mustang...

Or if your looking to spend a little less...

http://carsort.com/compare/Porsche-Cayman-vs-Ford-Mustang

Then there is the Copra 302 with it's nifty option.

http://www.trackey.ford.com/trackey/

Like I said, reliably more expensive. :<)

B
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Let's face it you wouldn't be having this conversation if you weren't American. American cars are cheaper in America. Americans think the car is an All American All Star affair buying anything else is considered un-american.
The only US car maker cars sold outside US in Europe etc are basically European made non American models.
A
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Let's face it you wouldn't be having this conversation if you weren't American.

Oh BS, go ahead and explain to me what makes the Porsche worth 95K more than the Mustang. I'll concede it's a better car, but not for the money, not even close. Unless that is you place value on simply showing others that you can afford one which by extension makes you a superior person. In reality it's a yuppified version of some moron buying a pit bull or a gun and thinking that makes him a tough guy.

Americans think the car is an All American All Star affair buying anything else is considered un-american.

Yeah sure, that explains why the Camry has been the best selling car in the US for over a decade.

B

PS Most people, including most owners of both cars, would wet their pants if they drove them 150 MPH.
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And by the way, the news this am says the union at VW Chattanooga was voted down by a wide margin. Lost by over 100 votes out of over 1100 cast.
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Let's face it you wouldn't be having this conversation if you weren't American.

Oh BS, go ahead and explain to me what makes the Porsche worth 95K more than the Mustang.

Because of the breathtaking arrogance you just exhibited which is what got the American car industry into a rut of producing rubbish products for a generation.

The consumer doesn't have to justify why it prefers a more expensive German car on the other hand American car manufacturers need to convince the consumer why their cars hold value (if they want to sell any).

For a generation American cars have been rubbish and for several generations German cars have been outstanding. That affords them a premium and American cars a discount.

The point is American cars have been too poor quality to be considered period - forget about the price value argument.

It took 10 years+ for Americans to stop being nationalistic about Toyota stealing their market share talking about protecting jobs and waiving flags around until they accepted that Toyota actually built better cars that don't break down. American manufacturers have been beaten in almost every segment except the pick up which is not really a vehicle the rest of the world actually buys.

As far as I am concerned the American car industry had what was coming to them. They built too low quality, too gas gazzling too American styled products for too long in a globalised market place. It took foreign competition and west coast outsiders like Tesla to wake them up.

The fact is if someone wants a Porsche you couldn't even give a mustang away to them.

I find it incredible in the UK where after WW2 a generation wouldn't even look at a German or Japanese car and bought British or American vehicles. Within one or two generations German and Japanese dominate the market and the US cars sold in UK are European models.

Please don't shoot the messenger - I don't own a car right now, however I know if I wanted to buy one it would probably be German or Tesla.

A
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if I wanted to buy one it would probably be German or Tesla.

Meanwhile, I morn the death of Saab. Don't know what I will do when I have to replace the current one.
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I guess Volvo is the nearest positioning in the world of safety but I know what you mean.
A
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Volvo is now in Chinese hands, Geely, who also now make London taxi cabs

http://eandt.theiet.org/news/2013/feb/london-cabs.cfm

Denny Schlesinger
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The point is American cars have been too poor quality to be considered period - forget about the price value argument.

Well it apparently matters to someone.:<)

http://social.rides.com/news/418/ford-mustang-most-popular-a...

B
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Volvo under Geely is more in control than it was under Ford. All current platforms are inherited from Ford, but Volvo is moving a single platform business model (Mazda is headed this direction too). All vehicles will have same basic chassis and the same basic engine (I4 turbo) with superchargers and electric assist added to upper levels. Both the engine and chassis are Volvo designs. The 2015 Volvo lineup will be far more Swedish than it's been for a long time.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/09/automobiles/volvo-plan-1-p...
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That's my point, 1965 - back when American cars were great. Otherwise in the real world out on the road I think you will find more BMWs and Beetles than Mustangs currently in Europe.
a
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I think you will find more BMWs and Beetles than Mustangs currently in Europe.

Well duh, they're made in Europe, you will find more Chevys & Fords made in America as well.

Doesn't really matter, it is what it is.

Now, who makes better chewing gum America or Singapore? :<)

B
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Lol. I give you that one man - hands down.
Ant
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replaced it with a 1985 Mazda 626 -- kept and drove for twelve years until 1995.

It appears you need to replace your calculator as well. (Or get a third set of fingers.)

B
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