“Prius headlamp troubles could dim Toyota brand’s reputation,” writes Jean Halliday in today’s Advertising Age and Automotive News. I’ve suggested that manufacturers pick up the cost of common problems out of warranty. That said, this story seems driven more by an agenda than by the facts. The issue: the optional HID headlights of the circa-2006 Prius are prone to turning… More →
The emails we receive suggest that many people misunderstand TrueDelta and its research process. Here I’ll attempt to address the most common misunderstandings. Misunderstanding #1: TrueDelta wants survey responses many times a month. Reality: We usually only need a survey response the first month you’re eligible to participate, then at the end of every quarter after that (four times a… More →
I’ve written before that Detroit needs to reduce the risk of buying its cars by providing proper customer care. Unfortunately, I recently learned that Ford might be cutting back on the out-of-warranty assistance it provides to customers. While visiting a close friend of my wife, we learned that her husband’s truck had an electronic controller in its 4WD system fail… More →
For 2010 both Buick and Ford are seeking to regain ground in the upper-midsize sedan segment. In Buick’s case, the brand’s future in the U.S. could well hinge on the success of the thoroughly redesigned LaCrosse. And Ford needs the new Taurus to succeed, lest it also be forced into bankruptcy. Traditionally Buick has matched off against Mercury, not Ford.… More →
When Honda first launched the 2010 Insight hybrid, I compared its price to the 2009 Toyota Prius because the 2010 was not yet available. Honda has been pitching the Insight as a more affordable hybrid, but how much do you save? Not much, I then concluded. But was it a fair comparison, since the 2009 Prius was in its’s final… More →
I needed to drive my family 800 miles (and back) to visit my in-laws. None of my cars are large enough, so I rented a minivan from Alamo. They had by far the best rate. Alamo gave me the choice of any car in their minivan lane. Aside from a Dodge Grand Caravan and a Toyota Sienna, they also had… More →
GM added owner loyalty bonuses for many models this month, but reduced the regular rebate by the same amount. So while people who currently own a GM car can get as large a rebate as last month, those who don’t are often being offered $1,000 to $1,500 less. This doesn’t strike me as a good way to sell more cars.
Following GM’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing today, the Internet has been flooded with explanations of GM’s decline. Here’s mine… Nearly everything wrong with GM can be traced to one source: GM’s senior management has long acted as if it should make all important decisions, and that everyone else involved–middle management, workers, suppliers, dealers–should simply execute their orders. This essentially tossed… More →