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Millbrook GM European Proving Grounds

European Proving Grounds Millbrook is a 700 acre facility about 40 miles north of London with test tracks and testing facilities for aerospace, military, vehicle production, driver training (Aston Martin), and real-time online vehicle tracking. Here is link to the Millbrook website. Construction began in 1968 for a smaller version …

Auto Body Tems

Automotive Body Terms Every automotive professional has been challenged by their lack of knowledge regarding this particular terminology. Complications arise when the same parts and sub-assemblies are referred to with different names even if everyone speaks English. Furthermore, every automotive technical professional has been frustrated by their lack of knowledge …

Low Speed Vehicles – Neighborhood Electric Vehicles

  LSV Low Speed Vehicles and NEV Neighborhood Electric Vehicles represent a classification for a Federally approved street-legal vehicle that is speed limited to 25 mph.  This United States Department of Transportation [USDOT] legislation was put into effect by Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard [FMVSS] 500 in 1998.  Simply put, NEV’s represent a …

Auto Battlefront 2011

Cruze, Focus & Elantra, The 2012 Models King Kong vs Godzilla vs Smog Monster — An epic battle is in the works for 2011 and it is definitely not some of my favorite from the classic 1950-1960’s sci-fi mega-characters. Chevrolet Cruze, Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra are the three 2012 models that are on the …

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Dictionary of Automotive Body Terms

August 29, 2009 Auto Manufacturer No Comments

Automotive Body Terms

Every automotive professional has been challenged by their lack of knowledge regarding this particular terminology.  Complications arise when the same parts and sub-assemblies are referred to with different names even if everyone speaks English.  Furthermore, every automotive technical professional has been frustrated by their lack of knowledge of automotive terminology.

Not only does terminology vary world-wide for assemblies and sub-assemblies among countries but from manufacturer to manufacturer a fact which is also evident when analyzing GM, Ford, and Chrysler that respectfully reside in Warren, Dearborn and Auburn Hills, Michigan.

  • Backlight – glass in rear window opening
  • Belt Line – lower boundary of the side window daylight opening (DLO)
  • Black Box – a design, development, and build program that a supplier completes with almost no supervision by the car company (combined radio and sound system would be an example of this type of program).
  • Body-in-White – bare metal shell of the body including doors and deck lid prior to paint and trim
  • Boot – folding top storage area (convertible).
  • Center Pillar – box construction used on four door bodies forming the front door body lock pillar and rear door body hinge pillar.  Also known as the “B” pillar.
  • C.K.D. – completely knocked down or disassembled.
  • Crease Line – discernible line in body exterior skin caused by abrupt change in surface.
  • … Continue Reading

Motors Liquidation Company = The Old GM

August 26, 2009 Auto Manufacturer No Comments

Motors Liquidation Logo

Motors Liquidation Company

Motors Liquidation AGM filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy on June 1, 2009 and GM officially changed its name to Motors Liquidation Company.

On June 1, 2009 Motors Liquidation Company (formerly General Motors Corporation) and certain of its subsidiaries filed a voluntary petition seeking relief under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code.

For bankruptcy court documents, please visit www.motorsliquidationdocket.com.

If you are accustomed to looking at the GM stock price you will find Motors Liquidation at MTLQQ

Some Not So Fine Print … Continue Reading

Auto Ramblings

National Automobile Dealers Association

Car Allowance Rebate SystemNADA asked the Federal Government on August 19, 2009 to suspend the CARS Cash for Clunkers Program because, by their research, the $3B has been exhausted.

It is clear that the CARS program has lifted vehicle production quotas, especially for fuel efficient vehicles.  Automotive Tribune is of the opinion that winding the CARS program down will result in a long term Federal program that will encourage purchase of high mileage vehicles.

‘Old Chrysler’ Creditors Sue Daimler Over Assets

chryslerDaimler still owns 19.9% of Chrysler.  However, since the failed “Merger of Equals” things have again started to heat up.  It is clear that a great deal of discontent is evident because of the Chrysler meltdown.  Watching this litigation will definitely produce another round of very nasty automotive finger pointing.  There will be plenty of media coverage … stay tuned.

Cash For Clunkers Program

Car Allowance Rebate System = Cash For Clunkers Program

Car Allowance Rebate SystemCash for clunkers may or may not be the correct terminology for this Federal Program, depending on what you are bringing to the dealership.  However, having the opportunity to receive some Federal financial assistance to purchase a replacement vehicle has motivated many customers to come into dealerships.

What Is The Effect

Cash For Clunkers BannerUS auto sales totaled 4.8 million units in the first half of the year which calculates to about 800,000 vehicles per month.  With the CARS program in place sales jumped to 1M vehicles in July.  Going from 800k to 1M represents a 25% increase in sales for the month.

$3500 to $4500

CARS Program information is pretty well explained explained and HERE is the Simple Explanation.  Or, if you want to review the complete US Department of Transportation Code of Federal Regulations then HERE is the 136 page Detailed Explanation.

… Continue Reading

You Can Communicate With GM

You Can Communicate Directly With GM

Henderson GM Web SiteGM has set up a web site link where you can actually communicate with CEO Fritz Henderson.  This web site provides a “Corporate View” for GM at www.GM.com and drilling into the site gets to Mr. Henderson’s direct link and includes contemporary videos with his message, vehicles coming on-line now, and a very significant video with the pilot build for the Volt.

Is This Significant?  Yes!

Auto manufacturers are elusive.  Communication of any type to the auto manufacturer is always filtered, diverted, re-routed, and potentially a waste of time.  However, one good thing that has come out of the Structured Bankruptcy is that GM is now more transparent. 

Spend a few minutes with this site.  You will see an openness that has never been in place before.  Will this last?  Is this just a bunch of “smoke and mirrors”.  Who knows???  But, for now there appears to be a realistic effort for communication.

As a follower of the Tribune if you have some success or failure of the GM Link let us know.

Bob Lutz Has A New Role

GM’s “Car Guy” Will Not Retire

Bob Lutz will continue to have an active role in the New GM.  This is important news 

The Lee Iacocca Model

GM because Lutz is the one guy that absolutely delivers and his new role will be to Deliver GM to the customer!

What exactly will Bob Lutz new role be … well that seems to be unclear.  However, what is clear is that A) his strong character type and B) USA’s need to be comfortable with GM.  Putting together A & B results in a classic Lee Iacocca that can be the voice of the New GM.

If you can find a better car then buy it … in the best of Lee Iacocca.

GM and America need Bob Lutz.  He is the one leader that can deliver comfortability and quality assurance for GM.  We will all be watching for the media update.

Random Photos From Automotive Tribune Site

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Richard Kubis Explains Solar Thermal Hybrid Automobile