I really haven't made up my mind whether or not a bailout of the American auto industry is a good idea. My gut tells me that it is not a good thing to do because the Big Three are just beginning to get their act together but they have a long way to go. They put all of their eggs in one basket (SUV's and trucks)while Asian car makers stormed the car market and Europeans cornered the luxury car market.
Living in Chicago, I don't have a need for a car so the only time I drive is when I rent. I have to admit that I like most of the GM cars that I've rented this past year. My favorite was the Saturn Aura. I also drove a Ford Envoy Hybrid to Kentucky and was happy with the gas mileage. American car companies are better in my estimation but $25 billion is a lot of money.
With enough strings attached, I would go along with a bailout. After giving AIG over $150 billion to cover bad paper, I see no reason why we shouldn't spend $25 billion to support 3 million American jobs. But the auto industry has some structural problems that it will have to address. It also needs to move faster with hybrids and electric cars.
As innovative as American companies are, it amazes me that we are so slow to adapt new technology. HDTV is just not catching on in America. I recall seeing HDTV in Japan when I was in the Navy and that was over 18 years ago. With cars, we somehow believe that getting 30 mpg is a big deal. We have the technology to have Hummer get 30 mpg so our cars should be getting 40 mpg at least.
2009 Saturn Aura
If I purchase a new car, it will be a hybrid and more than likely it will be a GM or Ford. But until then, I'm happy spending $20 a week for a bus pass. Owning a car would cost me an additional $500 a month. But I digress.
I am hopeful the Big Three can make a comeback and maybe it's time to think about bringing more manufacturing jobs back to America.
1. Do you support a bailout for the Big Three?
2. Is there an American made car that appeals to you?
3. Do you believe American made cars are on par with Toyota and Honda when it comes to quality?