Capt. John Gregory Brannon, USA, logistics officer on the Border Transition Team in Tal Afar, Iraq, has been named the Editor’s Choice for March for his comments in response to Jim Murphy’s column “MARK TO MARKET: GM Pins Its Hopes On A Volt Out Of The Blue.”
For his insightful comments, Brannon wins a Garmin Nuvi.
Read Brannon’s comments:
TALK BACK: Today’s Cars Lack Character Appeal
Why is General Motors failing?
Simple: They don’t make cars Americans want to buy anymore.
Seriously, ask yourself, “What car made today would I want to go drag out of junk yard and restore in 20 years?”
Past possible answers include the 1975 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am, 1970 Pontiac GTO convertible and 1969 Chevrolet Camaro.
The point is, Americans love cars that are sexy, fast, and have character. And if you could make one that gets 60 miles on a single gallon of gas, or better yet, doesn’t use any gas whatsoever, all the better.
Another problem. Sales and marketing. Who buys the aforementioned cars? Young guys with money burning a hole in their pockets. And who epitomizes that target audience? The American military. I’m a captain in the U.S. Army. Every time I go to the Post Exchange, I see advertisements for Ford’s military incentives program.
Pontiac 1970 LeMans
|1970 Pontiac LeMans
Last week there was actually a guy there who sat down at a kiosk with a computer and was taking orders for new Ford Mustangs and F-150s.
I asked him, “Does GM have a similar program? I’d really like to buy a new Corvette or a new Silverado.”
His reply, “No, GM doesn’t really care about our soldiers.”
So what’s a guy like me, with money burning a hole in his pocket to do? I bought a Sierra Yellow, 1970 Pontiac LeMans sport convertible. I’m spending some $50,000 having it restored (and cloned into a GTO) while I’m in Iraq, and it will be ready for me when I get home this October. That’s $50,000 that could have been in the pocket of GM on a new car, if only they’d make something with character.