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GM is Blogging — Way Out in Front

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It’s finally happened. A car manufacturer has seen the power and benefits of blogs. Not long ago, I wondered where all of the automotive blogs were, and why car companies — usually so far ahead in technology and advertising than the rest of us — were lagging woefully behind.

General Motors put that question to rest when it launched its FastLane Blog this January. Ostensibly written by Bob Lutz, GM Vice Chairman, the auto maker’s blog is a welcome addition to the blog world. My “ostensibly written” phrase is not meant so much as criticism as an understanding that Lutz is not likely sitting at his laptop pecking out entries. After all, once you become an important figure at what was once the largest multi-national corporation in the world, you have underlings to do the pecking for you.

Nonetheless, Lutz’s FastLane is the savviest move GM could make. Whether Lutz himself is putting the words online, it’s clear that Lutz is deeply involved in the blog, and that’s a great thing for consumers and GM alike. Management of big companies have been far too removed from people who actually use their products, and that fact has been nearly fatal to American auto makers. Marketing, surveys, and advertising can only provide so much benefit. As I said before, why don’t car companies let people tell them just what they like or dislike about car features or design ideas? As GM will rapidly find, a blog is the perfect medium for that exchange.

I have great expectations of FastLane and hope GM will use it to listen to the pulse of the people. So far, even critical comments to posts have been left on the blog as Jackie Danicki points out in Detroit Blog City, which bodes well for establishing a real dialogue. Lutz and crew also linked to other automotive sources and blogs, one of which is AutoMuse, under the “Blogs We Like” section.

With GM leading the way, I will be brushing up on my German in preparation for BMW, Audi, VW, and Mercedes-Benz.

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About E L Eversman

  • http://www.exectech-va.com Hugh Conway

    WHY NO GM 70MPG DIESEL/ELECTRIC HYBRID IN THE US???

    I’m convinced GM management is so engrossed in egregious executive golden parachute & retirement schemes that they refuse to open the doors to our investors, who have tried repeatedly (in all contacts we’ve managed) to locate to penetrate into the ‘GM fortress’.

    We are trying to make a contact to import Opel Astra diesel/electric hybrids which deliver OVER 70MPG. GM refuses cooperate so we can establish dealerships in the Middle Atlantic market to sell and service this breakthrough product! Meanwhile, toyota and honda continue to steal weak-minded “green” consumer mindshare and eat GM’s lunch with their ‘hybrid’ junk which gets LESS MPG than my Saturn on the open road! ! !

    Anyone with a contact into higher-up channels at GM is INVITED to contact me so we might import the Astra diesel/electric hybrid, or at least their UK subsidiary (Vauxhall), which has the same diesel Astra without the hybrid. With the same core diesel power train perfected by the Germans, the Vauxhall GM subsidiary diesel vehicles still get 64.2MPG!!! That fuel mileage is MORE THAN double that of the sorry Japanese ‘hybrid’ units costing far more than the pure diesel (Vaushalls sell in the UK starting at only 9,900 Pounds Sterling). PS- the “green” consumers are being further burned when the Japanese “hybrids” deliver significantly less mileage than claimed (Popular Mechanics – January 2006)! ! ! It is amazing that they can sell so many of their 32MPG gas hybrids at such premium prices – when the Saturn and the Pontiac VIBE can BOTH exceed the mileage of the high-priced Japanese so-called hybrids now stealing US “green” (sucker) consumer mind share at the marketplace.

    Why this insane GM corporate deathwish – stonewalling investors who could eagerly import & sell either product line, and bury the Japanese units costing more, with ONE HALF the mileage???

    The only thing I can guess is that arab oil sheiks must have a HUGE controlling block of GM stock and thus the stonewalling. Or another possibly, some super-rich democrats & their foreign (soros) hedge fund allies may be working to keep only the high-consumption GM vehicles in the lineup and thus force further degradation in the US economy as the disasterous balance of payments shifts further to Japan and China – anything to grab power from the wimpy republicans.

    Any Real contact information [Deleted] would be Greatly Appreciated.