Is GM Making a Big Move Towards Going Green?

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In summary: You realize of course that this means when the Democrats pass higher CAFE standards that the auto industry will not object. Not going to look good for the Republicans. If competition is already forcing GM into the production of fuel-efficient cars, why are higher CAFE standards even necessary?GM unveils new hybrid models for 2008 and announces plan to develop plug-in hybrid. The new models are the Saturn VUE Green Line hybrid and the Chevrolet Malibu hybrid. The Saturn VUE Green Line hybrid will be updated for the 2008 model year and will be available in a plug-in version. The Chevrolet Malibu hybrid will also be updated for the 2008 model year and will be available in a plug-in version.
  • #1

Ivan Seeking

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GM unveils new hybrid models for 2008 and announces plan to develop plug-in hybrid

...Following an environmentally-themed speech from GM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rick Wagoner, who said the automaker would begin work on a plug-in version of the Saturn VUE Green Line hybrid, the automaker unveiled three new hybrid models for the 2008 model year at the L.A. Auto Show media preview. [continued]
http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061129/UPDATE/611290443 [Broken]
 
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You realize of course that this means when the Democrats pass higher CAFE standards that the auto industry will not object. Not going to look good for the Republicans.

To some extent this is GM finally interpreting the handwriting written on the wall. With Toyata kicking their butt they had to respond. The irony is that had they stood behind and marketed the EV1, instead of pushing the Hummer they would be pwning the industry right now. A good example of short sightedness leading to dead ends.

I wonder where GM plans to build these cars?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saturn_VUE

The VUE will be redesigned for the 2008 model year. Production was rumored to move to Ramos Arizpe, Mexico, where the HHR is produced. Recently, it was reported that this would not be the case[1], with the next generation VUE being built at an undisclosed U.S. plant instead.

It would sure be nice to see GM employ more Americans.
 
  • #3
Skyhunter said:
You realize of course that this means when the Democrats pass higher CAFE standards that the auto industry will not object. Not going to look good for the Republicans.
It might not matter if the government keeps letting the auto industry cheat. Look at the PT Cruiser. It's a little wagon built on a Neon chassis. Somehow, Dodge/Chrysler was allowed to call it a truck, and average its fuel economy in with the Ram truck series to avoid having to produce more fuel-efficient trucks. It's one thing to pass regulations, and another entirely to make them difficult to circumvent.
 
  • #4
Skyhunter said:
I wonder where GM plans to build these cars?

It would sure be nice to see GM employ more Americans.
Since GM's future economic viability is very much in doubt, "nice" cannot be a consideration.
 
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turbo-1 said:
It might not matter if the government keeps letting the auto industry cheat. Look at the PT Cruiser. It's a little wagon built on a Neon chassis. Somehow, Dodge/Chrysler was allowed to call it a truck, and average its fuel economy in with the Ram truck series to avoid having to produce more fuel-efficient trucks. It's one thing to pass regulations, and another entirely to make them difficult to circumvent.
Heh, I didn't know that (though it doesn't surprise me). As with gun regulations (what is an "assault weapon"?), it is often easy to circumvent regulations. Keeping them in line requires vigilance, which requires a willingness to act, which is something beaurocratic governments do not posess.

Perhaps the answer would have to be some sort of inspector general in charge of making such determinations (similar to the way building permits are issued). Such a person is empowered to make judgement calls to make the reality of a design fit with the intent of a law. There are obvious downsides to that, though.
 
  • #6
turbo-1 said:
It might not matter if the government keeps letting the auto industry cheat. Look at the PT Cruiser. It's a little wagon built on a Neon chassis. Somehow, Dodge/Chrysler was allowed to call it a truck, and average its fuel economy in with the Ram truck series to avoid having to produce more fuel-efficient trucks. It's one thing to pass regulations, and another entirely to make them difficult to circumvent.

Somehow they convinced the government that the PT Cruiser was a crossover vehicle and for some mysterious reason that made it a truck.:confused:

Ford did the same thing with the Freestar.
 
  • #7
Skyhunter said:
You realize of course that this means when the Democrats pass higher CAFE standards that the auto industry will not object. Not going to look good for the Republicans.
How does that follow? If competition is already forcing GM into the production of fuel-efficient cars, why are higher CAFE standards even necessary?

Environmental and economic concerns can align. And when an industry shifts to a strategy more favorable to the environment, it is not necessarily a concession by capitalists and Republicans.

With the auto industry's hybrid/electric cars and Boeing's new 787, the top priority was the almighty dollar, make no mistake. But by improving fuel efficiency to produce the most marketable products, these corporations also decreased the impact on the environment. Yes, these corporations might not object to tougher fuel regulations, as the market is already regulating them, but this isn't a setback for Republicans.

For instance: most shipping companies have drastically cut paper consumption by switching to electronic tracking. So this somehow means that if there were a movement in Congress to pass stricter regulations governing the consumption of paper products, the shipping industry would not object; and it would not look good for Republicans?!

There have been extreme cases of nitpicking over current events of late. When there is even the slightest indicator of a failure of the Republican party, it is sure to show up here.

What's the scoop on the economic sanctions placed on North Korea?
turbo-1 said:
What does Trent Lott's ascendancy to minority whip mean?
Rach3 said:
There are more, but I think you get the point.

It is interesting to note that there has been no mention of Murtha's flop in his run for House majority leader or Alcee Hasting's failed bid for chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. The search terms for https://www.physicsforums.com/search.php?searchid=522416 [Broken] are telling. The cynic in me wanted to start a thread speculating that these events showed a lethal divide in the Democratic majority, but I decided against it.
 
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  • #8
turbo-1 said:
It might not matter if the government keeps letting the auto industry cheat. Look at the PT Cruiser. It's a little wagon built on a Neon chassis. Somehow, Dodge/Chrysler was allowed to call it a truck, and average its fuel economy in with the Ram truck series to avoid having to produce more fuel-efficient trucks. It's one thing to pass regulations, and another entirely to make them difficult to circumvent.

That is a good point.

With Barbara Boxer as Environmental & Public Works Committee Chair, I think that regulations will be somewhat more robust than in the past. She tried and failed to add a simple provision to exclude luxury SUV's from the small business tax credit. (Remember the $2000 hybrid tax incentive -vs- the $100,000 Hummer incentive.) Now with the Republicans in the minority, and the neo-nuts in the extreme minority, we just might be able to get good CAFE legislation passed.

The major source, over half, of the pollution in the Bay Area is caused by automobiles. One of the side benefits of fuel economy is that when a vehicle burns less fuel, it generates less pollution.
 

1. What does GM going green mean?

GM going green refers to General Motors' efforts to become more environmentally sustainable and reduce their carbon footprint. This involves implementing more efficient and environmentally-friendly practices in their manufacturing processes, as well as developing and producing electric and hybrid vehicles.

2. Why is GM going green important?

GM going green is important because it helps to reduce the negative impact of the automotive industry on the environment. By using more sustainable practices and producing electric and hybrid vehicles, GM can help to decrease air and water pollution, conserve natural resources, and mitigate the effects of climate change.

3. How is GM going green different from other car companies?

GM going green is different from other car companies in that it was the first major automotive company to make a commitment to using 100% renewable energy in all of its operations. GM also has a wide range of electric and hybrid vehicle options, including the Chevrolet Bolt EV and the Cadillac ELR, which sets it apart from many other car companies.

4. What challenges has GM faced in going green?

One of the main challenges GM has faced in going green is the high cost of implementing sustainable practices and producing electric and hybrid vehicles. Additionally, transitioning to renewable energy sources can be difficult and require significant investments. However, GM has made a commitment to overcome these challenges and continue to make progress towards their sustainability goals.

5. How can I support GM's efforts to go green?

There are several ways you can support GM's efforts to go green. One way is to consider purchasing an electric or hybrid vehicle from GM, as this helps to reduce the demand for traditional gas-powered cars. You can also support GM by following their progress and sharing information about their sustainability efforts with others. Additionally, making small changes in your own daily habits, such as reducing energy consumption and recycling, can also contribute to a more sustainable future for all.

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