Jan. 2010 - Obama's GM Bailout: by Joel Anderson
Mike Gaddis has been a mechanic for over 40 years, having worked on everything from Maserati's to Volkswagens and everything in between for private customers and companies. I asked Mike about the Economic Bail Out, GM Cars (and trucks) and the future of the auto industry, which now lags behind that of China.
"Well... I’m a GM fan more than anything, but the CEO's are getting a twelve million dollar bonus for what ? And the company is going under...c'mon....somebody is bullshitting somebody... if they give them the loans.... When they start cutting the fat out of a company they ought to start at the top. That would save the company major bucks," said Mechanic Mike Gaddis.
Mike doesn’t believe General Motors and the other big auto makers can’t make it because people aren’t buying their cars. "I don’t think so...... I see an awful lot of GM cars out there on the road, and they make exciting cars to drive, the Cadillac, their little sport car, that is on the Corvette platform... that thing is baaaad. Look around, they're not hurting for vehicles on the road. GM has everything from Hummers to Saab (owned by GM), Olds, Pontiac..... Look at the Hummer it's one of the best 4 wheelers you can buy for towing, any kind of job you want to do it will do it.
The companies are huge, you know Allison (tractors), all the Delco stuff is all General Motors from the air compressors that cool the air in your car...they make all that stuff." For Mike, it's actually an exciting time for auto technologies as far as the really high tech engineering going into the engines and the cars themselves. "They are doing more, running cleaner, getting better economy, no pollution and now they can make them with horsepower!
Their trucks...they're sporty looking...I'd LOVE to have a new Chevy pickup. they make all these, you know, cool cars like the Monte Carlo SS, the Corvette.... Mike feels the GM SUV's are among the best on the road for power and fuel efficiency. "Also the Tahoe with the flex fuel that can run on different fuels... and they're also trying to make green cars that can run on anything. I guess they're doing a really good job as far as I can see... You can take a Tahoe and get 20 miles per gallon.
I think that GM can compete with the Japanese cars hands down," Mike continued. "Americans aren't making throwaway cars anymore like in the late 70s.... Vegas and Pintos.... You didn’t fix them when they broke, you just threw them away and bought a new one. They weren't made to be fixed...the doors and hatches were welded on, the hood too... there was no adjustment. They were just making trash cars," said Mike. "I know they are on top of things now... As far as I can see there's some good quality in Chevy's. They go a long time... you can put a lot of miles on them. I see them with 250,000 miles and they still run good and drive good....
Chevy is competitive with anybody. "You can call up and order a full-on race motor, right in the crate, and they will deliver it to your door. What other company does that? And they have such a variety of engines, you can buy from a complete 4-cylinder economy motor to a fire breathing 500 cubic inch big block, as complete as you want it. You just say what you want done to it and they’ll do it.
"In the 70s and early 80s they lost all that. To make them burn clean.... they lost all the horsepower. Your dad’s station wagon would blow off your new Camaro or Corvette... it kind of pissed you off... they were just dogs. That's when they were sticking the catalytic converters on... around 1975 and in that era...tha's when the horsepower went...
Mike said GM has made great improvements in quality control in all their products. "Now, with my Corvette, when it was in the assembly line, each of the workers had a code that they put on the car saying what they've done, what they've assembled or manufactured. So in the future if there's any problem, they can go right back to that guy. These cars aren't the flimsy fragile little cars that everyone thinks they are. They run forever if you do the maintenance on them. I just enjoy the Corvette because it drives goooood. It never ceases to amaze me. I wouldn't be afraid to drive this car anywhere.
"I do think the bailout is good, they need to do something, but I think they also need to find out who's spending the money because there's some mismanagement of funds there some place. If they're going to help anyone, they should help GM. They make some of the finest cars on the road..." said Mike. – Joel Anderson, Ed.
Story Source: Ojai and Ventura VIEW, Issue#10, Jan. 2010