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Opel: UAW Riding to the Rescue? - Autoline Daily 820

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This is Autoline Daily for February 7th. And as always, there are just so many new developments going on in the automotive industry. We start with reports out of Europe that say General Motors is going to appoint UAW President Bob King to the supervisory board of Opel As we’ve been reporting, GM is adamant about finally turning Opel around, after a decade of failed attempts. But GM will need to close plants and lay off thousands of workers, especially in Germany, and that is a political minefield Bob King played a crucial role in persuading UAW members to agree to deep concessions, both before and during GM’s bankruptcy He did the same at Chrysler and Ford, and he has played a very influential role in persuading unions in the city of Detroit to agree to concessions to avoid a bankruptcy No doubt GM is betting that King can play the same role at Opel. And this also gives Bob King a great opportunity to achieve his goal of getting unions in different countries to cooperate on a global basis. Republican candidates love to bash President Obama on the GM and Chrysler bailout, but none other than former Republican president George W. Bush, has come out defending the bailout In fact, he said that he’d do it again because he didn’t want to see unemployment hit 21 percent. Bush was speaking to the National Auto Dealers Association at its annual meeting. Nissan revealed the concept version of its next generation compact car for the European market called the INVITATION. The car will officially debut at next month’s Geneva Motor Show. The INVITATION features a sleek design, advanced safety features and what Nissan claims will be class-leading fuel economy and emissions. The production version is scheduled to go on sale next year in Europe and will be sold alongside the Micra and Juke. Several police departments in the country are complaining about delays in getting police versions of the Chevy Caprice According to the DuPont Registry, one police department in Florida said it took eight months for its vehicles to be delivered and then another five to equip it for duty Another department says it took 10 months to get two test vehicles. Police content isn’t added until after it’s imported from Australia, which GM says is leading to delays. And the company made last-minute changes that have affected the fabrication process. GM says it now has a pool of inventory at port and that departments should receive their vehicles sooner. Toyota has had a rough go of it the last few years, but the company is launching a product offensive this year to retake some of the ground it’s lost The Detroit Free Press reports 19 new vehicles are on the way in 2012, including a redesigned Avalon, which will equal or better the fuel economy of the Fiat 500! With a five-speed manual transmission, the diminutive Cinquecento averages 33 miles per gallon. The new Toyota Avalon will be revealed at the New York Auto Show in April. Fisker just got slapped by the U.S. Energy Department. Bloomberg reports the government agency blocked access to federal loans after the company failed to meet certain milestones Now Fisker has stopped working on its plant in Wilmington, Delaware where it plans to build the Nina, a less expensive electric car than the six-figure Karma It’s also laid off 26 workers. Fisker was awarded $529 million in loans back in April of 2010 to build advanced-technology vehicles It seems all federal loans like this one are on hold after the Solyndra debacle.

Video Details

Duration: 4 minutes and 8 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: John McElroy
Director: AutolineDetroit
Views: 69
Posted by: vecttra on Apr 9, 2012

GM faces an uphill struggle to revive Opel, and it looks like they'll be turning to the UAW's Bob King to help make it happen. Former U.S. President George W. Bush defends the GM and Chrysler bailouts. Nissan extends a cordial INVITATION for you to preview its next compact car.

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