One Stop Car Shopping...Maybe

In an intriguing strategy move, Saturn dealerships will now have either Toyota Camrys or Honda Accords on hand to test along side the Saturn Aura and Chevy Malibu. The idea behind this is that many American consumers don't even consider GM cars and go straight to either Toyota or Honda. They wish to give the consumers the options right there without going to competing dealerships.

While this is all well and good, a few difficulties remain. First, I don't particularly think that a person considering either a Toyota or Honda will be that swayed at the chance to get their potential car bad-mouthed by a car dealer. I'm pretty sure that the most common experience the consumer will have at the GM dealerships will be a strong push toward the Aura or Malibu while knocking the Camry and Accord down a notch in the process. The only advantage I see for this program is that if a person is committed to a GM car, then the competitors' cars can be used as a bargaining chip to get a better deal. This is the consumer's advantage not GM's however.

Overall, I think in order for American cars to regain the respect that the Japanese cars now have is to put out a quality and innovative product. A car means a lot to many people, so they need to provide cars with great features, good gas mileage and high quality, all while making it desirable at a low price. Once GM and the other American manufacturers figure this out, they will stop pushing customers away to other brands.

[Photo: MissJasmine]

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