- Dec 15, 2014
- Reaction score
- Members Ride
- 2007 VE Calais V L98, Lexus LX470
This found me on YouTube.
Interesting take on Holden in recent years.
Interesting take on Holden in recent years.
I’m John Cadogan from AutoExpert.com.au, the place where Aussie new car buyers save thousands off their next new cars. Hit me up on the website for that.
I propose we change the title for the person who runs a car company from CEO to CBO, more accurately to reflect their principal output, which (so far as I can determine) is bullshit.
(I’m using Professor Emeritus Harry G Frankfurt’s academic definition of bullshit - not accusing anyone specifically of lying. Look it up if you’re unsure.)
The chief bullshit officer of Holden is Mark Bernhard:
“...we went through a very emotional time with closure last year and as we have got through closure the shackles are now off.”
To test CBO 6 Bernhard’s shackle busting freedom hypothesis, we need examine events from about 2010.
Holden sold almost 133,000 vehicles that turbulent year, securing 12.8 per cent of the market. Every year since has been a farce.
2010 saw GM close Pontiac, effectively killing the Holden factory (the Commodore was exported to the USA as the Pontiac G8). To me, that’s the moment I saw Dr Kevorkian over the bed.
Observing Holden since then is like watching a crash test in slo-mo. Sales have plummeted almost 43,000 units between 2010 and 2017. Market share has dropped a staggering 41 per cent. It’s a spectacularly tragic implosion.
This formerly iconic brand has transformed itself into an anachronism.
But last year was Holden’s annus horribilus. The factory closed, after the most undignified lingering death ever. They were forced to fire 10 per cent of their dealers, which was incredible, as admissions of commercial defeat go. Unless of course you’re the CBO, talking it all up:
“It was purely a footprint review. It wasn’t anything to do with their competence or anything.”
Really? Why not seize this opportunity to bone your worst performing, shittest dealers? Not doing so would be negligent. Nobody culls randomly.
Also in 2017, General Motors, sold another of its loss-making disasters (in other words the entire GM Europe operation) to a global specialist at running loss-making automotive disasters, Peugeot-Citroen.
This was $2.6 billion worth of liberation for GM, but a kick in the guts for Holden, which right then lost any leverage on future products. Holden is adrift, and I see no evidence of a rudder.
Finally, after a prolonged investigation, in August 2017 the ACCC publicly placed Holden’s head in a vice, while simultaneously ushering its hindquarters into the prison shower.
Holden’s Court-enforceable Undertaking, personally signed on the 1st of August last year by the CBO himself, Mr Bernhard and ACCC Chairman Rod Sims, is a 22-page litany of institutionalised consumer violation stretching over six very long years.
But here’s how the CBO encapsulated this rather large issue to the (opinion) Dyson cordless corporate fellatio machine that is CarAdvice:
"Certainly the enthusiasm is there and the dealers are really buoyant on the product side of the business and efforts made around customers and looking after customers."
I’d suggest to Mr Bernhard: A) The dealers’ buoyancy is a direct consequence of Archimedes’ principle.If you make one in 10 dealers walk the plank, the plimsol line simply bobs up, closer to the meniscus.
B) The 22-page ACCC spit-roaster you signed five months back proves that Holden has been a Kim Jong Un of customer service on the Australian automotive landscape.
"This car, the next generation Commodore, it sets us up as this is what we are as a sales, marketing, engineering and design company going forward."
No, Mr Bernhard - that’s not what Holden is. It is a failed manufacturer, out of touch with the public, selling French leftovers and use-by date-expired kimchee in the discount bins.
I mention all of this not to rub Holden’s nose in the **** sandwich degustation of their own making, but to inform you, if you’re in the market for a Holden today. My advice is: Don’t.
2018 is shaping up to be an even less attractive annus than 2017 was for Holden. That’s what the entrails are telling me. Do yourself a favour: Watch from the sidelines. Buy something else. It’ll be quite interesting, and a lot less painful.