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"Why Holden turned its back on bogans"

Discussion in 'News/Updates' started by ozNick, Jun 26, 2017.

  1. Calaber

    Calaber Nil Bastardo Carborundum

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    I think it's laughable that there are still those who blame the Abbott government for Holden's closure. Certainly, Joe Hockey made statements which clarified the government's stance on further financial assistance, and if the government had been prepared to fork over billions of dollars, over and above what had already been provided, GM might have continued for a few more years. However, as stated, the writing was on the wall for some years beforehand.

    Hockey had virtually nothing to do with Holden's demise and only ill-informed individuals could believe otherwise.
     
  2. c2105026

    c2105026 Active Member

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    Now I can understand the Govt subsidising important things that might not be commercially viable on their own eg museums, art galleries, community events, Anzac Day etc. I can also understand periodically subsidising industries that are critical to the nations food or energy security, but can by very unpredictable by nature (eg farming)

    But to give for-profit companies actual money (millions) handouts......crazy. It was happening as early as 2001. If your for-profit business model relies on govt handouts, I would argue you need a new business model.

    If the auto industry was left purely to Ayn Rand levels of lassaiz-faire economics, I dare say it would have finished by 1980 at the latest.

    Both sides of govt shoulder some blame, as do the makers themselves, for building cars that they liked, but the public didn't - however the bottom line is..... a country of 20 million having up to 3 unique model lines that aren't really imported elsewhere in large numbers.......not feasible.
     
  3. Reaper

    Reaper Tells it like it is.

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    Yep - Group A Commodores were out classed by design via rules which actively discriminated against them. We had a car which was putting out around 480hp kneecapped back to around 400hp and 1300kgs (from memory) vs pretty much any hp they liked in the sierra as turbos were free (yet camshafts on NA motors which were homologated to road specs) and only 1100kgs. Yep - hopelessly outclassed by design of the rule makers.

    Fast forward to the early 90's and the V8 2 make series came about because without it, channel 7 was out and cams would have been broke with no professional racing in Australia. As a road car, the V8 power has steadily grown as proportion of Commodores sold to the highest in their history over the last few years. Niche? Probably - but same same with near every other auto segment in Australia.

    Most of the problem here was the GM part of GMH - as usual - Detroit knows best and well we all know what happened. "Globalization" via the V car platform with no large car option was a mistake. In hindsight, the V car should have replaced the Torana and a modern version of the good old Kingswood to keep the large car segment alive. Camira was actually a very good driving car compared to it's peers of the day however it was terminally let down by horrendous quality and poor engineering decisions with the motor (soft piston rings for a start). As for the rest, the Piazza, Scurry, Barina and Drover were all imports so tarrifs were applicable to each of those models.

    In essence he was right.

    HSV's have always attracted a premium over their donor Commodore but to catagorise them as costing the same as 'high-end luxury' is wrong. Compared to anything vageuly the same performance from BMW, Mercedes, Audi or the like as a 4 door sedan is going to cost you multiples of the HSV/FPV/Tickford price.

    In the case of Holden, Peter Hanneneneneneneneenenenenburger set up an export office around about 2000. By 2005 it was going gang busters selling to the middle east and their little plant in SA was making a bomb but then GM noticed. They decided they could do it better, sent Peter H into early retirement and we got Denny Moony who sacked all the 'expensive' international trade guru's and thought interns over in Detroit could do the same job. Sales fell off a cliff. Shortly afterwards we got the GFC and even during all of this, Elizabeth as a plant was still profitable. Has been right up to and including 2015/2016FY (excluding abnormal redundancies and shutdown costs).

    Yet Ford, Chrysler, Mercedes Benz, BMW, Lexus still sell V8's quite successfully into Australia and around the world.

    On this point we agree - Holden in Australia is fuked. GM have made it abundantly clear they have zero interest in anything RHD and outside of American markets, I'm struggling to think of anywhere which is even moderately successful. In fairness the Colorado is very under-rated. I have looked at pretty much the entire range closely and I see nothing better in the Ranger to justify the higher price Ford ask and the Hilux is under done with regard to both content and load/towing capacity.

    Well they are better than GM but I'm not sure 'going fine' is how I'd describe them. Mark Fields (Ford CEO) was sacked only a month or so ago. I won't go thru all the reasons but lets just agree that such high profile sackings don't happen without reason.

    Decision was made, just not public yet. I'm sure Hockey and Abbot both knew.

    Decision was made years earlier, exact timing wasn't finalised however thus the spin on "no final decision has been made to close Holden" from GM. At best it may have pushed GM to make the announcement but zero influence on the actual outcome.

    It's an outside chance that GM will sell the Holden trademark or for that matter somebody buy it but not beyond the realms of possibility. Probably Holden's best chance TBH. I can't see govco allowing LHD new product to be on our roads any time soon.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
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  4. Reaper

    Reaper Tells it like it is.

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    The entire auto industry the world over operates on govco subsidies nearly since day 1. Australia is no different and has tipped money into Holden/Ford/Toyota/Nissan/Mitsushitti since day dot.

    Further to that, we continue to subsidise a lot of big business in Australia including the Alcoa Aluminium smelters, mining, farming and even the big banks (that one surprised me) via either tax breaks, lower energy costs or other concessions. In fairness it's a matter of return on investment with that return being in way of employment for locals. Dumbed down, but say Gvoco tipps in $1bil of subsides and company another $3b to set up shop here, govco knows they will employ however many thousand who will give the $1b investment back (and a lot more) via tax and other less tangible return.
     
  5. c2105026

    c2105026 Active Member

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    When you think about it - traditionally with the Commodore you would have a moderately new model every 2-3 years. First its a minor update (eg VT>VX) then a major redesign (VX>VY)

    But
    VE Launched Sept 2006
    Series 2 update 2010 - new motor, minor sheetmetal changes
    New model (with updated sheetmetal) 2013.

    Now The VEII would normally have been released as the VF in 2008-2009
    Something like the VF (Called VG?) could have been launched in 2011
    Entirely new model/platform in 2014.

    When a carmaker is in trouble, one of the things they do is stop updating models. Look at Valiant in the late 70s. VH platform should have been replaced by a platform to compete with Commodore and XD Falcon, but by about 1978 it was obvious this wasn't going to happen. The 3rd generation Magna was hardly touched over its run.

    From theabove analysis I would dare say that some time between the GFC (2008) and GM going full chapter 11 was when GM decided it would be pulling out of Australia at some point. Hence no new platform development was started the required 5 yrs or so from launch date.
     
  6. Reaper

    Reaper Tells it like it is.

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    No two ways about it - GM were in a world of trouble by mid 2000's and the GFC finally tipped the inevitable bankruptcy. The original VE 'zeta' program had AWD SUV (Adventra type) and coupe body styles, full NA GM release amongst it's platform product plan. Then GM cancelled near everything that wasn't past the point of no return (Sportswagon and ute only made it into production by weeks) with zero compensation for the hundreds of millions Holden spent on product design & development, further, GM pocketed approx $200mill of the zeta development budget to be tipped into their NA Silverado truck design.

    You are correct - the VE ran for over twice the length of time that Holden planned and budget cuts were very evident in the VE interior plastics and trim. Your timeline is a tad ahead of plan but the gist is right.

    Anybody ever wondered why Holden wasn't killed like Pontiac, SAAB and Hummer during the GFC and GM bankruptcy??? They were profitable and making truckloads of cash, despite GM's buttfucking. As a producer Holden were profitable right up to the end of last financial year (haven't seen the results for last FY yet). Of course redundancies, royalties paid to GM for use ofthe Zeta platform (that Holden did completely themselves mind you) and other accounting profit redistribution paint a somewhat different picture but that's more about media headlines than anything else
     
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  7. Nitro_X

    Nitro_X Numbskull

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    I think this is a symptom of 'globalisation'.
    Our world is evolving to a point where there is either one, or a small group of mega corporations that control and dominate an entire industry.

    TO give you an example of this outside of the automotive industry...
    A couple of years ago I bought $1000 worth of shares in Aussie online movie streaming company, Quickflix.
    They had good management, good product and service, competitive pricing and where riding the right tech at the right time.
    Then last year they went into voluntary administration and I lost my entire investment.

    Why? The main reason I believe was the American behemoth, Netflix
    Australians simply did not want to support our own business, everyone wanted Netflix, even before they arrived in Oz, consumers would find all sorts of ways to get around the geo-blocking so they could get direct access to the US Netflix...or they would use internet torrents to download the latest movies for free...or use the American Youtube (now owned by Google).

    We are being sold the idea that globalisation is good for everyone, well, I guess that depends or your personal perspective...one thing is for sure, it is good for the insiders and power-elites.
    The 'Money-Power' paradigm is winning....because humanity revolves around....'Money-Power'.
    If you don't play the game, you risk falling behind.

    .
     
  8. Nitro_X

    Nitro_X Numbskull

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    Maybe..
    According to this article by Martin Feil, (an economist specialising in Customs, logistics, ACCC actions, industry policy and international trade related matters, including transfer pricing) ex PM John Howard was instrumental in changing the landscape of the Australian economy.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-02-...ned-and-operated-by-the-usa-and-china/3816204

    Published 8 Feb 2012, snippet:
    There have been two major remarkable successes for the USA in its agenda to substantially dominate the Australian economy. Both events occurred during the prime ministership of John Howard. His friendship with president George Bush was obviously the stimulus for a major shift in Australia's economic relationship with the Unites States. John Howard was the fulcrum for two major government inspired economic policy initiatives.

    Firstly, the Howard government contributed a major amount of $25 million for the establishment of a US Study Centre at the University of Sydney. The NSW Labor government also contributed $2 million. On the other side of the Atlantic, Dow Chemicals contributed $2 million, Merck contributed $500,000, Alcoa $200,000 and Harvard $120,000. We certainly outdid the USA on the relative level of contributions. It is worth noting who is on the Board of Directors and who are advisers to the Centre.

    The advisors include: Mark Johnson, Chairman of Macquarie Infrastructure Group; Robert Joss, Dean of Grad School of Business at Stanford University; Kim Beazley; Bob Hawke; John Howard; Stephen Fitzgerald, Managing Director of Goldman Sachs; Anthony Pratt; Andrew Liveris, President and CEO and Chairman of Dow Chemicals; Roy Krzywosinski, Managing Director of Chevron Australia; Steven Roberts, CEO of Citigroup Australia; Michael Spence, Vice Chancellor of University of Sydney; and Thomas Schieffer who was the Ambassador to Australia and Japan.

    The second major achievement by the USA was the USAFTA in 2004. This Agreement has been discussed by me and others numerous times in the seven years of the Agreement's operation. Some people may argue that Australia obtained some benefit from the Agreement and that is true. (However)The benefits were consolation prizes compared to the major prizes won by US exporters of both elaborately transformed manufactures and intellectual property.

    In the past few years, America has also achieved a very substantial, discriminatory dispensation in the threshold for US investment in Australian businesses, property and land holdings. No investigation by the FIRB is required if the value of the investment is less than $1 billion. For the rest of the world, the threshold is $200 million.

    ------

    As a side note: John Howard's hard core Catholic beliefs, which is probably close to G.W. Bush's Evangelical Christian ideology is most likely the reason why he dragged our arses into the US fake war in the Middle East....thanks for that, Johnny.

    .
     
  9. greenacc

    greenacc Searching for the billion

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    Yes John Howard fucked the country and all the ******** polliess since then have continued the same way. All the while the hoodwinked mums n dads that voted him in still maintain he was a great man and dubbed him honest John.
     
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  10. immortality

    immortality Moderator Staff Member

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    Come on guys, no politician would screw a country......














    /sarcasm
     
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  11. Reaper

    Reaper Tells it like it is.

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    As a roughie $1k for most investors isn't a huge amount to loose and although painful I hope it wasn't too bad for you. As a very fast recon on it, I'd say it was an outside investoment at absolute best. They may have had a truckload of infrastructure behind it but without some major catalogues to lob up as content, they were always doomed to fail.

    It's downfall wasn't about globalism, more about content from what I saw.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2017
  12. Smithston

    Smithston New Member

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    I think Holden has turned its back on Bogans only to align itself with rednecks. What do you think the Bogans will be driving in 10 years? Colorado sportcat etc. Good one Holden. Bogans won't be able to drive v8 Commodores by that time because they will probably all be owned by middle aged middle class men with an appreciation for their country's history......
     
  13. Brettly-2008

    Brettly-2008 Active Member

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    Holden didn't turn its back on bogans, bogans turned their back on Holden. The dual cab ute/4wd has been the bogan vehicle of choice for many years now. Not saying all dual cab ute/4wd drivers are bogans, nor should anyone say all Commodore drivers are bogans.

    WTF is a bogan these days anyway?
     
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  14. VS 5.0

    VS 5.0 Well-Known Member

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    Anyone who doesn't fit the predetermined tree hugging PC mould ?
     
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  15. JoshlikesCalais

    JoshlikesCalais Active Member

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    There wouldn't be any problems if we weren't so far away from other countries, we had a higher population and our government wasn't so greedy
     
  16. Calaber

    Calaber Nil Bastardo Carborundum

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    Interesting comment. Distance? Well, wasn't a problem during our car export hey-day and its not a problem with our other exports today, so I'm not sure it was really a factor.

    Altered customer demands? Absolutely.

    Population? Yep, probably was a factor as it required large exports to reach the necessary economies of scale. The domestic market was not big enough.

    Greedy government? Nup. Taxes applied to everything with higher taxes kept in place to protect local luxury car production. Gradual reduction of tariff barriers doesn't support the idea of greedy government.
     
  17. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    I think Holden forget or are failing to acknowledge that in the most part car sales are down world wide not just Holden in the last few years. GM have closed down factories in the US. The car Co's that are probably doing ok are those who are selling $15-$20K brand new cars because you can buy something brand new on finance and then at end of the warranty period trade it in and get another loan for another cheap car. I think that GM is a bit naïve thinking that if they become this politically correct who delves in Gay Mardigras and Gay marriage that they will push up sales by appealing to a new customer base. Give it three or four years when all the hype has passed on gay marriage and rainbow flags they may realise they should have at least kept the Aust made Holden's as they were, even if they had to be made overseas to cut costs. With Fords going sales in RWD and V8s in the next few years may have increased once the economy picks up.
     
  18. figjam

    figjam Donating Member

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    I just got an email from Holden wishing me a Merry Christmas and “get yourself what you really want this Christmas.” ………….a Holden Equinox.
    The bogan in me says …… “No fkn way, I’ll stick with my Territory, thanks. It has RWD, 2 cylinders, 2 litres and 2 seats more than that.”
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2017
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  19. greenacc

    greenacc Searching for the billion

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    I got that email too. Deleted it along with the bitcoin spam I get.
     

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