Saab SUV

November 11th, 2006 by Potato

I’ve been watching a lot more TV now that it’s fall again, and along with that comes watching more commercials. Recently, I saw one announcing that Saab is introducing an SUV, and I was overcome with complete disbelief.

Disbelief because they’re doing this now, when the SUV market is finally starting to turn back down and honest-to-goodness cars are coming on strong. When climate change and foreign oil dependency are on the minds of many Americans.

Disbelief because I can’t believe how stupid GM is. GM has become essentially a truck company in the last decade or so, since that seems to be the only division capable of turning a profit there. Despite being the largest automaker in the world with the resources to do some good research into efficiency (and actually managing to produce and sell an electric car at one point), they left it to Honda and Toyota to actually produce working, production hybrids (and from the look of their concept cars, fuel cell vehicles as well). With the exception of a few models, most GM cars are not seen in a very good light, and only massive sales promotions have manged to move any. So one would think that when they bought Saab, it was to produce cars, specifically cars designed in a different way than the GM standard (cars designed by people who make jets, or so I’ve heard). Yet when the brand faces sagging sales, rather than trying to keep it as a low-volume identity, or making different (smaller?) cars, GM goes to it’s old stand-by formula: more towing capacity = more sales. It’s so short-sighted and unimaginative that it makes me mad; worse yet is that it might actually work for them. Of course, it also puts GM into even more of an eggs-in-one-basket situation: if SUV backlash gets much worse and sales slump even more (and they could be primed to, as I’ve heard reports that the resale value of SUVs is taking a nose-dive: the people who want to drive SUVs tend not to be the same people who want to save money on used cars) then GM could be in for a whole world of hurt.

Also The Departed and The Return are playing on adjacent screens at the movie theatres here. It really makes them seem like they go together.

Finally, this is an absolute must-see. I first saw it on a clip of the Ellen show that Wayfare taped for me, and it’s so impressive that the dog not only rides the skateboard, but steers it, and stops before crashing into the curb and turns around. On the clip from TV, we also see the dog’s owner introducing the bit while holding the skateboard, and the dog just flips out with excitement waiting for him to put it down so it can ride.

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