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Chevy Cruze Sales Bomb - Lordstown Plant To Lose Shift & Jobs

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Zane Merva

Executive Editor, GM-Trucks.com

4/13/18

 

The Chevrolet Cruze is not selling well. Sales of the model are down 28% this year, leading the industry average drop of 13.2%. As a result, the Lordstown, Ohio factory that produces the Cruze is cutting a shift... and losing jobs. 

 

Earlier today plant leaders let factory workers know about the changes and the several hundred jobs that would be lost.  The Cruze once sold 273,000 copies a year but has recently slowed along with other US sedan sales. In 2017 Chevrolet only moved 184,000 of the small sedans. 

 

Meanwhile, crossovers and suv sales are holding steady or growing. A recent IHS report pegs that 66.9% of crossover and suv owners buy another crossover or suv. Are sedans about to die once and for all? Or will the slump rebound? Only time will tell. 

 

What do you think?

 

Source: CNBC

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If gas creeps back up hard ever again, this may flip flop quick.  Maybe Lordstown should get Trax or some other small SUV production to supplement this loss and keep employees?  That move could pull Trax from Mexico or some from Korean production (seeing GM Korea is on the fritz, this might be something worth doing?).  But, if small, high MPG x-overs keep showing up, that are really good products, then small cars will become a niche market. 

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I just had to buy an ecno box for a less fortunate family member that needed a new car. Lessons I learned during the process: Outside of the Mustang and Camaro, Ford and GM doest make "cool cars" according to today's young drivers. Kids today don't want domestic cars. When I went a place I never go such as an import dealership, I was blown away at the features offered for the money on the imports. I quickly learned why GM and Ford don't build "cool cars" anymore to the younger generations. At the end of the day I wrote a much smaller check for a new Hyundai that had  a longer warranty, features that were leaps beyond what GM offered in the electronic gadgets on the Impalas and Cruzes. I even offered to buy the kid a new Sierra and she picked the Hyundai with the sunroof, lightning fast Apple carplay and XM radio over the Sierra. I swear the ecnobox has a better radio and entertainment system than my K2 Sierras. I guess in a kids mind, that is all that matters.

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Maybe if someone made a full size car that I don't consider a midsize I'd consider buying a car one day, they're all so tiny unless you go to the higher end luxury cars.  Why can't we have something the size of a second gen impala again?  Heck even the crown vics seem to make today's "full size" seem mid size.  I do agree with the above though, domestics are pretty bland unless you get up in the higher trim levels.  Can't really compete with some of the so called import warranties though.

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Maybe if someone made a full size car that I don't consider a midsize I'd consider buying a car one day, they're all so tiny unless you go to the higher end luxury cars.  Why can't we have something the size of a second gen impala again?  Heck even the crown vics seem to make today's "full size" seem mid size.  I do agree with the above though, domestics are pretty bland unless you get up in the higher trim levels.  Can't really compete with some of the so called import warranties though.

When we decided to go full-size, the wife really, we ended up with a 2011 Genesis. We still have and it still has bumper to bumper warranty. They have now priced themselves out of my consideration. I recently bought a Camry, it’s not as large as the Genesis it doesn’t feel too small. In comparison, It’s hard to find a bad car. I test drove all the mid sized before I bought the Camry, and at the time was the cheapest. Like you I found the larger size cars tend to be a few thousand more.


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Young people seem to have no interest in the Cruze which does not surprise me . Asian mfg's have the attention of the youth. Hell short of a Camaro most people rather not even talk about Chevrolet cars . Not sure but Ford and Chrysler may be in the same boat too.

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My family owns 3 different vehicles, for 3 different purposes. Truck, for trucks stuff & family hauling when weather requires it. GMC Terrain for family hauling most of the time and the wife to get to work. Grand am for when I'm driving alone and racking up miles.

 

I am not enticed by electronics and gadgets, I plan to keep a vehicle longer than the radio or nav system is considered cool or cutting edge. I will upgrade my phone several times and use its features, while my vehicles remain a mode of transportation only.

 

I plan to purchase another mid-size sedan soon, as my current one is approaching the 200k mark. I will not be looking at new, only gently used. The only electronic features that matter to me are those that have existed for more than a decade: power windows, locks remote start. I guess a back-up camera would be nice, not required. I won't pay a nickle more for anything else that my smartphone can already do by itself.

 

I guess I'm in the minority.

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On ‎4‎/‎13‎/‎2018 at 4:24 PM, O_J_Simpson said:

I just had to buy an ecno box for a less fortunate family member that needed a new car. Lessons I learned during the process: Outside of the Mustang and Camaro, Ford and GM doest make "cool cars" according to today's young drivers. Kids today don't want domestic cars. When I went a place I never go such as an import dealership, I was blown away at the features offered for the money on the imports. I quickly learned why GM and Ford don't build "cool cars" anymore to the younger generations. At the end of the day I wrote a much smaller check for a new Hyundai that had  a longer warranty, features that were leaps beyond what GM offered in the electronic gadgets on the Impalas and Cruzes. I even offered to buy the kid a new Sierra and she picked the Hyundai with the sunroof, lightning fast Apple carplay and XM radio over the Sierra. I swear the ecnobox has a better radio and entertainment system than my K2 Sierras. I guess in a kids mind, that is all that matters.

I understand this quite a bit.  It still ticks me off.  1. Teaching kids that foreign company products are better.  2. gadgets are worth more than keeping your eyes and mind on the road.  3. cheaper is usually better.  Some of this is very wrong.  All of it wrong most of the time.  Still, setting a precedence that is not good for our country, our kids and their lives going forward.

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I don't see the value in the smaller cars myself, the minor additional amount that a Malibu costs over a Cruze and the very similar fuel economy makes the small cars of no interest to me..... I think there was a $10 per month payment difference when we leased our LT Malibu for $247 sign and drive for 3 years the Cruze was $237 for the same term, It'd have to be at least $75 a month less for me to even being to consider it....

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GM took away the 100,000 mile power train warranty and they are wondering why their sales are tanking?  I would have updated both of our vehicles last year but didn't because I had more warranty left in my current vehicles than I would have had in the new ones.

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17 minutes ago, user1484 said:

GM took away the 100,000 mile power train warranty and they are wondering why their sales are tanking?  I would have updated both of our vehicles last year but didn't because I had more warranty left in my current vehicles than I would have had in the new ones.

The power train warranty isn't really worth the paper it's written on... basically it was said to me that unless your transmission literally falls apart or your engine come undone,  nothing is covered.  I had my truck stuck in 4wd high twice after the 3 year bumper to bumper ran out but still inside the 5 years/100K.... first time it was the module, second time (less than 6 months later) it was said that the wiring harness somehow "chaffed through" and was shorting out... this was on on my '14 Sierra AT.... cost me almost $1000 all total.....

 

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I can see why sales for these cars are down... I recently drove a 2018 Chevrolet Cruze for two days while my '18 Silverado was getting its Katzkin leather installed....  most uncomfortable car I have ever driven and this wasn't the bottom trimmed model of this piece of crap either.  Interior was bland and uncomfortable,  electronics was bland,  it was seriously under powered even for a "small car", steering was jerky and the ride was harsh...  what a huge piece of crap.

My wife was in the market for a small crossover last fall.. we looked at the GMC Terrain, the Chev Traverse, and the Ford Edge in the domestic models.... then we looked at the Kia Sportage, Mazda CX5, and the Hyundai Tucson in the import models.  We went with the Sportage and we are glad we did.... feature rich, comfortable interior, nicely powered, and warranty is much better.

I will always buy domestic in trucks,  but my days of driving domestic cars/cross overs are long gone.

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I can see why sales for these cars are down... I recently drove a 2018 Chevrolet Cruze for two days while my '18 Silverado was getting its Katzkin leather installed....  most uncomfortable car I have ever driven and this wasn't the bottom trimmed model of this piece of crap either.  Interior was bland and uncomfortable,  electronics was bland,  it was seriously under powered even for a "small car", steering was jerky and the ride was harsh...  what a huge piece of crap.

 

My wife was in the market for a small crossover last fall.. we looked at the GMC Terrain, the Chev Traverse, and the Ford Edge in the domestic models.... then we looked at the Kia Sportage, Mazda CX5, and the Hyundai Tucson in the import models.  We went with the Sportage and we are glad we did.... feature rich, comfortable interior, nicely powered, and warranty is much better.

 

I will always buy domestic in trucks,  but my days of driving domestic cars/cross overs are long gone.

I disagree on your last statement. I owned a string of Honda’s and Mazda’s before getting my wife’s 2016 Malibu LT and we are much happier with the Malibu in every way. The 2017 and older equinoxes and terrains are very dated though IMO and I’ve not been a fan of anything FERD has chunked out in years. Up until the latest gen GM vehicles I wasn’t impressed with their vehicles either: ie 2015 and older Malibu’s 2016 and older Acadias and 2017 and older equinoxes / terrains.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Imcrazy said:

I disagree on your last statement. I owned a string of Honda’s and Mazda’s before getting my wife’s 2016 Malibu LT and we are much happier with the Malibu in every way. The 2017 and older equinoxes and terrains are very dated though IMO and I’ve not been a fan of anything FERD has chunked out in years. Up until the latest gen GM vehicles I wasn’t impressed with their vehicles either: ie 2015 and older Malibu’s 2016 and older Acadias and 2017 and older equinoxes / terrains

 

 

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Yeah....we weren't in the market for a sedan so I wouldn't be able to comment on those. But the Terrain and Traverse did not bring much to the table at the same price point as the CX5 and Sportage.  GM has come a long ways but they are still behind the curve when it comes to putting in "standard options" that most drivers have enjoyed as "standard" in imports for a long time. I remember when I owned my 2010 Sierra and a friend of mine had bought a new , entry level 2010 Kia Rondo.  Her car came standard with Bluetooth phone pairing yet my truck which was almost $30k more did not, I thought that was completely nuts

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