No Robots in Disguise for GM
“Truck owners want trucks,” saysglobal design guru Ed Welburn here. Not, he adds, vehicles that “do a lot of gymnastics and transformations.”
Welburn’s remarks are aimed in the general direction of competitors such asand . The former has shown a midsize-truck concept, the A-Bat, that features a fold-down midgate, while Chrysler’s Rampage boasts a dry storage area under the cargo bed that can accommodate a standard-size sheet of plywood.
Ironically, GM has gotten a lot of mileage from its association with the “Transformers” movie franchise. Sci-fi characters of the same name morph from vehicles such as the Chevrolet Camaro into formidable robot warriors.
Criticism From Pillar to Post
Fair or not (or perhaps just jealous), a wide range of industry executives express disappointment with the design direction demonstrated by’s Mercedes-Benz cars, telling Ward’s the luxury-vehicle maker has lost its way.
No criticism is too harsh. In a swipe at the brand’s heritage, which is steeped in elegance and sportiness, one high-ranking suit from Germany declares the new E-Class sedan is “no longer German.”
But a design-community insider gives kudos to Mercedes’ radical decision to roll out the E-Coupe, unencumbered by a B-pillar. With the vast array of crashworthiness regulations affecting design, “It takes guts to do a pillar-less car,” he tells Ward’s.
Some Day My Prince Will Come
’s core brand adopts a playful theme at its auto show stand here.
With its pastel-shaded backdrops, the decor resembles a children’s nursery, with cars such as the pint-sized500 strewn about like so many toys. Meanwhile, Disney music wafts in the background, including “Some Day My Prince Will Come.”
Journalists wonder if Fiat is sending a subliminal message about its elusive CEO Sergio Marchionne.
In bygone days, lapel pins were, for high-school sweethearts, an outward sign of devotion.
So it’s fitting that Siegfried Wolf declares his commitment to the marriage ofand ’ Adam Opel GmbH.
With the ink barely dry on GM’s acceptance of a-led consortium’s bid to buy a partial stake in Opel, Wolf, the mega-supplier’s co-CEO, shows up at the auto maker’s press conference sporting Opel’s lightning-bolt logo on his jacket.
– compiled by Eric Mayne