Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39408 posts, RR: 76 Posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1526 times:
GM to Discontinue Camaro, Firebird
Wednesday September 26 1:08 PM ET By ED GARSTEN, AP Auto Writer-
DETROIT (AP) - Cruising the boulevard may never be the same. Two of America's favorite sports cars are nearing the end of the blacktop.
General Motors Corp. announced Tuesday the 2002 model year will be the last for the Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird.
The Ste. Therese, Quebec assembly plant where they are produced will close next September.
GM blamed the demise of the Camaro and Firebird on a 53 percent decline in the sports car market since 1990. Even the muscle cars were not strong enough to beat back the growth in popularity of sport utility vehicles and pickup trucks.
More than four million Camaros have been sold since it was introduced in 1967. Its peak year was 1978 when 260,201 were sold, but last year sales dwindled to just 42,131.
The Firebird's best year was 1978 when 175,607 were sold. In 2000, though, sales were just a tad over 31,000.
``The Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird have truly become an integral part of the American culture over the years,'' said John Middlebrook, GM vice president and general manager of vehicle brand marketing.
He said the automaker will be celebrating the cars with a 35th Anniversary Edition Camaro and a Collector Edition Firebird Trans AM.
The cars will not be directly replaced, but the new Chevrolet SSR, available next year, is expected to attract some Camaro and Firebird buyers. The vehicle is a cross between a roadster and the now extinct cult favorite El Camino.
Pontiac will offer the new Vibe GT, Bonneville SSEi and supercharged Grand Prix GTP.
The Ford Mustang still remains from muscle car glory days. Two similar models, Chevy Corvette and Dodge Viper, have only two seats and are much more expensive than the Camaro and Firebird.
The Ste. Therese plant opened in 1965 and has built the Chevrolet Celebrity and Monza, and Pontiac Grand Prix along with the Camaro and Firebird.
Most of its 1,065 hourly employees are eligible for retirement, as well as 380 employees currently on lay off, said Maureen Kempston Darkes, GM of Canada Limited president and general manager.
``This is an extremely painful and difficult decision,'' Darkes said. She said the company tried to find an alternative to continue manufacturing at Ste. Therese, but was unable to find one.
This is just foolish!
First the Impala SS & Fleetwood Brougham, now this?!?!
What in the f*** are they thinking?!?!
They're running the company like TWA!
This is why I like the Ford/Mercury/Lincoln auto division much better.
Advancedkid From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 762 posts, RR: 2 Reply 2, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 1479 times:
this is really sad.
The Camaro/Firebird's were/are in my opinion
superior to any Mustangs.
My best friend here, drives (I think is 1992)
a red hot Camaro similar to the ones in the photos,
with a manual transmission. It is much more comfy
than Porsche 928 that belonged to another friend,
however I think the Porsche has the better engine.
Ps. btw, what do you think of Toyota's MR-2.
I have seen what seems to me a most-recent model
and I don't know, I think have fallen in love with
Greeneyes53787 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 844 posts, RR: 0 Reply 5, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1462 times:
Friends, don't panic.
Corvettes and El Dorados will likely fail too. Utility is in. But people will tire of function alone. Convertibles left- for a while. But they came back. Rivieras and Toronados are gone too. But that type of car will probably rise again.
I believe Buick's new little SUV is a bit more poised than the others except for the BMW & MB which are quite good looking! This is a start toward sculptured cars again. Probably this will eventually lead to lower and sleeker designs. Eventually (I hope) the Camaro types and Riviera types will return. But in the mean polish up the old one that you have and wait for this change.
Flyguy1 From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 1711 posts, RR: 4 Reply 6, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1446 times:
I do not think either the Camaro, or Firebird will be back anytime soon. GM has said for years, that they may stop producing them. Both cars have not been selling at all the last few years, even when the economy was good.
Greeneyes53787 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 844 posts, RR: 0 Reply 7, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1440 times:
I suppose you are right, but personally I haven't liked the Camaro as much as the recent Mustang. The Chev isn't meaty enough for me (personally). I don't mean that it is slow. Both Ford and GM provide options to suit my taste for accelleration and speed. But the Camaro just seems to lack that special spark they once had. Granted they are more rakish than ever...
If Chev. would design a Camaro with 4-round tail lights and with high rear fenders (done right) I might consider buying one. What the car type is does not detract from my purchasing one. In fact, I own a '70 Camaro RS now. It is beautiful.
I'd like to see a 2-passenger sports car that isn't designed to go 200 mph- and that doesn't cost 65,000 bucks. I'd prefer a windshield that is curved from the sides to the center instead of the way they are today.
Also give me an instrument cluster that is less glass (as in modern) and more round gauges with that accurate Jaguar look. Offer a convertible too. But do not try to compete for power and handling with the fastest or quickest. That is for low egos that need boosting.
JetService From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 4798 posts, RR: 12 Reply 8, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1433 times:
This sucks bad!!!!! One of of favorites is the Camero Z28 (I believe they have 310 HP). I hope they com back. Does anyone know what this Chevrolet SSR is about? Have they released any pics or drawings? A roadster and the El Camino??!!!! WTF!?!?!
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39408 posts, RR: 76 Reply 9, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1433 times:
I think the Pontiac Trans Am is the car for you.
I don't know why the Camero gets all the attention. The Trans Am has all the goodies!
I test drove one about 6 months ago. My girlfriend is more into sports cars than me.
I tell you, that 2001 Trans Am with Ram Air is the closest I've ever came to feeling like a 707 at takeoff from a car!
It posts out 320hp, gets 28mpg and cost $31,000.
She ended up with the 2000 Ford Mustang. She had a deal she could't refuse. The Mustang is more comforable and has more amenities. The GM is pure power.
As for the Mustang, I'd rather go for the Lincoln Mark VIII. It shares a lot of the same principles of the Mustang Cobra. Yet it has all the luxury items and is way more comfortable.
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39408 posts, RR: 76 Reply 10, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1430 times:
Don't get your hopes up high! I am sure GM will bastardize this El Camino roadster into some little front-drive joke of a car. Remember when they brought back the Nova and LeMans in the late 1980s?
Can you imagine a Camaro nametag on a Cavalier body?!?!
Scary thought huh?
It could very well happen.
GM is complaining about sales! Well let me ask you, when was the last time any of you seen an advertisement on TV for a Camero or Firebird?
Probably at least 10 years!
Yet look at all the SUV (modern day grocery getters) commercials climbing rocks out in the wilderness!
This is an orchestrated demise by the bean-counters on top of the hierarchy at GM!
EIPremier From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1539 posts, RR: 1 Reply 11, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 1422 times:
It seems that GM management is absolutely clueless. They have stood watching from the sideline for the past ten years as Ford has aligned with numerous foreign automakers and as the Diamler/Chrysler merger took place. What has GM done in terms of "global integration?" Sure, they linked-up with SAAB, but then Ford took Volvo. And while GM has expanded in Europe, they haven't been very successful in bringing European (ie. Opel) designs to the US.
Furthermore, GM has not had much success with any of their so-called "innovative products." Saturn models were very competitive when they first came out, but since then, they have fallen behind the competition. GM tried to make Oldsmobile a showcase for their new sedan designs, and then they ended up scrapping the whole division. And, GM's more recent crossover efforts (eg... Chevy Avalanche, Buick Rendezvous, Pontiac Aztek) are so incredibly ugly that I cannot imagine anyone being willing to own one.
Meanwhile, GM has dragged old outdated designs along for far too long (eg. the Cavalier/Sunfire), and failed to properly market their "classic" designs such as the Camaro/Firebird.
So, as far as I'm concerned, GM deserves whatever financial woes come their way. And, given their present line-up, there is no chance of anyone in my family purchasing a GM product in the near future.
Kcle From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 686 posts, RR: 0 Reply 12, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days ago) and read 1411 times:
Ah, that's old news to me. I've known that since my dad bought his 99 Mustang Cobra in March. The main reason; people like the Mustang better, plus the Mustang is cheaper, unless you want a $60,000 Cobra R, then it's not cheaper.
Wn700driver From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 13, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days ago) and read 1409 times:
Thats basically the rub of it. I will always love GM (even now I think they are still lightyears ahead of Ford in terms of, well, everything, but especially quality & innovation), but I will always feel that there executive management is for shit. A good way to put it would be:
GM is like having a retarded little sister. You love her to death, but she's still retarded.
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39408 posts, RR: 76 Reply 14, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 4 days ago) and read 1403 times:
You are exactly correct. Many people don't even know that the Firebird Trans Am was still in production over the past 15 years. I pay close attention to the automotive industry and I can't recall seeing a Firebird/Trans Am ad since the TV show Knight Rider (1982-86)
I spoke to a designer for GM back in 1998, and he told me that GM is pushing the SUV more because it's cheaper to produce and don't need to be re-designed as much. Also the fuel and regulations are less stringent.
Yet they know that rear-wheel drive sedans & coupes is the best and durable way to make cars. Problem is that if everyone bought reliable cars, they would loose money because people wouldn't replace them as often.
This is a big reason why GMAC has pushed 'lease packages' more aggressively.
At least we can always rely on Ford to continue to produce the best cars in the world.
Greeneyes53787 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 844 posts, RR: 0 Reply 15, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 1398 times:
Probably. I just finished two trips to California. I drove out in my Park Avenue & in my '85 Ford F-250 towing a box trailer. On the way back to KY the trailer had a car in it. The truck sucks gas but is amazingly strong. For big jobs Ford comes through.
KaiTakFan From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 1587 posts, RR: 7 Reply 17, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 1386 times:
Mustangs all the way! much better looking than any GM sports car... cant argue that! more comfortable, and if you really want your mustang to be faster go get a GT like I did and build it up to be faster yourself! nothing looks better than a dark pacific green 96 GT with 17 inch chrome rims! PHAT AS PHUK eh? but I must say I love the Ram Air. really sweet looking car! that will be a shame when that car comes to an end!
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39408 posts, RR: 76 Reply 18, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1385 times:
It is a tough call between the Mustang and the Pantiac Firebird Trans Am.
If you want pure speed off the line, I have to say the GM (Ram Air models only) wins. However, the Mustang is way more comfortable and has many more amenities than the GM.
I like the CD/Cassette combo AM/FM system, illuminated vanity mirrors, up-right seating, and optional woodgrain instrument panel availible on the Mustang.
I am partial to Ford only because I like luxury cars myself. GM hasen't made one since the 1996 Fleetwood Brougham Cadillac. Everything else they made since in that market is a joke.
The only GM car left will be the Corvette Z06.
Who has $55K plus for a two seater?
Not very many!
A used Mark VIII (1993-98) is a Mustang Cobra with a quieter exhaust and more luxurious.
Check those out.
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39408 posts, RR: 76 Reply 20, posted (12 years 2 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 1359 times:
I had always said that GM has a better 'sports car' than Ford.
..And I am a Ford fan saying this too!
Even there 'B' body cars (Fleetwood Brougham, Caprice Classic, Impala SS, Roadmaster and Custom Cruser) was better than the Ford (Town Car, Grand Marquis and Crown Victoria)
The GMs were bigger, faster and cheaper in price.
The problem is that GM killed the production and didn't put a penny into advertising these cars! They were truely an engineering milestone for full-size American sedans.
Pratt&Whitn From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 21, posted (12 years 2 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 1350 times:
Hey, Thanks. Ype GM does make a better sportscar than Ford. I'm glad you like the Fleetwood & the Impala SS. They are nice cars. I've always been a Ford Crown Vic fan though. I guess its because its the man Cop car around the U.S.
Hopefully I can get a good deal on a 2002 Camaro SS M6. Those things look sweet as hell!!!!!
-Pratt&Whitney (You've probably already guessed who I am
NKP S2 From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 1714 posts, RR: 5 Reply 22, posted (12 years 2 months 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 1335 times:
Bad news for sure. Just another sign that GM has lost it's way. I guess they forgot that "there's an ass for every seat" philosophy of vehicle product line. The worship of short term, bottom line profits are painting them into a corner of putting all their eggs in the SUV basket: If product "A" is 49% of your profit and product "B" is 51%...then today's "brand managers" running GM ( who could be just as happy hawking laundry detergent ) would conclude that product "A" should be discontinued, with all resources going into product "B". -- One bright note though: Bob Lutz's recent arrival at GM. An honest-to-god "car guy". He really woke up Chrysler with bold, innovatve designs that build showroom traffic...cars bean counters love to hate.