For years, General Motors made its mark selling domesticated tanks that required a surgeon's exacting touch and focus to keep the axles between the road hash marks. OK, so the Hummer wasn't that bad, but it close. Now, however, GM has announced it's unveiling its cheapest car ever. The inspiration, or competition, comes from India, where the Tata Nano -- an adorable slab of car with a base price of under $3000 -- is putting auto makers on the notice that the race to the bottom in car prices is on.
GM says the car will likely and the company would like to begin production in Asia, since the market for extremely tiny cars in the United States is currently about the size of the Tata Nano. That's OK though, say GM officials, since two-thirds of car sales come from outside the United States anyway.
But could this car sell in the States? Not right now, I'd say. As our guest writer "Anal_yst" pointed out in this
excellent post, the market share of small cars has done nothing but
plummet in the last 30 years. Here's the graph he compiled:
On the other hand, I should point out that of the 10 most popular cars bought through the Cash for Clunkers program, only one was an SUV. Leading the C4C purchase pack was the diminutive Ford Focus, followed by a raft of small, fuel-efficient cars produced in Asia. So it's possible that we're bending that curve you see above. Either way, it's nice to see GM trying to compete with emerging market auto makers, because it tells me that somebody is serious about making GM an auto company that's thinking globally and long term.
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