At the end of the day today 2020 will be half over. Sometimes it’s OK to be Captain Obvious, or Capitaine Évident, because sometimes the obvious is a point worth making. Even with all of the bad things that have occurred and are occurring, this has easily and scarily been the fastest year ever, by far. Is that simply inevitable given I am older? I don’t know, but I hope, somehow, things slow down even just a little, especially after the virus situation calms down. I will offer my opinion that the coronavirus will never go away completely, that just like we (should) receive an annual flu shot, we will receive an annual (or biennial, every other year) coronavirus shot.
While I know that much of the substantial increase in views/visitors since early April is due to current circumstances keeping people at home, I want to thank the readers of Disaffected Musings for visiting. The monthly average for views for April-June of 2020 was about 40% higher than the previous high for one month. That’s quite a quantum leap in readership and I appreciate it. All that being said, I will continue to ask for the sale. Please feel free to tell your friends about the blog and to pass along the URL (https://disaffectedmusings.com), please feel free to click on any (or all) of the related posts at the bottom of each post, please feel free to “Like” any post and to submit thoughtful comments, and please feel free to click on any ad in which you have genuine interest.
This post is the most recent one in which I wrote about the potential market for an American-made super-luxury car. Also remembering that it is the automobile business I floated the idea of such a car sharing some components with other models, but not too many, so that initial development and tooling are not prohibitively expensive. From The Pontiac Solstice Book by Gary Witzenburg here is a partial list of components the Solstice shared with other cars to which GM had access:
Ecotec engine: Pontiac G6, Chevrolet HHR/Cobalt, Saturn Ion; yes, I realize that these models and even makes no longer exist, but that’s not relevant to the point
Manual transmission: Hummer H3, GMC Canyon, Chevrolet Colorado
Automatic transmission: Cadillac SRX/STS/CTS
Driveshaft, differential, rear axles: Cadillac CTS
Steering wheel: Pontiac Torrent
Steering column: Chevrolet Cobalt
Interior storage bin: Cadillac XLR
Seat frames: Opel Corsa
Obviously, I realize that a super-luxury car could not share too many components because that would diminish its status. Maybe the engine would have to be exclusive to this car, but could still be based on existing architecture. Here is a picture of a car, from machinespider.com, of one of the most beautiful cars I have ever seen, and a car that could be the basis for a super-luxury car, the Cadillac Elmiraj concept:
I stubbornly cling to the belief that such a car, even priced at $300,000-$500,000, could sell 5,000-7,000 units a year, especially if it had any success abroad. Let’s say my range is 1,000 units too high. At the midpoint of the suggested price range, annual gross revenue would be between $1.6 billion and $2.4 billion. At the bottom of both ranges, that figure is $1.2 billion. Even at half of the latter figure ($600 million), couldn’t GM recoup its development costs quickly and make a profit? Remember that Ferrari’s average profit per car is $80,000. At half that margin and at the bottom of my lower production range, GM would earn $160 million in profit annually from a super-luxury car.
OK, maybe I don’t really know what I am talking about. Maybe tooling and production costs would be higher, maybe sales would be lower and maybe the price would have to be lower. I still think the car would be profitable AND it would be a halo car that would give GM some positive publicity, if executed properly. Of course, no one at GM will ever read this and this car will almost certainly never be built. That doesn’t mean I can’t think outside the box. What box?!