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Detroit: The Manufacturing meltdown

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The rise and fall of Detroit: A timeline. Sign Up for Our free email newsletters On Thursday, Detroit made history — and not in a good way. The heart of the U.S. auto industry and home to the Detroit Tigers, Eminem and the White Stripes, Motown, and (maybe) Jimmy Hoffa's body became the largest city ever to file for bankruptcy. In many ways, this financial crisis is 60 years in the making. As the Motor City faces an uncertain future, here's a look back at some key dates in the long, storied past of one of America's great cities: July 24, 1701Antoine de La Mothe Cadillac establishes a French settlement, Fort Ponchartrain du Détroit (the strait), along with 100 French soldiers and an equal number of Algonquins. 1760Britain wins the city from the French. 1796U.S. forces capture Detroit from the British.

Feb. 1, 1802Detroit becomes a chartered city, covering about 20 acres. 1827Detroit adopts its forward-looking city motto: Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus (We hope for better days; it shall rise from the ashes). 1899Ransom E. How the 1973 Oil Embargo Changed the Auto Industry. Last week was the 40th anniversary of the first Arab oil embargo which drastically changed the automotive industry. The oil embargo affected the car scene in multiple ways: Image Courtesy of FDPThe rise of foreign automakers: Before the 1973 oil embargo, only 13% of cars in the United States were imported. Shortly after, foreign automakers’ presence with their cars and off-road-inspired vehicles in the States dramatically rose and has been on the incline ever since.Tarnished reputations: Gas prices became more of a concern and as a result there was more of a demand to manufacture and sell smaller cars.

Some brands including Lincoln and Cadillac, who were known for their larger-style vehicles, took a huge hit to their reputation.CAFE standards: The federal government began to push that automakers meet corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards. 17 Facts About The Decline Of The U.S. Auto Industry That Are Almost Too Crazy To Believe. By Michael Snyder, on January 19th, 2012 Very few things illustrate how dramatically America has been deindustrialized than the stunning decline of the U.S. auto industry. Once upon a time, the United States literally taught the rest of the world how to make cars. We were the ones that invented the assembly line. We were the ones that showed the rest of the world what mass production could do for an economy.

For decades, we produced more cars than anyone else and we sold more cars than anyone else. Detroit was known as “the Motor City” and our manufacturing prowess dominated the planet. The following are 17 facts about the decline of the U.S. auto industry that are almost too crazy to believe…. #1 The average age of an automobile in the United States has gone up more than 50% since 1990 and is now sitting at an all-time record of 10.8 years.

. #2 Germany made 5.5 million cars in 2010. . #3 When you add up salary and benefits, the average auto worker in Germany makes $67.14 an hour. OPEC enacts oil embargo - Oct 17, 1973. Also on this day Lead Story On this day in 1931, gangster Al Capone is sentenced to 11 years in prison for tax evasion and fined $80,000, signaling the downfall of one of the most notorious criminals of the 1920s and 1930s. Alphonse Gabriel Capone was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1899 to Italian immigrants. He... American Revolution British general and playwright John Burgoyne surrenders 5,000 British and Hessian troops to American General Horatio Gates at Saratoga, New York, on this day in 1777. In the summer of 1777, General Burgoyne led an army of 8,000 men south through New York in an effort to join forces with British...

Automotive The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) implements what it calls “oil diplomacy” on this day in 1973: It prohibits any nation that had supported Israel in its “Yom Kippur War” with Egypt, Syria and Jordan from buying any of the oil it sells. Civil War Cold War Crime Disaster General Interest Hollywood Literary Music Old West Presidential Sports. A reputation-builder: The truck that won't die. When the Voluntary Restraint Agreement took effect in 1981, Toyota and other Japanese automakers had their passenger car imports restricted by the U.S. government. The 1984 Toyota Longbed Truck came during the early days of the agreement, and helped get Toyota and its dealers through the trade spat. In becoming the transportation necessity for gardeners, small contractors and college-bound students, the Toyota pickup established a beachhead with hundreds of thousands of new customers. Unfortunately for Toyota, the compact pickup's solidity was so good that buyers wanted to grow into a larger pickup, something that was not possible until the T100 arrived in 1992.

Our 1984 test truck was from the first model year of Toyota's fourth generation of pickups. The early-'80s color palette is evident, from the cream-colored paint to the plush mouse fur seats to the diaper-brown color of the carpeting. Toyota truck drivetrains were still a bit agricultural in those days. . — Mark Rechtin. G.M. to Close Hummer After Sale Collapses. The Hummer H2 Is the Most Embarrassing Car You Can Buy - Autotrader.

I recently had the opportunity to drive a Hummer H2 hundreds of miles around Florida for three days. This would've been the most embarrassing thing I've ever done, except that I was in Florida, so I kind of fit in. Before I get into the H2 and why I find it so embarrassing, let me discuss exactly how I came to be driving around Florida in a vehicle that easily passed for "cool" a decade ago and has since slipped into the realm of "slightly more endearing than Comcast's customer service department. " Here's what happened: I rented this H2 from Turo, which is this service that lets you rent cool, unusual, weird vehicles from normal people, instead of typical boring rental cars. Turo gives me a budget to rent cars every month, and I was going down to Florida to review some cars, so I decided I would use Turo to rent something interesting.

I passed up seemingly endless Mercedes, Porsche, BMW and Maserati options because I wanted to find something truly ridiculous. Then, things changed. Yes. Buying A Hummer Is A Lot Harder Than You Might Think. 2008 U.S. Gas Price Year in Review : TreeHugger. Photo Credit: Simon Davison Gas Prices in 2008 in the USA Gas prices have always been an up and down proposition. This year has been as especially rocky year, with prices reaching the highest in history, then plummeting to a 5-year low within only a matter of months. Graphs and charts just don't quite seem to do these extraordinary events justice, so lets look back through this years most pivotal moments, one day at a time... January 1, 2008—New York, Times Square celebrates the New Year by dropping the ball for the 100th time.

January 2, 2008—The day after New Years saw crude oil prices at a record $100 per barrel, with regular unleaded fuel costing an average of $3.05 per gallon. January 4, 2008—General Motors unveils that it has lost an automotive record of approximately $38 billion during the 2007 year. April 21, 2008—Gasoline prices jump to a record $3.50 a gallon in some parts of the U.S. May 21, 2008—Oil price skyrockets to $130 a barrel. Nov. 3, 2008—U.S. Did I miss anything? Do Hummer H2 Drivers Know How Stupid They Look? 7 Car Brands That American Automakers Mismanaged. ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images We Americans love our cars. For decades, we made the biggest and fastest cars in the world, and more of them than anywhere else, too. But for some reason, the rest of the world never really seemed to see things our way, building cars to better suit their needs instead.

That was all well and good for American automakers, until they started selling over here, that is. Suddenly, the Big Three couldn’t wait to try their hand at European cars. How hard could it be? Well, if history has shown us anything, very. These 7 automakers were brought to their knees under Detroit’s mismanagement, and show just how bad things can get when Americans tell Europeans how to build European cars. 1. Getty Images/Hulton Archive When Ford bought Jaguar in 1989, it set off a mild panic in the auto industry. 2. Source: National Electric Vehicles Sweden No other automaker was run into the ground by American ownership as badly as Saab. 3.

Source: Volvo 4. Source: Lamborghini 5. 6. 7. The Top 20 Dumbest Cars Of All Time. Slide-3870759 Stupid is as stupid does... There are plenty of lists of "the worst cars of all-time" floating around the Internet. But we want to zero in on what we think is a more egregious failure than simply turning out a bad car. What separates bad (as in "worst") from dumbest?

In our judgement, the "dumbest" cars to be foisted upon the pubic are those that leave the would-be customers saying "What were they thinking? " The poster-car for bad cars is the Ford Edsel. There is no Yugo, no AMC Pacer and no Ford Excursion on this list. The 1990 Chrysler Imperial is on our list. The editors of Autoblog put our heads together to come up with The Top 20 Dumbest Cars of All Time.

Research the Pontiac Aztek slide-3870760 20. There was room on the road for the PT Cruiser, a retro styled buggy that hearkened back to the day when only men drove and, when they did, they wore big hats. Research the Chrysler PT Cruiser slide-3870761 19. Research the Mercedes-Benz slide-3870762 18. Slide-3870763 17. 16. 13. 10 Cars That Damaged GM's Reputation (With Video) Cadillac tried to sell the Cimarron as a domestic alternative to cars like the BMW 3 Series—that was just pathetic. Not surprisingly, practically no one fell for it and the Cimarron never sold well. But to many people, this proved that GM at the time had little regard for the storied and significant Cadillac brand. 5. 1991-1995 Saturns Saturn was GM's attempt at a do-over.

Starting with a fresh plant in Spring Hill, Tenn., and a fresh labor agreement in that location with the UAW, the idea was that GM would create a fresh dealer network that would sell fresh new products in a refreshingly straightforward manner. Actually GM did a rather good job of setting up the plant, dealers and "no haggle" sales schemes - Saturn buyers really did seem to enjoy shopping at and buying from Saturn dealers.

But Saturn's cars were thoroughly mediocre. So GM, which got so much right when launching Saturn in 1990, blew the opportunity to build a new, loyal customer base by not getting the product right. Ten Vehicles That Bankrupted GM. Auto Worker Salaries - A: No. That figure is derived from what the auto companies pay in wages, health, retirement and other benefits, and includes the cost of providing benefits to retirees. How much does a UAW member make at a domestic auto plant? Various sites have cited the figure at an average of seventy-three dollars an hour (The Heritage Foundation). Keith Olbermann says that the figure is actually at twenty-eight before benefits, which only add ten dollars to the amount.

Other sources indicate that Toyota workers (who are not unionized) made more last year after profit sharing was calculated. So clear it up for us. A report from the conservative Heritage Foundation, opposing the auto industry bailout, said that members of the United Auto Workers union "earn $75 an hour in wages and benefits – almost triple the earnings of the average private sector worker.

" That figure has caught hold with some conservatives, and it seeps into media coverage from time to time as well. . – Viveca Novak and Joe Miller. 1985 Toyota MR2 - CarGurus. 1971 Chevrolet (USA) Monte Carlo 1gen Coupe full range specs. Oil Shock of 1973–74 | Federal Reserve History. On October 19, 1973, immediately following President Nixon’s request for Congress to make available $2.2 billion in emergency aid to Israel for the conflict known as the Yom Kippur War, the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC) instituted an oil embargo on the United States (Reich 1995).

The embargo ceased US oil imports from participating OAPEC nations, and began a series of production cuts that altered the world price of oil. These cuts nearly quadrupled the price of oil from $2.90 a barrel before the embargo to $11.65 a barrel in January 1974. In March 1974, amid disagreements within OAPEC on how long to continue the punishment, the embargo was officially lifted. The higher oil prices, on the other hand, remained (Merrill 2007).

As Arthur Burns, the chairman of the Federal Reserve at the time, explained in 1974, the “manipulation of oil prices and supplies by the oil-exporting countries came at a most inopportune time for the United States. Milestones: 1969–1976. During the 1973 Arab-Israeli War, Arab members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) imposed an embargo against the United States in retaliation for the U.S. decision to re-supply the Israeli military and to gain leverage in the post-war peace negotiations. Arab OPEC members also extended the embargo to other countries that supported Israel including the Netherlands, Portugal, and South Africa. The embargo both banned petroleum exports to the targeted nations and introduced cuts in oil production. Several years of negotiations between oil-producing nations and oil companies had already destabilized a decades-old pricing system, which exacerbated the embargo’s effects.

Cars wait in long lines during the gas shortage. (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, U.S. News & World Report Magazine Photograph Collection, Warren K. The 1973 Oil Embargo acutely strained a U.S. economy that had grown increasingly dependent on foreign oil. How Detroit Went Bottom-Up. In the spring of 2005, David Stockman at last reaped the reward of the monopolist. Stockman, who once served as Ronald Reagan's budget director, spent two decades on Wall Street preparing for this moment.

After stints at Salomon Brothers and the Blackstone Group, Stockman in 1999 set up his own private investment fund, Heartland Industrial Partners. He then used Heartland to shape a set of companies -- mainly in the automotive sector -- each dedicated to dominating a particular group of production activities. Of all Stockman's efforts, his most audacious centered on a firm named Collins & Aikman. Stockman used C&A as a vehicle to buy up small producers of interior components like dashboards and seats, and he swiftly captured a position supplying parts to more than 90 percent of all cars built in America. Although the acquisition spree left C&A saddled with debt, Stockman was so pleased with C&A's prospects that in 2003 he assumed control as chief executive officer.

Advertisement PinIt. Detroit’s Production Battle to Win World War II. Free Price Quote From a Local Dealer In 1940, the United States was depleted and alone. Decades of isolation and a global depression had created a nation unresponsive to the world beyond its borders. But the battles raging in Europe and Asia were growing steadily closer. Despite serious opposition to joining another foreign war, President Franklin Roosevelt understood the magnitude of the pending carnage. “The more you study it, the more you learn about it, the harder it is to believe it actually happened,” said A.J. The Cadillac of Tanks: A worker directs a crane operator to lower an M-24 tank. Seventy-five years ago, even the kingpins of Detroit—General Motors’ Bill Knudsen, Chrysler‘s K.T.

In 1939, the U.S. military was laughable. “We must be the great arsenal of democracy,” Roosevelt said during his December 29, 1940 fireside chat. The Axis powers laughed at the speech and scoffed at subsequent production goals. Detroit was the beating heart. The 40mm Bofors guns made by Chrysler. Auto Industry Bailout (GM, Chrysler, Ford) The rise and fall of Detroit: A timeline. From Motor City to Motor Metropolis: Becoming the Motor City. The Packard Plant Project - History.