Dieselgate was the Beginning: German Car Companies Have Run A Secret Cartel Since The 90s: Report

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by AustinIllini, Jul 23, 2017.

  1. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #1
    https://jalopnik.com/german-car-companies-have-run-a-secret-cartel-since-the-1797143527

     
  2. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #2
  3. AustinIllini, Jul 23, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2017

    AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #3
    25 years isn't exactly "short term". And the car industry is not a "Free Market". Japan subsidizes its major manufacturers to keep them viable, Korean companies are all intermingled to minimize competition, and American cars are bailed out by the government (GM, Chrysler) or banks (Ford) OR they rely on government subsidies for traction.

    There is nothing "Free Market" about the auto industry. Look for Tesla to figure that out when the government subsidies expire at the end of this calendar year.

    And the big three German manufacturers make significantly better cars than anything Tesla offers. An electric 3 series or an electric A4 would run circles around a Model 3.
     
  4. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #4
    Let me connect it to the Germans. During this collusion timeframe, they refused to invest in new technologies like electric drivetrains and autonomous driving. They are trying to catch up now but are 4-5 years behind Tesla.

    How long did it take Nokia and Blackberry to catch up to Apple? It took Samsung and Google to make billions in investment to catch up while Apple had the market all to themselves.

    Short term bean counting vs long term innovation. That's why I love Silicon Valley.
     
  5. AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #5
    All sounds good right now, but Chevy, Toyota, and the rest are not going to bend down to Tesla. They're safely betting on automation and gas engines with a look into electric technology, because the reality is we are NOT in an electric car society, electric cars are not reliable, and Tesla's autopilot is not as sophisticated as you think.
     
  6. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #6
    Do you own one? I do and it's better than anything else on the market. I've don't a lot of research into it and Tesla has a huge lead with billions of miles of experience. Only Waymo is close. Mercedes, BMW, Toyota, GM won't have anything close to Tesla for a few years.

    As for reliability, I've owned BMW and Mercedes for years and my Tesla is the most reliable car I've owned.

    https://medium.com/twentybn/germany-asleep-at-the-wheel-d800445d6da2

    http://www.thedrive.com/tech/4591/t...7-mercedes-benz-e-class-vs-2017-tesla-model-s

    And Toyota just came off of wasting billions on hydrogen fuel cell technology.
     
  7. AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #7
    I don't feel the need to blow $80,000 on a car that is essentially a $50,000 Lexus that runs on coal. You're assuming a bunch, but Tesla is still WAY above the price it needs to be at to dominate the market. Even at $35,000, you're talking loaded Honda Accord, loaded Toyota Avalon, and base BMW 320i price. That's not what the public wants, especially with the trash reliability and cost to own of a Tesla. A typical Honda Accord buyer doesn't want an unreliable Tesla which can only go to one select dealership which is overrun with all the other broken Teslas. The Model 3 will be a nice add, but a similarly priced A4 is faster, better equipped, has an instrument cluster, and is as well furnished as a Model 3. Oh, and by the way, that $35,000 number is a joke, too. To get all the features people want, the 3 is a $40,000 car at best.

    We get it, you're proud of your Tesla. Congrats on overspending on a car that runs on whatever fuel your home or work's electricity comes from.

    And use real sources. Analysts are very bullish on Tesla and rightfully so, but they understand the limits. If Tesla were to truly take over the electric car market unchecked, they would face bankruptcy litigation, so you better hope the other automakers catch up.
     
  8. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #8
    Forget about me as an owner but at least be accurate in your descriptions of the car.

    Coal has been dropping in the US for years and being replaced by natural gas. Last number is saw was 30%. In the western states, it is already close to zero. I use solar so I am already 100% zero carbon and self sustaining. The PowerWall will allow me to go completely off grid.

    The Model S starts out at $75K and is already dominating the full size luxury market and beating Mercedes, BMW, and Porsche combined. I expect the Model 3 to do the same to BMW 3/4, Mercedes C, and Audi A. There were almost 400k reservations the first week. That is more than the other manufacturers sell in a year.

    You really can't compare a Tesla to a Honda Accord. One is a sporty RWD autonomous very with the latest tech. The other is a economy FWD commuter car. The typical Model 3 buyer is coming from BMW and Mercedes, not Honda or Toyota. The BMW 320i starts out at $35K for example.
     
  9. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #9
    Let's also talk about being overpriced.

    I paid what I would have paid for a fully loaded 5 or 7 Series BMW. In exchange, I save 75% on gas (about $2500 a year for my driving) and thousands more a year on maintenance. I've had mine for 5 years so I know from experience.

    Who's overpriced now?
     
  10. AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #10
    You are completely missing the point. No one wins the car market with a $75,000 car. No one wins the car market with a $35,000 car. We already know the model 3 isn't better than a BMW, Merc, or Audi at anything. It doesn't have CarPlay, it doesn't have an instrument cluster, and its self driving car is in beta and no one should be using it.

    Look at all those non-features you get. Meanwhile, in a German car you get the best looking tech in the best drivers cars in the world.

    And to win in this industry, the Model 3 is going to have to be an Accord or be cross shopped with it.

    Thanks for trolling this thread, by the way.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 23, 2017 ---
    Your Tesla by about a mile. Your interior is a step down, your car weighs 700 extra pounds so your tires are trash, and you probably have the ridiculous 21 inch tires, so if you drive with any sort of spirit, you're replacing all of them.
     
  11. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #11
    My only point is the that Germans are in trouble and made some poor decisions. And Tesla is exploiting it. At least Volvo is realizing it.
     
  12. AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #12
    Your point is taken and discarded for lack of serious evidence. You can spray off about how great your car is in the Car Thread

    What's actually crazy about this situation is it is yet ANOTHER reason the free market doesn't exist. The fact is, companies still cannot be trusted.
     
  13. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #13
    Well.. sorta.

    I certainly believe the reports that German automakers co-operated in the sourcing of components in such a way that may be illegal under German; European Union; and United States competition law. And if that is the case then those companies should be fined and otherwise punished in an appropriate manner.

    But does that mean I don't trust them?

    That's an interesting rhetorical question. I certainly wouldn't "trust" them to watch my kids or invest my pension accounts. But that's not the business they are in. They are in the business of making high-quality; high-performance automobiles.

    And for that, even in light of "Dieselgate" and this latest scandal: Yeah. I trust BMW, Porsche, Audi; and Mercedes to make pretty good cars. How well they comply with business regulations; labor practices; etc. - that is, for the most part, between the companies and various Government regulators. No?
     
  14. AustinIllini thread starter macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #14
    That's a good point. I think for me, personally, I have a lot more of a problem with what happened with Takata or the GM ignition switch scandal.
     
  15. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #15
    Well, YOU bring up a very good point. Because in that light, we do need to "trust" automakers to ensure that the vehicles they sell us are safe. And that's an instance where we would only find out our trust had been misplaced when it was tragically too late.

    I think in that instance we have some protections. I think that product-liability law, at least here in the US, gives consumers a fair degree of power to ensure that vehicles are going to be safe. It is not, as the examples you cited, going to be 100% effective. And I think there is an argument that making responsible executives personally criminally liable for deliberate actions that compromised safety might move us a little closer to that 100% number.

    Big picture: The free market giveth; and the free market taketh away. The secret is finding the right balance between free-market entrepreneurship and innovation; and Government regulation.

    And that's a topic that's going to be very hard to find consensus on.
     
  16. A.Goldberg macrumors 68000

    A.Goldberg

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    #16
    First off, Tesla has not yet proven themselves to be a viable company. If the Model 3 is not successful Tesla will be in hot water. Lucky of steals, Musk can go out and beg for millions and people will give it to him. But that will only last so long. To this day as clever as Tesla is, they have massive issues with production and have yet to start earning a profit. Technically they're loosing $20,000 on every Model S they sell according to recent reports.

    Secondly, I have trouble believing a Tesla is the most reliable car you've ever owned... unless it's the only car you've owned or you haven't owned it long. Tesla has been universally noted as having poor reliability. Not only that, they also spend significantly more on warranty claims than any other car manufacturer. I know many people with Teslas, they love them, but none admit to them being anything close to shining examples of build quality or reliability.

    Thirdly, what makes Tesla unique isn't really its autonomous driving features. At this point full autonomy is out of most people's price range and will be for some time. What makes Tesla unique is the full electric drivetrain, which I don't believe to be something too difficult to start manufacturing. All you need is a battery and a motor. If Volvo can figure it out by 2019 in all their vehicles, surely other brands can too. Besides, a lot of this tech is probably going to be developed by 3rd parties and licensed to car manufacturers. For example, there are just a handful of batteries manufacturers in the world that make batteries suitable for vehicles.

    Teslas are cool, but they're expensive and in some cases impractical (driving long distances beyond the charging capability). But more than anything you're paying for technology. If you actually want an engaging car to drive or something with truly premium build quality, you'd look to the Germans.

    Tesla has a longggggg way to go before they can overtake the massive automotive market.
     
  17. Bug-Creator macrumors 6502

    Bug-Creator

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    #17
    All German (Japanese,French,Korean) car makers have atleast 1 electric in their portfolio, and the tech used isn't any different than what Tesla does.

    Problem is if priced at normal profits and without the Musk-hype they just don't sell well.

    Tesla might be able to secure an uppermarket niche in the long run, but just like most smartphones are cheaper Androids, most electric cars will come from more affordable brands.
     
  18. DearthnVader macrumors 6502

    DearthnVader

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    #18
    How, exactly did Ford getting investment from banks become a bailout?
     
  19. VulchR macrumors 68020

    VulchR

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    #19
    Actually collusion is often very stable (in some cases decades) and effective, requiring governments to break it such arrangements up. Usually it includes not only arrangements among the companies involved, but targeting competitors to gain an unfair advantage. I am no economist, but it seem to me their idealised models of the free market often do not take into account all the illegal behaviours we've seen from both companies and banks, such as fraud, monopolistic practices, etc
     
  20. diamond.g macrumors 603

    diamond.g

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    #21
    It is kind of a chicken and egg issue. They don't sell well because they are currently being marketed as utilitarian vehicles (with exception of Tesla). GM makes the Bolt and by all accounts it is a fine car. It also is apparently as fast as some hot hatches (in the 200hp class, the Golf R and Focus RS are better). Yet it isn't selling that well, why?

    If anything folks that drive electric should be thanking VW for getting caught cheating because now they have to spend billions improving the charging infrastructure.
     
  21. Bug-Creator macrumors 6502

    Bug-Creator

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    #22
    Most cars are being sold as "utilitarian vehicles" and if selfdriving cars really become a thing even less people will care about the badge 0-60 or anything else that currently sells cars >20k
     
  22. diamond.g macrumors 603

    diamond.g

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    #23
    In the US the image of the German (luxury, sorry VW) cars isn't one of utility. It is one of passion!! Otherwise why would anyone ever buy a MB or BMW (not to mention Porsche) when the utilitarian cars are so much cheaper...
     
  23. Bug-Creator macrumors 6502

    Bug-Creator

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    #24
    Sure, but my point was that Tesla is atm even more in that image-over-substance boat.

    I go one further:
    If selfdriving cars become the norm, owing one will make you an outlier.....

    Cos once that is true we'll all just tell Siri/Alexa/... that we gonna go to work while putting on our socks and by the time we finished breakfast there will be something standing at the curb to take us there.

    Might by an electric Smart, might be small bus shared with others heading the same way noone will care.

    Thats why you see the push coming from Google,Apple and Co and not from Ford,VW,MB or Toyota cos that will eventually reduce their current market by 90%.
     
  24. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    #25
    Sure,the tesla model 3 is a great car for people going short distances,with only a little luggage,on paved roads in or near major cities. But,there are some problems:
    It's expensive,a mid-size family car at the same price as a diesel propelled large 4x4 terrain SUV.
    It's low,on the roads where I drive,I sometimes in winter even get stuck with my vehicles,a Range Rover and a Willys jeep
    There has been reports of tesla cars running on bad roads,that because of bumps and potholes bursted into flames.
    Soo,the Tesla might be innovative,but for most people it's either too expensive,too fragile,too small or has too little range.
    If I want a car with tesla performance and range,I can buy a second hand hatchback at 1/10 of what the tesla would cost me.
     

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