The New G.M. Begins

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It’ll be a while before we know if this arrangement will work or not, but I can’t help but think a new G.M. that builds better, greener autos will be competitive in the future.

From NY Times:

“We deeply appreciate the support we’ve received during this historic transformation and will work hard to repay the trust and the money that so many have invested in G.M,” the chief executive, Fritz Henderson, said just a couple of hours after the company closed the sale of its good assets to a new, government-backed carmaker.

“The last 100 days has shown everyone, including ourselves, that a company not known for quick action can indeed move very fast,” Mr. Henderson said. “Starting today, we want to take that intensity, the decisiveness and the speed of these last several weeks, and transfer it from the battlefield triage of the bankruptcy process to the day-to-day operations of the new company.”

G.M.’s goal, Mr. Henderson said, is to design, build and sell the best vehicles in the world, something that the company had forgotten. He listed the company’s priorities, in order, as its customers, its cars and its culture.

Here are some of the changes that have already happened…

The new company will be much smaller, with brands like Saturn, Hummer, Opel and Pontiac in the process of being sold or closed. It will also have a smaller sales network, with thousands of dealers having been cut during the reorganization.

Its management ranks also will be smaller. Mr. Henderson said the company is eliminating 35 percent of its executive positions, including the job of Troy Clarke, who has served as G.M.’s North American president. Mr. Henderson will assume control over the company’s North American operations, and he was not specific about Mr. Clarke’s future.

Also, it looks like they’re partnering with eBay to auction cars in California, so they’re already starting to innovate and find unique ways to connect with consumers.

What are your thoughts? Should they have been liquidated instead of going this route? And, if so, why would that be better for us?