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The GMC Dinosaur.

Shouldn't it say "Greyhound" on the side?

I tried for a Camry. A Volvo. No dice. Tried for an Avalon. An Audi. Nope, sold out. No, they didn't have the Jag.

They didn't have much of anything, so I reserved the regular-sized SUV. An Explorer. But when I got to the Minneapolis Hertz there was a Yukon waiting for me.

Sweet Lord, what a wallowing, fishtailing, sluggish, top-heavy, clumsy monstrosity. The hippopotamus of vehicles. An atrocity on wheels. (Question for GMC's engineers: can you not go and peek inside someone else's car and see how to arrange a dashboard? Did they pay you by the button?) I keep hearing that American cars have gotten a lot better. And then I hit the rental counter and the cars themselves tell me different. The first car rental company that waves bye-bye to GM, Ford and Chrysler will have my business.

Here are three things at which we, Americans, suck: cars, air travel and cellphones.

It's odd, because we used to suck at relatively minor things like coffee, wine and food, and blow everyone else away when it came to anything technological. Now we make very good food and pretty good coffee, but we have cellphone service that would embarrass Mozambique, airlines and airports (see below) that would cause any responsible Japanese to commit ritual suicide, and make cars that are positively Soviet. This cannot be good. It cannot be good that in cars, planes and phones we are now notably inferior to the Europeans, while pulling even in the food and beverage department.

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“The GMC Dinosaur.”

  1. Blogger Objectivist Says:

    So to what do you attribute it?

  2. Blogger Internet Ronin Says:

    Unionism run rampant and protected monopolistic industries for starters.

  3. Blogger Pastor_Jeff Says:

    The sad irony is that American workers do make good cars -- they just make them for Toyota and Honda now, instead of the Big Three.

    Management and labor in Detroit have been stuck in their dysfunctional relationship for years. Meanwhile, the rest of the world goes ahead with actually making cars people want to buy.

    The almost unbelievable part is that Detroit's seen Japan in its rear view mirror for decades. They could have disassembled and copied a Toyota 25 years ago and been better off than they are now.

    We invented and dominated the auto industry. But short-sighted, greedy morons are more interested in pissing on each other than making good products.

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