• Dec 27, 2008
Every time GM turns a corner it seems to come face to face with another obstacle. The latest setback concerns supplier Cadence, LLC, which provides interior parts for the 2010 Camaro. Cadence declared bankruptcy in August, and is now in liquidation proceedings. To GM's chagrin, joining Cadence in its descent into commercial tar pits are the specialized machines that GM needs to make parts for the Camaro.

If GM can't get the tooling, there are certain to be disruptions at assembly plants and then on down the food chain. The General would then need to pay to have the tooling made again while it looks for another supplier, a cost GM describes as "substantial." GM would like to have a new supplier in place by January 12, 2009 because Camaro production is slated to begin on February 16, with deliveries in mid-March.

So far, it's unclear as to who actually owns the machines in question - Cadence or GM - and Cadence has had nothing to say on the matter. Regardless, if GM doesn't get its way, then it has to spend a chunk of the money it just fought for to recover old ground. The most recent precedent isn't promising: Chrysler tried to get the tooling from bankrupt parts supplier Plastech, and was denied. Thanks for the tip, Jerry!

[Source: The Wall Street Journal]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 24 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      I am sympathetic to the automakers, but this instance is a little bit of karma, for the automakers' pummeling of suppliers throughout the '90s to reduce parts prices.
      • 6 Years Ago
      this issue is one of their own creation.

      ALL the automakers have been unbelievablly brutal on their suppliers, demanding lower and lower prices when material costs were rising. the only thing that kept the supplier's ship afloat was 24/7 production. when that stopped, so did everything else. look for more supplier companies going out of business in the near future.

      this had been predicted for the past few months; yet the import fanboys never quite grasped the simple concept that a failure of even one of the Big 3 ("let 'em die!!) would have dire consequences for all the remaining companies, even their beloved transplants. these same suppliers sell to EVERYONE. no volume=no profit. no profit, doors close, people out of work. no winners.

      some suppliers have made the fatal mistake of putting all of their eggs in one basket, like investing everything you had with Bernie Madoff.

      a good example of this was the company that supplied the sliding roofs for the quickly-departed GMC Envoy XUV from a few years back. they built a plant right next to GM's Oklahoma City Envoy plant for the conversion; sales were a total flop, just like they were for the similar Studebaker Wagaonaire back in the 60s. it was like an answer for the question that no one asked.

      the supplier went under, and sued GM. still in court. no winners.

      AZMIke
        • 6 Years Ago
        Well, Toyota is slipping so the perception is likely to change but it takes time for opinion to catch up as evidenced by so much hatred for Detroit when the quality has been up for some time. But it isn't always the supplier. Sometimes it's a bad design which comes from the auto company that causes the problem. Example: Toyota Tundra exhaust/brake issues and camshaft issues. The exhaust hangers were cutting brake lines. That may well have been a bad design from Toyota rather than the suppliers. However, the Tundra broken camshaft issue was probably due to improperly made camshafts which may well have been the supplier's fault.
        • 6 Years Ago

        What is surprising is that though the automakers source from the same suppliers, there is so much "claimed" difference in quality and reliability between the various makes. Why are Toyota's perceived to be more reliable than say Chevy's, if much of the parts used come from the same suppliers?
        • 6 Years Ago
        The difference between Toyota's and GM's interiors has to do with the materials the automaker specifies. Whether it's a hard, grainy plastic, or a material soft to the touch with a pleasing grain. I remember the first time I sat in a Pontiac Solstice. The hard, grainy plastic door panels reminded me of the ones in my first car, a '75 Chevy Vega with the base interior.

        The domestic automakers have started making quality interior materials and design one of their big care abouts, and it shows in some of their newer offerings, like the Chevy Malibu.
        • 6 Years Ago
        AZMike:

        Very well thought out comment. Thanks for the insight.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The planet gets a break.

      The last thing we need is a new run of Gas Guzzlers hitting the roads.

        • 6 Years Ago
        Let me make the decision on what I buy and what I drive.

        If you don't like the "gas guzzlers" don't buy one. Have fun in your driving appliance.

        For some people its more than just transportation A to B.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I didn't even need to scroll to the replies to know that you were gonna get flamed to crisps. Keep that fire suit on buddy, you'll need it.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I don't believe anybody is forcing you buy or drive a gas guzzler. Keep driving your Camry or Accord, it really helps the economy. Dumb Ass
        • 6 Years Ago
        There's a prius post on autoblog today also.
        It should really excite you, although i have not read it, the title suggests the blueman group is involved.
        Do us all a favor and spend your time reading and posting in that article.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "Secondly, what you buy and how much gas you use, determines the demand for gas, and the affordability of gas for all of us. We are all that close to bankruptcy with $140 barrel's of oil."

        Do us a favor (other than not posting here, but you've already skipped that part) and look up the price of a barrel of oil. Last time I checked, it was under $50, and the Saudi's are trying to hold an emergency meeting to RAISE the price.
      • 6 Years Ago
      This problem looks like it might propagate to other GM models coming into production. I hope things get better, I'm def interested in a chevy volt.
      • 6 Years Ago
      So let me get this straight. GM drives the suppliers costs down to negative margins, then when suppliers go under, GM sues for their products? Just wow...
      • 6 Years Ago
      Inb4 this is somehow GM's fault for "lack of foresight" or some other bs.
      • 6 Years Ago
      soooo THATS why they decided to offer a bare chassis.
      hahaha
      • 6 Years Ago
      this is ridiculous, of course GM should get the tooling. who in the hell else would even want them? how about GM reimburse the scrap yard for lost revenue? what is that? few grand at best?

      dashboard shaped coffee tables?
      • 6 Years Ago
      When tooling is not shared tooling(with other companies)GM owns the tooling, it is bought and paid for, that is in all instances, not just here and it's industry wide. I really don't know what the problem would be, I'm sure GM saw it that way also or they would have claimed them before the bankruptcy.
      • 6 Years Ago

      But where will GM get the cash to pay the lawyers?
        • 6 Years Ago
        With the bailout money of course...
      • 6 Years Ago
      i guess this gives GM a chance to bring a better interior for the Camaro (a much needed improvement)

      but, if GM has not payed the supplier for the tooling yet, then they should buy it from them. If GM did pay for the tooling (likely not, and i'm assuming it is amortized in the piece cost) then it should be handed over to them,
        • 6 Years Ago
        Really? What makes you an expert on interiors? You probably haven't even sat in one.

        Let me guess, you "sat in one at a show", or your "cousin is an automotive journalist", or your "brother saw one up close".

        How can you come to the conclusion that the Camaro needs an improved interior when you probably haven't seen one up close, or sat in one.

        The people who have actually had a chance to sit in, and drive these cars, the journalists, have mostly said the interior was nice, and of good quality.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The fallout has already begun...
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