Germans, French and Japanese form axis to destroy American carbiz
Uh-oh. Looks like a new international automaker alliance is fixing to commence a U-boat, kamikaze Zero and Vichy-soisse assault on Ford and Gummint (né General) Motors, the two remaining American carmakers. Yes, the Froggy-Japanese Renault-Nissan alliance and German Daimler — known here as the builder of Mercedes-Benz cars, Smart microcars, Freightliner and Sterling trucks, Thomas and Setra buses and Sprinter vans, not to mention the corporation that wrecked Chrysler — have announced they’re climbing into bed together to share technologies and platforms, which probably means that We Lost World War II But We’re Going to Own Your Allied Ass Motors can’t be far behind. And if FiatChrysler does a Mussolini and flips off Comrade Obama and hops in the sack with this klusterchittychittybangenbangen, I’m guessing the resulting daisy chain will spew enough lube to send the rest of the global car industry slipping and sliding down the hallway to oblivion.
Or maybe not. I just wanted to make a lame orgy joke. Sorry.
Anyway, a couple of things. First, what’s cracked me up for a few years is whenever I see a Nissan or Infiniti, typically a big-ass Titan pickup truck or Armada SUV, driving around with its butt-end plastered with right-wing bumper stickers. Why? Because the O’Reilly-incited Francophobe hammerheads behind the wheel have no idea they’re driving the product of a French automaker. Yep, Renault owns a controlling interest in Nissan, and has since 1999.
And second, Daimler’s Herr Doktor Dieter Zetsche, aka the Teutonic Mustache: Tell me this guy doesn’t play dress-up in liederhosen and one of those spiked World War I-era helmets. He’s known to Mopar-heads as the Antichrist for how Mercedes took a thriving car company circa 1998 and systematically drove it into the ditch, creating the possibility of the heretofore impossible: takeover by Fiat. (Which isn’t a bad thing, necessarily, because it will bring the Fiat Nuova 500, Alfa-Romeo and Lancia, the latter rebadged as Chryslers, back to the U.S., and Italian design at its best can be quite tumescence-inducing.)
Anyway, that banging sound you’re hearing are bricks falling out of executive rear ends in Dearborn and Detroit and hitting boardroom floors. Or maybe they’re laughing. Hell, I don’t know. —Jackson Griffith