The Long Road to Redemption

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Thread: The Long Road to Redemption

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    GMI Australia Correspondent Premium Member mikmak's Avatar
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    The Long Road to Redemption

    The Long Road to Redemption

    07 June 2017

    Michael McWilliams
    Australia Correspondent

    GMInsidenews.com

    On instagram (@LoflytKULTURE) I recently asked what it will take for potential customers to forgive Holden for what ever trespasses they have perpetrated, and judge the products on their merit. It’s an interesting question because their road to ill repute is different to that of other brands. At the turn of the century Holden where the second most trusted brand in the country.

    Let’s take Hyundai for example. They have been in the country for 31 years, and are now in a position where they are the third most popular brand in the country. In fact, they are the most popular brand in Australia which doesn’t have a light commercial truck (read pick up or ute).

    I have many stories about people who have sworn off the South Korean manufacturer thanks to unreliable products that have come apart in owners hands. Most recently, however, I saw a middle aged guy looking at an i20 for sale on the side of the road.
    "Nothing remarkable about that" I hear you say.
    I concur, but parked next to it was his i30, a few years old but in good condition.
    Is it too much to assume that he is considering the i20 for his son/daughters first car?


    Of course, this isn’t limited to Hyundai. Every manufacturer needs to earn their chops. That includes a period of self-improvement which often requires a domestic product acquiring the functional demands of foreign markets.
    I’ve recently spent a great deal of time behind the wheel of many South Korean products, and each one draws me a little closer to that point where I no longer regard them as a second choice.

    Rather, I now have the Kia Sorento as a lead runner in my families quest to replace our much loved Holden Commodore wagon. More on that another day, but 5 years ago, they didn’t even feature as a third string option.
    So what has changed to allow the Sorento a look in?


    Why do I consider the Elantra GT a worthy daily commuter?
    Why did I recommend a co-worker look at an Optima GT?

    Was it marketing? Well I just searched my brain for a memorable Kia ad…. still searching……”we’re living in the back of the carrr” (nope that’s the catchy earworm Mitsubishi ad).

    It must be the product then. Having driven the Sorento extensively, I can’t say it’s a match for the Commodore wagon, but as with the other Kia products, it has the basics right.
    So perhaps it's not the product... well, not just the product.

    The reality is that all of those things make up a brands reputation. When you back it up with a segment leading warranty, just like Hyundai (5 years) and Kia (7 years), the result is trust.
    That is what the Koreans are earning, year after year.

    Equally, that is what Holden has lost recently, as they allowed older generation Korean products to die on their vine/lots.

    I've driven the new Astra, and it is very good. The RS has an amazing amount of technology, drives like a Holden should, delivers exceptional economy, and even manages to provide a solid amount of value despite immigrating all the way from Europe.

    But that is not enough. More new product, better marketing and longer warranty, is the only way Holden is going to earn back the consumers trust, and claw their way back to being in a position where a middle aged guy is standing next to his Commodore, looking at a used Astra for his son or daughters first car.

    Oh, and time. There are no shortcuts on the road to redemption.

    See more Korean Stuff here: #KOREADRIVEN

    See more of the Astra here: #INSTASTRALOGIC
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Having Seen The Light, MakMik, I can offer you absolutely NO useful information. But that's why I'm here!

    Long long ago in a place far away, I thought KIA (and Hyundai, though I did have a colleague in the early '90s who had the one little car Hyundai made...stick, four, BIG warranty IIRC; she loved it, could not comment enough about it in a positive way) was a good punchline to a car joke.

    e.g. To Lexus owner: Hey! How do you like your new KIA, bubba?
    Lexus owner: Waaaaaaaaaah! Mommie mommie!!

    In late 2007 I sold my trusty Impala. Hmmmm. I think that may have been the last Amurrican car that was trouble-free. Rutt row!

    The Depression hit, car lots often had Slim Pickins. I was looking for something small. The only small car on the Chibby lot was a panel truck HHR. Suzuki (SX4), Hyundai (Elantra), and KIA were chock full of cars. KIA lot had what seemed like dozens of base model Spectras with stick shifts. THAT impressed me. Not the cars, necessarily, but that so many people actually knew how to drive sticks.

    I drove those three sedans. SX4, Elantra, Spectra. They were quite similar. I liked the Suzuki a lot, I loved the front quarter window which really gave a good view out. But Suzuki dealers were few and far between.
    The Elantra and Spectra both drove nicely. I went with the KIA, which also went against my rule of ABS Always. It didn't have ABS, it did have a very well set-up 4Wdisc arrangement with great feel.

    Kept the Spectra five trouble-free years, some sort of modern record for me. Meanwhile d-i-l had a Rondo that was T-boned in SF by your typical non-driving Lexus nutcake. Replaced with a BOF 4WD Sorento V6 which soldiered on until a few months ago when a new 2017 Sorento LX V6 entered the picture.

    Let's see...I leased a 2011 Chrysler 200 V6. Nice car, toxic upholstery, should have demanded a re-upholstery job. Trannie was hinky, three reflashes helped but did not cure.
    Bought a 2008 GP GXP. Major AM radio trouble, compounded by absolutely idiotic incompetent inconsiderate Buick "service" department. Also a rear strut went bad. Before I traded it. Also GPS was junk.
    2011 Charger. Bookoo troubles with HVAC/radio. Should have Lemon Law'ed it but didn't. My error.
    Meanwhile I had 2013 and 2015 Souls. Both mechanically trouble-free if a bit harsh in the ride department.
    My brief Challenger fling had GPS issues but I decided I didn't want it. Gone.
    My Maz6 drives great and has great MPG, a quirk in the instruments makes the right side pod near-invisible in daylight conditions. Also it's low so it causes pain to wife, that's not the car's fault though.

    Impala was last 'murrican car that was trouble-free. All six KIAs were solid. My d-i-l's Sorento did suffer trannie failure. I presume she had it serviced regularly. It cost her $25 for one bridge fee for the tow job to fix it.

    Not everyone loves the Korean cars. But my experience has been excellent.

    Before the Impala I had a 2003 Accord LX. Rear drums...in the shop numerous times because they were always out of round. My two other Accords were trouble-free. My VW TDi suffered window and lock failures regularly.

    Hope this adds to the confusion.

    In US-America, KIA has had a great ad campaign over the years, starting with the hamster cage ads. Real hamsters, not actors.
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    I was rather amused and satisfied with the Soul as a daily. It was the basic 2.0 motah but was a great size and quite comfy. #kiayeonghon

    I think your input adds a lot to the commentary!
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Quote Originally Posted by mikmak View Post
    I was rather amused and satisfied with the Soul as a daily. It was the basic 2.0 motah but was a great size and quite comfy. #kiayeonghon

    I think your input adds a lot to the commentary!
    Thakks, Mik. Your check is in the mail!
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    I think PART of the problem facing Holden is for a LONG time they where a ONE car maker and the "OTHER" stuff was forgettable at best
    so your example of the DAD looking for his daughter's first car OR a MPV for the wife he HAS to go to a different brand

    I have never owned a Hyundai OR MODERN KIA as I doubt a 86 Besta is the BEST to judge reliability and the "ASIA motors" era it was a Korean made Mazda Bongo with Mazda grade leaking valve guide inserts

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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Quote Originally Posted by mikmak View Post

    ……”we’re living in the back of the carrr” (nope that’s the catchy earworm Mitsubishi ad).
    Thanks for confirming those lyrics! Because every time I hear that baffling choice of jingle, it makes me wonder how it has descended to this; a major car brand targeting homeless people?? Yes, Australian house prices are beyond ridiculous, but come on!
    ....
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    GMI Australia Correspondent Premium Member mikmak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nota View Post
    Thanks for confirming those lyrics! Because every time I hear that baffling choice of jingle, it makes me wonder how it has descended to this; a major car brand targeting homeless people?? Yes, Australian house prices are beyond ridiculous, but come on!
    hahaha maybe that's the intent.

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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Yep - a family friend who is one of those old fashioned fastidious car enthusiasts (has a better than mint condition first gen Prado) has an Accent for his wife and an i20 for each of his teenage daughters. Dare I say it, the Sorrento is developing a name for itself as the pick of the sub-premiums.

    For me, the advertising GM has inflicted on Holden has just reinforced the bad feelings I've developed over the last few years. I still love my Commodore, but within the next few weeks it will be up for sale.

    I'm not a big Facebooker, but I do follow Holden and it does prove that they don't have a clue. A recent post about Nick Percat's paint job (rainbow one week, pink the next) just showed how hard they trying to alienate their traditional buyers. I have no issue with them trying to chase the LGBT and female markets, but the comments were written in such a way to suggest they didn't want a heterosexual male family man as a customer any more.

    There are still a stack of almost new Insignia VXR's for under $35K - can't do it though. Mind you, now Subaru have put a stupid electric park brake in the MY18 CVT WRX I have to think hard about if I can still get one.

    I fear that the road to redemption looks like this:

    Last edited by isszy; 06-08-2017 at 05:25 AM.
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    GMI Australia Correspondent Premium Member mikmak's Avatar
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    The funny thing is, Holden are working so hard at advertising, but it seems to be water off a ducks back. They need to work harder at the product side before they make any gains IMHO. Then again, the point of the article is that Holden have higher expectations because that is what they used to deliver. It's going to behard for customers to accept that they just can't deliver what they used to.
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    I can't remember the last time I saw a Holden ad on TV. Plenty of Ford and Toyota ads but nothing for Holden. Well nothing memorable anyway.

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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Didn't see this one ?



    Personally I always loved my Dad's Holdens.
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Quote Originally Posted by isszy View Post
    Yep - a family friend who is one of those old fashioned fastidious car enthusiasts (has a better than mint condition first gen Prado) has an Accent for his wife and an i20 for each of his teenage daughters. Dare I say it, the Sorrento is developing a name for itself as the pick of the sub-premiums.

    For me, the advertising GM has inflicted on Holden has just reinforced the bad feelings I've developed over the last few years. I still love my Commodore, but within the next few weeks it will be up for sale.

    I'm not a big Facebooker, but I do follow Holden and it does prove that they don't have a clue. A recent post about Nick Percat's paint job (rainbow one week, pink the next) just showed how hard they trying to alienate their traditional buyers. I have no issue with them trying to chase the LGBT and female markets, but the comments were written in such a way to suggest they didn't want a heterosexual male family man as a customer any more.

    There are still a stack of almost new Insignia VXR's for under $35K - can't do it though. Mind you, now Subaru have put a stupid electric park brake in the MY18 CVT WRX I have to think hard about if I can still get one.

    I fear that the road to redemption looks like this:

    I fear you're correct about that shovel-ready infrastructure job. Yuk yuk.

    As for the PC brainwashing infection that's going on, it's criminal and it apparently removes the ability to logically process information, much less seek it out. Guilt-riddled brainwashees, should they get their way, could possibly discover too late that their #1 hated group is the very reason they enjoy 21st century western civilization. Look at the alternatives.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikmak View Post
    The funny thing is, Holden are working so hard at advertising, but it seems to be water off a ducks back. They need to work harder at the product side before they make any gains IMHO. Then again, the point of the article is that Holden have higher expectations because that is what they used to deliver. It's going to behard for customers to accept that they just can't deliver what they used to.
    There's working hard and there's working effectively. I'm reminded of a former POTUS who often 'splained he was "working hord for the American people." While I doubt the veracity of his statement, "working hard" does not necessarily accomplish much other than being tired at the close of business.

    Quote Originally Posted by isszy View Post
    Didn't see this one ?



    Personally I always loved my Dad's Holdens.
    Amen bruthuh!

    Hmmm...are those Aussies perchance? My wife immediately recognized the accent, her gwams was Australian.

    As for the richardhead tattboy who wants a caah that doesn't look like his dad's car, well screw you boy. Paint it pink. What a dumb statement.
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Quote Originally Posted by Neanderthal View Post
    I fear you're correct about that shovel-ready infrastructure job. Yuk yuk.

    As for the PC brainwashing infection that's going on, it's criminal and it apparently removes the ability to logically process information, much less seek it out. Guilt-riddled brainwashees, should they get their way, could possibly discover too late that their #1 hated group is the very reason they enjoy 21st century western civilization. Look at the alternatives.



    There's working hard and there's working effectively. I'm reminded of a former POTUS who often 'splained he was "working hord for the American people." While I doubt the veracity of his statement, "working hard" does not necessarily accomplish much other than being tired at the close of business.



    Amen bruthuh!

    Hmmm...are those Aussies perchance? My wife immediately recognized the accent, her gwams was Australian.

    As for the richardhead tattboy who wants a caah that doesn't look like his dad's car, well screw you boy. Paint it pink. What a dumb statement.
    You have to ask, if he doesn't want one that looks like his dads one, why is he even buying one?

    There are plenty of ads about at the moment, including the patently annoying Trax ad where it's all made on mobile. Personally I think that's a sound premise, but the execution with the guy "accidentally" calling one of the mobiles used to shoot the ad, and therefore ruining the take is grade A weak sauce.
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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Evil begets evil Mr. President. Shooting will only make it stronger.

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    Re: The Long Road to Redemption

    Quote Originally Posted by isszy View Post
    Mind you, now Subaru have put a stupid electric park brake in the MY18 CVT WRX I have to think hard about if I can still get one.
    I'd be less worried about the electric park given the CVT in a WRX. I know some people like them, but I can't stand CVTs. Even with the mode to emulate fixed gear ratios, the CVT car sucked cf the manual. An Aisin TCC automatic would've been a shoe-in. Be interesting to see which way you go after the SV6.

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