We all recall how GM (and Toyota!) were against the new CAFE standards. We repeatedly were told it could not be done. In the short time since the law has passed, look at what we have been discussing on GMi:
Cobalt XFE on sale now and gets class leading mileage.
Tahoe and Silverado two mode hybrids on sale now and get class leading mileage.
1.4L turbo on the way for small cars.
The Traverse (and presumably all Lambdas) will get DI standard. If I recall correctly, it is estimated to get 27 mpg highway.
BAS+ will soon be here. It is promised to get significantly better mileage than the current BAS. I am not aware of any other company that has announced li-ion BAS.
The Volt is on track for a 2010 introduction. No other manufacturer has announced a similar product.
By next year, the 4 cyl/6 speed Malibu will be offered on all trim levels. It gets class leading mileage.
By next year, GM will be selling diesel half tons. Toyota also may be selling diesel Tundras, but it will not be beating GM to market.
Within a few years, GM will be offering alternatives to the body on frame truck: the Pontiac El Camino and the GMC unibody thing. Toyota has not anounced any similar products.
The Vue plug-in will be on sale within 2 years. It will offer class leading mileage, and there is no sign that the Prius will be plug-in or li-ion by that time.
Right now, GM is testing 100 fuel cell Equinoxes. The only other company currently testing fuel cells is Honda, and its program is not nearly as aggressive as GM's.
GM is selling more flex fuel vehicles than anyone.
I think all of this shows that GM is being very responsive not only to the CAFE law, but more importantly, to the demands of the marketplace. Again, all of these developments have come to light just in the last 1-2 years. More importantly, this is not the GM of old, which was always catching up to the competition. In all of the categories I listed, GM is class leading either in performance or in the introduction of new technology.
Keep up the good work, General. I look forward to the next two years during which time I predict some form of hybrid transmission or diesel power will be offered on every model, every model will be offered with a flex fuel engine, we will see significant weight reductions as platforms are redesigned, and turbos and direct injection will migrate to all platforms.