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  #1  
Old 04-02-2009, 12:09 PM
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Unhappy * Germany Scrapping Program Boosts Sales - So...? *

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German Auto Sales Soar In March
By Geir Moulson, Associated Press Writer
Manufacturing.Net - April 02, 2009


BERLIN (AP) -- Auto sales in Germany soared last month to their highest level since 1992 thanks to a powerful boost from a new car-scrapping bonus, an industry group said Thursday. However, exports fell by a quarter.

New car registrations in March were up 40 percent on the year to 401,000, the VDA group said. It said that was the highest volume since the early 1990s, when Germany was enjoying a post-reunification boom.

Over the whole of the first quarter, new car registrations were up 18 percent to 868,100, VDA said.

New registrations of German companies' cars rose 27 percent to 244,400 in March, while foreign brands saw a 65 percent increase to 156,600.

The surge in March followed a 21 percent increase in sales in February.

As part of a wider euro50 billion ($66 billion) economic stimulus plan, the government earlier this year introduced a euro2,500 bonus for people who scrap aging cars and buy new ones.

The government originally set aside euro1.5 billion -- enough to cover about 600,000 sales -- but has made clear over the past week that it will expand the funding to keep the program going for the rest of this year.

"Consumers' concern about an early end to the ... bonus apparently led to a rush by buyers in March," VDA chairman Matthias Wissmann said in a statement.

VDA said it now expects 2009 sales in Germany to come in "significantly over" last year's level of 3.09 million cars.

However, "the currently positive market results in Germany cannot hide the seriousness of the situation to which the German car industry is exposed in particular on worldwide export markets," Wissmann said.

In March, Germany's exports dropped by 25 percent compared with a year earlier, with 274,900 cars sent abroad. Over the first quarter, they dropped by 38 percent to 713,700.

Total car production was off 20 percent last month at 895,800. In the first quarter, it declined by a third to just over 1 million.

VDA said there was no sign yet of most major export markets having stabilized.

It said foreign orders were down 26 percent in March and 32 percent in the first quarter.

Germany, which went into recession in the third quarter of last year and is suffering from decreasing demand for a wide range of exports, is home to car makers such as Daimler AG, Porsche SE, Volkswagen AG and BMW AG.

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Guess the "spare parts/Pick-n-Pull" market is going to hell...collectors keeping their prizes together and roadworthy are going to have a harder time of it...

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'10 - Dakota SXT - Daily Ride / ≈ 172.5K
.'76 - 450SLC - 107.024.12 / < .89.20 K
..'77 - 280E - 123.033.12 / > 128.20 K
...'67 - El Camino - 283ci / > 207.00 K
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.....'87 - G20 Sportvan / > 206.00 K
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  #2  
Old 04-02-2009, 04:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgburg View Post
Guess the "spare parts/Pick-n-Pull" market is going to hell...collectors keeping their prizes together and roadworthy are going to have a harder time of it...
Yup. They want to pass the same thing over here. It's funny, one of the things that the Big 3 got screwed by was making cars that only lasted a few years so that people would buy new ones. Now they want to make that a law.
Collectors is one thing, but being poor or getting your daughter that car on her sweet sixteen is going to suck a lot worse.
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  #3  
Old 04-02-2009, 09:28 PM
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Its still cheaper to keep an old car going even if you have to buy all the parts for it new, than it is to buy a new car.

I mean, for our MB fleet, I'd say a good 75-80% of parts I use are new....if not more. And a lot of the junkyard parts I install I didn't technically "need" to....most of it was upgrades or swaps for something slightly better.
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  #4  
Old 04-03-2009, 12:00 AM
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Originally Posted by pawoSD View Post
Its still cheaper to keep an old car going even if you have to buy all the parts for it new, than it is to buy a new car.
For now.

Quote:
I mean, for our MB fleet, I'd say a good 75-80% of parts I use are new....if not more.
As the cars disappear, so do the owners wanting new parts. No cars, no customers, no parts manufactured.
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  #5  
Old 04-03-2009, 01:45 AM
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Originally Posted by tankdriver View Post
Yup. They want to pass the same thing over here. It's funny, one of the things that the Big 3 got screwed by was making cars that only lasted a few years so that people would buy new ones. Now they want to make that a law.
Collectors is one thing, but being poor or getting your daughter that car on her sweet sixteen is going to suck a lot worse.
It looks like it is a program, not a law, in other words it's voluntary. If they offered a program like that here it may get a lot of old polluting junkers off the road and help people into a better more dependable car. Anyone who didn't want to participate or couldn't afford to wouldn't have to.
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:29 AM
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I am of two minds on this one.
On the hand, I recognize the desirability of getting junkers off the road. I have seen some real trash. What frosts me most is someone getting "historic" plates ( and insuraqnce rates) on a rusted out hulk of a land yacht. So much rust that fenders flap in the breeze. Get them off the road.

On the other hand, I am an old car nut. I love restoring them--even fairly common cars. Not everyonbe drove a cad. Barritz coupe, but every one over a certain age rode in a Ford Falcon, or its derivative Mustang. Crushing parts cars makes restoration expensive.
Get the junkers off the road, but don't indiscriminately crush them all.

On the other, other hand....
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  #7  
Old 04-03-2009, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by mwood View Post
It looks like it is a program, not a law, in other words it's voluntary. If they offered a program like that here it may get a lot of old polluting junkers off the road and help people into a better more dependable car. Anyone who didn't want to participate or couldn't afford to wouldn't have to.
While it is voluntary, if the guv is giving money to people they do I as a tax payer get to "opt out" of my taxes? Anyone think this will go by the minds of car company execs.... hhhmmmm... the cars need to last 8 years.... do we really need the higher quality parts? I have yet to see one study that proves there is less damage to the planet caused by one older car that lasts 30 years than the combined effects of a new car: raw materials, shipping of raw materials, refining of said materials, designing, manufacturing, testing, marketing, shipping of complete car, building new dealerships, recycling materials of new car... etc. If that new car lasts 10 years then double or triple those environmental costs VS many MB diesels.
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  #8  
Old 04-04-2009, 02:36 AM
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American cars are junk. Always have been. Anyone with a mind can figure out the cost saving benefit of owning and driving a Mercedes-Benz over a junk whatever American brand. I've saved a fortune driving MB diesels for a few decades now, versus the American junk I used to try to keep on the road.
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  #9  
Old 04-04-2009, 04:37 AM
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Originally Posted by tankdriver View Post
As the cars disappear, so do the owners wanting new parts. No cars, no customers, no parts manufactured.
They also don't have to keep making old parts. The law says they have to supply parts for 6 years after production end (I'm not sure on the exact number, it may be a state-state thing), after that its voluntary. Luckily Mercedes is one of the smart manufacturers that never stops making parts. I know Ford stops making most parts as soon as they can.
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Skid Row Joe View Post
American cars are junk. Always have been. Anyone with a mind can figure out the cost saving benefit of owning and driving a Mercedes-Benz over a junk whatever American brand. I've saved a fortune driving MB diesels for a few decades now, versus the American junk I used to try to keep on the road.

I think I take exception to the " always have been" part of your post.
If you mean " I my experience, or lifetime", then it might stand.
If you really mean " always", then you just don't know your automotive history.

There was a time when Cadillac was truly, " The Standard of the world".
Pierce, Auburn, Cord, Marmon, Duesenberg, and Packard are just a few names that come readily to mind that were the best of the best. ( Remember the phrase, "its a real doosey"?--that was slang meaning REALLY good, and a reference to the Duesenberg.) I am sure I inadvertently left out a few good makes; no insult intended.
Even the lowly Ford T and A, humble as they were, had a build quality that was setting the standards for the world.
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Old 04-04-2009, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by MS Fowler View Post
... There was a time when Cadillac was truly, " The Standard of the world". ... Pierce, Auburn, Cord, Marmon, Duesenberg, and Packard are just a few names that come readily to mind that were the best of the best. ( Remember the phrase, "its a real doosey"?--that was slang meaning REALLY good, and a reference to the Duesenberg.) I am sure I inadvertently left out a few good makes; no insult intended.
Even the lowly Ford T and A, humble as they were, had a build quality that was setting the standards for the world.
That may be true, back in the day...but during the last 20-30 years, unless you stayed on top of the maintenance, garaged your baby and it only had 20K on the clock, it's a "frame-off" project to start with, not a little "buff-out" here and a "buff-out" there...

The S-10 I'm driving...started driving it in Dec.'99...it has 294K on the clock and I have paint coming off the cab...no rust underneath where the paint was...just a shoddy job of primer...

The Mercedes? You've got to GRIND to get to the primer.

Nuff' said on that one...
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M. G. Burg
'10 - Dakota SXT - Daily Ride / ≈ 172.5K
.'76 - 450SLC - 107.024.12 / < .89.20 K
..'77 - 280E - 123.033.12 / > 128.20 K
...'67 - El Camino - 283ci / > 207.00 K
....'75 - Yamaha - 650XS / < 21.00 K
.....'87 - G20 Sportvan / > 206.00 K
......'85 - 4WINNS 160 I.O. / 140hp
.......'74 - Honda CT70 / Real 125

.
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. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ~ Yogi Berra ~
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  #12  
Old 04-04-2009, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by mgburg View Post
That may be true, back in the day...but during the last 20-30 years, unless you stayed on top of the maintenance, garaged your baby and it only had 20K on the clock, it's a "frame-off" project to start with, not a little "buff-out" here and a "buff-out" there...

The S-10 I'm driving...started driving it in Dec.'99...it has 294K on the clock and I have paint coming off the cab...no rust underneath where the paint was...just a shoddy job of primer...

The Mercedes? You've got to GRIND to get to the primer.

Nuff' said on that one...
I have restored 2 cars that illustrate well your point. Both were the same age when I started the projects.
'64 Falcon Sprint Convertible, one of 2706 made, probably less than 50 remaining. I rebuild the engine, brakes, and susopension, replaced the floors, inner rockers, torque boxes and rear fenders due to rust. Stripped it to bare chassis and repainted and reupholstered from the ground up.

1982 MB 300SD replaced all brake components and hard lines. Replaced the big rubber bushing on the front suspension lower control arm. Stripped the paint and repainted, and redyed the seats, replacing one piece of leather across the top of the rear seat.

The MB was a glorified repaint, the Falcon a total rebuild. Same age.
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Old 04-04-2009, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by MS Fowler View Post
I have restored 2 cars that illustrate well your point. Both were the same age when I started the projects.
'64 Falcon Sprint Convertible, one of 2706 made, probably less than 50 remaining. I rebuild the engine, brakes, and susopension, replaced the floors, inner rockers, torque boxes and rear fenders due to rust. Stripped it to bare chassis and repainted and reupholstered from the ground up.

1982 MB 300SD replaced all brake components and hard lines. Replaced the big rubber bushing on the front suspension lower control arm. Stripped the paint and repainted, and redyed the seats, replacing one piece of leather across the top of the rear seat.

The MB was a glorified repaint, the Falcon a total rebuild. Same age.
And the Falcon probably cost 1/3 of what the Mercedes cost new. And I'd much rather have the restored Falcon than the Merc, plus when the restorations were done I'd guess the Falcon was worth much more than the Merc.

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