America's fascination with the auto helped build and change the entire country. But as author Micheline Maynard writes, Detroit has lost its grip on American drivers by relying on overgrown distribution systems, styling myopia, reduced quality, brand mismanagement and family ownership. These factors, to varying degrees, combined to weaken the Big Three (Ford, General Motors and Chrysler). As an automotive journalist, Maynard apparently has all the facts, interviews and trade show vignettes to tell the story of the Big Three being replaced by non-U.S. manufacturers who simply do the job better. She also includes interviews with car shoppers and others who are not germane to her tale. Still, this is a powerful chronicle on the threatened, imminent demise of more American icons. We find this very valuable reading for marketing and human resource professionals, corporate change management executives and anyone interested in buying a car.
This is a fascinating account of how the Big Three American carmakers came to find themselves in their present parlous position. The only downside of the book is that it was written in 2003, and although it has an updated section it needs to be brought right up to date with the latest developments and the round of Chapter 11 bankruptcies.