Are SUV's Dead or in a Coma?
Another plant dedicated to making SUV's closed this week leaving each of the Big Three with one plant each for making the once popular type of car. As recently as a few years ago, the SUV was the profit driver for the car companies. But with the spike in the price of gas earlier in the year, consumers started moving away from the gas guzzlers. With the near collapse of the economy a further nail was put into the SUV coffin. But are SUV's dead or will they see a resurrection some sunny day in the future?
Reeling from its financial problems and a collapsing S.U.V. market, General Motors on Tuesday closed its factories in this city and in Moraine, Ohio, marking the passing of an era when big S.U.V.’s ruled the road. The moves followed the shutdown last Friday of Chrysler’s factory in Newark, Del., which produced full-size S.U.V.’s.
The last Chevrolet Tahoe rolled off the line here in Janesville shortly after 7 a.m. in the 90-year-old plant, which had built more than 3.7 million big S.U.V.’s since the early 1990s.
Most of the plant’s 1,100 remaining workers were not scheduled to work the final day, but many showed up for an emotional closing ceremony. Dan Doubleday, who had 22 years on the job, broke down in the plant’s snowy parking lot afterward.