FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wagoner Removed from GM; Edmunds.com Comments
SANTA MONICA, Calif. — March 30, 2009 — Rick Wagoner is stepping down from his position as CEO of General Motors. "In the end, this is less of an indictment of Rick's tenure as CEO and more about the political need for a scapegoat before unpopular loans could be offered, commented Edmunds.com CEO Jeremy Anwyl. "GM is certainly a company in distress, but under Ricks' leadership had been making solid progress. With the economy unraveling last year, Rick simply ran out of time."
In recent months, Wagoner had insisted that he was not leaving his job.
"Numerous people from various quarters called for the resignation of Wagoner, who led GM for the past eight years when it racked up billions in losses," reported Michelle Krebs, Editor of Edmunds' AutoObserver.com. "But he was committed to GM's success, and was frustrated that GM's progress in product, technology and the competitiveness of its workforce had not been fully appreciated."
The government has promised to guarantee warranties for Chrysler and General Motors as part of the assistance package.
"No one can blame car buyers who shied away from brands that were mentioned in the same breath as the word 'bankruptcy,'" stated Edmunds.com Consumer Advice Editor Philip Reed. "Now that their warranties are being guaranteed, Chrysler and GM vehicles are good deals which are definitely worth considering."
What does Wagoner's departure from GM mean for product development?
"Wagoner — as have many in Detroit — finally recognized that the auto industry needed to begin responding to growing demand for cleaner, greener vehicles if it was to remain competitive," observed John O'Dell, Editor of Edmunds' GreenCarAdvisor.com. "Looking ahead, the green agenda is going to continue to be pushed, and pushed hard, whoever is running the show, in part because Washington wants it."
Edmunds.com advocates for a consistent energy policy that maintains gas prices at a level that motivates car-buyers to strongly consider fuel efficient vehicles. This will allow automakers to focus on developing the vehicles in significant volumes with a reasonable expectation of selling them. Edmunds.com data shows a strong correlation between gas prices and consumer prioritization of fuel efficiency in their vehicle choices.
Edmunds.com spokespeople are available for interviews in Edmunds.com's television studio in its Santa Monica, Calif. headquarters and in its Detroit-area satellite office.
About Edmunds.com, Inc.
Edmunds.com, Inc. publishes four Web sites that empower, engage and educate automotive consumers and enthusiasts. Edmunds.com, the premier online resource for automotive consumer information, launched in 1995 as the first automotive information Web site. Its most popular feature, the Edmunds.com True Market Value® , is relied upon by millions of people seeking current transaction prices for new and used vehicles. Edmunds.com was named "Best Car Research Site" by Forbes ASAP, has been selected by consumers as the "Most Useful Web Site" according to every J.D. Power and Associates New Autoshopper.com Study(SM), was ranked first in the Survey of Car-Shopping Web Sites by The Wall Street Journal and was rated "#1" in Keynote's study of third-party automotive Web sites. Inside Line launched in January 2005 and is the most-read automotive enthusiast Web site. CarSpace launched in February 2006 and is an automotive social networking Web site and home to the oldest and most established automotive community. AutoObserver.com launched in 2007 and provides insightful automotive industry commentary and analysis. Edmunds Inc. is headquartered in Santa Monica, California, and maintains a satellite office in suburban Detroit.