Yahoo.com: Angry Ford dealer in SC blasts imports in ads

From Yahoo.com: Angry Ford dealer in SC blasts imports in ads

SAVANNAH, Ga. – A Ford dealer angered over the proposed bailout of U.S. automakers blames the nation’s sour economy on Congress and criticized buyers of Japanese cars, calling the vehicles “rice ready … not road ready” in a radio ad.

O.C. Welch, who owns a dealership near Savannah in Hardeeville, S.C., began airing the minute-long ad on a dozen stations in the area over the weekend. The ad sounds more like a talk-radio tirade than a sales pitch.

“All you people that buy all your Toyotas and send that money to Japan, you know, when you don’t have a job to make your Toyota car payment, don’t come crying to me,” Welch says in the ad. “All those cars are rice ready. They’re not road ready.”

Floyd Mori, executive director of the Japanese American Citizens League, said Welch’s remarks evoke anti-Asian sentiments often aimed at Japanese and Chinese immigrants to the U.S. from the 1930s through World War II. He also noted many Japanese automakers’ cars are manufactured in America.

“Rice Ready?  Ooooh, that’s clever. Not road ready? Not according to families who flock to buy the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord.  People vote with their feet and their pocket books, it’s the American way.

Spouting anti-Asian sentiment isn’t going to turn around the auto industry.  I hear constantly that the American auto makers have closed the quality gap.  Well, that just isn’t good enough anymore.  To win back customers with a damaged brand, you need to knock the consumer’s socks off with a product that they can’t get anywhere else. 

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  • Reply Neil December 10, 2008 at 11:26 pm

    People have the rights to buy what kinds of car they want with their hard-earning money.The big three cannot get customers’ trust: quality,gas-efficiency,and smaller model.The government should let collapse these 3 beggers.Taxpayers deserve quality.

  • Reply Sharon L. December 11, 2008 at 8:58 am

    I have been to that car dealer. lol.
    The big three need to stop letting the auto unions boss them around. They have basically allowed a noose to be tightened around their neck and can no longer be competitive with other manufacturers due to union demands.

  • Reply MT December 11, 2008 at 10:43 am

    I think it’s easy to blame the labor unions, but the cost of labor only accounts for approximately 10% of the car cost. If they built the car for free, it would only decrease the cost of a car by only a few thousand. I think management is primarily to blame for poor strategy and not thinking far enough ahead. Why do we have to look to the Japanese for small cars and Hybrid technology?

  • Reply MT December 11, 2008 at 10:58 am

    I don’t necessarily think that letting the big 3 collapse is the right idea either. Bankruptcy would allow the companies to reorganize more drastically, re-negotiate with the union and creditors. However, the trade-off might be even less confidence and desire to buy American cars. Bankruptcy wouldn’t mean the immediate shutting down of the big 3, but mergers and drastic downsizing.

  • Reply Oscar Thibidoux December 12, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    Over the years I’ve owned both foreign and domestic. Frankly, I’ve enjoyed owning the foreign ones more. However, I still do not want to see the big 3 go away. Hope they improve the quality. Seems like the attitude is that they are doing us a favor.

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