I love my bike and am contemplating trading up to an even better bike next year (but I probably won’t — I have an attachment to my bike like it’s a third leg now). So as someone who is actively trying to figure out if I can live without a car, even in an un-transit friendly city like Indy (bike lanes are growing fast here, though), this irks me:
The marketing geniuses at General Motors launched this campaign this week. It’s aimed at convincing college kids already paying exorbitant tuition and living well beyond their means that they can go another $20k in debt and somehow pay the monthly insurance on a sweet new car. You’ll recognize the humiliated cyclist riding an uncool bike from the 80s and a similarly dull helmet because that’s you and me a few years back.
However, the folks at Giant, the makers of my bike, have a nimble ad department of their own.
Justin’s Plan to Fix Ford, GM and Chrysler: The U.S. Government and any willing state government should immediately update their ENTIRE fleet of vehicles over the next three years. Purchase hybrid or electric GM, Ford and Chrysler vehicles.
Since the government will require the vehicles to be hybrid or electric, the government should offer to help re-tool plants to mass produce hybrid or electric vehicles by offering low-interest loans or grants.
The vehicles being replaced can be sold and donated to low or no-income citizens, organizations or qualifying small businesses.
The end result? The auto makers get a guaranteed contract over the next three years worth untold millions, capable of keeping people at work and keeping The Big Three in business with re-tooled plants to compete better in the future. Not to mention, more folks in America will be able to qualify for newer-model vehicles they wouldn’t ordinarily be able to afford, possibly reducing maintenance costs and getting more older vehicles off the road. That saves gas for the rest of us if older models aren’t guzzling up the gas supply.