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Ok article, I agree with the over all message of staying on target with Solstice and not pricing it out of reach. I'm not so sure about all this talk of the roadster market being down, or drying up.*Here are his numbers:

***** Six months 2004**2003

Chevy Corvette***** 18,388* 16,946*

Nissan 350Z********** 16,839* 19,503

BMW Z4***************** 7359** 9869

Chrysler Crossfire***** 7636*** 275

Ford T'Bird***************7072** 9877

Mercedes SL*************7019** 5732

Chevy SSR*************** 5442*** 0

Mazda Miata************ 5266** 5721

Lexus SC430*********** 4887** 5206

Porsche 911************* 4808** 4748

Honda S2000*********** 4238** 4295

Audi TT******************** 2954** 4094

Porsche Boxster******** 2307** 3467

Mercedes SLK********* 2118** 3173

Cadillac XLR************ 1910**** 0

Toyota MR2************* 1702** 1615

From this I see that some are actually up (Toyota should rejoice!). Some are brand new designs and must be taken into perspective, like how many potential TT buyers bought a Crossfire instead? How many chose an SSR over a T-bird? An XLR over an SLK? Most of the older designs are only modestly off, and to those that are significantly down, they probably deserve it. I think from these numbers alone we can see that the roadster market is far from dead, it's just more competitive now. All I can say is, Mazda watch out! Your slice of the market will soon have a serious contender!
:devil
 

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Using the cars in that list is rather misleading, because they are not all roadsters. Many fixed rough sports cars buyers won't consider a roadster, and many roadster buyers will not consider a fixed roof coupe. So even though we are looking at the sports car market, there are two different niches, maybe more, in that list.

Besides, that list would debunk the fact the market is shrinking. Adding up the totals, 2004 sales are 99,945 amd 2003 sales are 94,521.00, which represents a 5.4% increase!

There could be reasons for this too. Corvette sales are up, and that may not be a coincidence. With the C6 due this fall, Chevy has had great financing and rebate deals on Corvettes that are rarely if ever seen. So a lot of people have taken advantage. Corvette forum dealers have been offering nearly $10K off sticker on Corvettes with the rebates (depending on that sticker price).

Lets look at just the roadsters on that list (minus cars that offer roadster and coupe versions). Also, I am not including the SSR or the T-Bird as I think they represent a slightly different niche than the sports car roadster.

BMW Z4 7359 from 9869 minus 2510
Merc SLK 2118 from 3173 minus 1055
P Boxster 2307 from 3467 minus 1160
S2000 4238 from 4295 minus 57

Total, these four are down 4782 units. (22.9%)

Those are the $30K plus. All are down. Maybe buyers are migrating elsewhere with other interesting iron available, or maybe they are down because all but the Z4 are now many years old. This could also be a result of the continued lagging economy. Either way, this is not the Solstices market, and I do not think GM should worry that the high buck roadsters are down.

Miata 5266 from 5721 minus 455
NR2 1702 from 1615 up 87

Total down 368 units (5.0%)

This is the Solstice market, but again I would not worry too much. I am a little surprised the Miata is down with the new Mazdaspeed now available. However, like the group above, the Miata is long in the tooth and we know a total ground up redesign is due within the next couple years. So potential Miata buyers may just be waiting to see what the next Miata will be like. I bet there is a contingent waiting to see the Solstice too. Besides, this end of the market is down a lot less than the higher end.

With the Solstice's expected sales volume, it is essentially going to be creating its own market. So sales of current roadsters, even those in its price range, may simply be irrelevant. When your plan is to sell twice as many cars as your similar priced competitors combined (Miata and MR2) you must be targeting buyers that are not currently driving roadsters.

GM should be more concerned about getting enough buyers year in and year out for the car (especially 5 years down the road) but shouldn't worry itself too much on what the market is doing right now!
 

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Drove the MazdaSpeed - not so surprising that it hasn't boosted sales of the Miata.

It was highly underwhelming, with a very short working band (turbo seems to kick in just before rev limited) and my estimate just barely under 7 seconds 0-60... :sleep
 

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Discussion Starter #6
naoki said:
Anyone else notice that this article said the solstice was due next spring?
I've been seeing that a lot lately in articles. Hard to tell if they mean production starts in the spring or delivery in spring.
 

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naoki said:
Anyone else notice that this article said the solstice was due next spring?
I caught that too and would love to see it. But I'll believe it when they are on dealer lots. GM has been consistent in saying next fall, adn they have made a point of stating that they will take their time with this one to get it right. So I am tending to take them at there word. Still, I would love to see it next spring!

:party
 

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Fformula88 said:
I caught that too and would love to see it. But I'll believe it when they are on dealer lots. GM has been consistent in saying next fall, adn they have made a point of stating that they will take their time with this one to get it right. So I am tending to take them at there word. Still, I would love to see it next spring!

:party
Just like Scotty (from the original "Star Trek" series) said in one of his guest appearances on "Star Trek: The Next Generation", "If it's going to take you 3 hours, don't tell them it'll take you 3 hours. Tell them it will take you 9 hours and when they say they need it in 6 you'll look like a hero when you do it in 3." (Paraphrased, but you get the idea.) I believe that GM will continue to say a fall release so that they get really good publicity when they release the production version ahead of schedule.
 

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:cheers

Simmonsmb,

Now you're catching on... under-promise, over-deliver.

Unlike the ION (they switched the over and under part...).

It's better news and lower risk to promise an autumn delivery date, then come out in spring "ahead of schedule" or even summer "ahead of schedule", vs. promising spring - run into an expected delay - then have to back track to summer and see it slip to autumn...

Option 1: plan to deliver ahead of official promise dates, have timing slip and still deliver "on time",

Option 2: plan to deliver at exactly the promise date, and take all the nasty press for having the car come out way late - late enough for the buzz to wear and people to go buy another car...

I know what my plan would be if I were GM... Option 2 seems like the SSR - delivery timing for the truck seemed to be very wishy-washy or vague. They even had orders that were supposedly delivered but "not delivered", startup delays... I think I first saw one at a dealer in the autumn of the year they were supposed to come out in spring-summer.
 

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Simon, Scotty was a very wise man, and he was right! Hopefully that was GM's plan.


solsticeman said:
:cheers

Simmonsmb,

Now you're catching on... under-promise, over-deliver.

Unlike the ION (they switched the over and under part...).

It's better news and lower risk to promise an autumn delivery date, then come out in spring "ahead of schedule" or even summer "ahead of schedule", vs. promising spring - run into an expected delay - then have to back track to summer and see it slip to autumn...

Option 1: plan to deliver ahead of official promise dates, have timing slip and still deliver "on time",

Option 2: plan to deliver at exactly the promise date, and take all the nasty press for having the car come out way late - late enough for the buzz to wear and people to go buy another car...

I know what my plan would be if I were GM... Option 2 seems like the SSR - delivery timing for the truck seemed to be very wishy-washy or vague. They even had orders that were supposedly delivered but "not delivered", startup delays... I think I first saw one at a dealer in the autumn of the year they were supposed to come out in spring-summer.
Lets just hope the Solstice will follow through with an earlier than expected release date, and not be another Ion, SSR, etc.
 

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Now you're catching on... under-promise, over-deliver.
Hope they do that with the promised 170hp and 2900# min weight! A few more hp and a little less poundage would always be appreciated. And if they could bring the base price in under $19,500, there'd be parades in the streets! :party
 

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DreamerDave said:
Hope they do that with the promised 170hp and 2900# min weight! A few more hp and a little less poundage would always be appreciated. And if they could bring the base price in under $19,500, there'd be parades in the streets! :party
While we are wishing... :D

Have the Solstice show up on dealer lots May 1, 2005. The base car, priced at $19,995 with destination will have the 205 HP S/C Ecotec out of the Ion Redline/Cobalt SS. They also arrive to the party at the same time with their up level engine, the 240 HP 2.4L S/C! Its a $1500 stand alone option, letting anyone who wants to fly do so for $21495! :D

Ok, now were starting to really dream, but it would be nice! :party
 

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mmmmm that's one tasty dream.

I'll take one of those please :D

We can also dream that the 170HP 2.4L is under-rated like the 2.0L Supercharged version. I mean really, only 205HP offically from 12.5 PSI of boost? If that's all they were making off that much boost I'd have to question if there were some parts put on upside down, or if they have a very large ' I guess this is an extra part' bin.
 

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Airlines do it all of the time - it is 450 miles from Atlanta to Orlando yet the scheduled flying time is an hour and a half. Plane isn't that slow, they usually get in about 20 minutes early but keeps the "on-time" in the 90 percentile.

Not really an "under promise" so much as a lot of "Murphy" estimates.

Since the April-June period is the best for graduation, weddings, and "we made it through the winter" impulse buying, that (or a touch earlier) is the ideal time for a new intro.
 

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Well with the death of the MR2 as of the 2005 MY version, that leaves the Miata as the only sub $25k roadster on the market. Until we see a flood of Kappa based roadsters hit the market.

Problem is, I think this original article was written with some inside info of the MR2 coming to and end. Don't know how this new info bodes for the roadster market.
 

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Losing the MR2 is not a big impact on the market anyway. As those figures show, it does not sell in very large volumes. I am surprised that Toyota is killing it, because they never expected to sell it in big numbers. I tried to look at them the first year they were introduced, and every one of them was spoken for before they were delivered. I think they only planned to import 2000 the first year, and only expected to sell a modest number more a year after that. I hate to see any sports car leave the market, but it only clears the way for that many more Solstice sales. Good bye MR2 :seeya
 

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brentil said:
Well with the death of the MR2 as of the 2005 MY version, that leaves the Miata as the only sub $25k roadster on the market. Until we see a flood of Kappa based roadsters hit the market.

Problem is, I think this original article was written with some inside info of the MR2 coming to and end. Don't know how this new info bodes for the roadster market.
I don't think anyone will notice the MR2's passing, and once the Solstice comes out, I doubt anyone will even remember it! :D
 

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AeroDave said:
I don't think anyone will notice the MR2's passing, and once the Solstice comes out, I doubt anyone will even remember it! :D
Very true, but that still 2000 people per year in the USA who now need to find another low priced Roadster to appease them. But now with the list of choices knocked down to just one car till the Solstice, they're more then likely to turn to the dark SUV side. :nono
 

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brentil said:
Very true, but that still 2000 people per year in the USA who now need to find another low priced Roadster to appease them. But now with the list of choices knocked down to just one car till the Solstice, they're more then likely to turn to the dark SUV side. :nono
I doubt anyone who was planning on buying the MR2 will just get a big old SUV instead. The MR2 is the antithesis of utility with its total lack of any extra storage room.

Also don't forget they are officially cancelling the MR2 after the 2005 model year, not immediately. So I would assume it will be available into next summer and will leave the market just as the Solstice is arriving. So those buyers won't have to hop into Hummer H2's just yet! :lol
 

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True, very true. The 2005 MY will be the last produced, and will be onsale till they're all sold.
 
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