While speculations and rumors of such a merger have continually floated around the Internet like balls in an old bottle of Orbitz, Barra’s comments seem to (hopefully) finally put the endless swirl to rest.
“We’re not going to entertain anything that distracts us,” Barra said to an analyst on the consolidation, in reference to GM’s short-term and long-term goals.
While FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne has no doubt fueled the fire by repeatedly stating that auto consolidation is necessary–and that he’s open to a merger with GM or Ford Motor Company – both GM and Ford have publicly rebuffed his off-hand courtship.
“We laid out a very comprehensive plan that takes us through the early next decade, with milestones next year and beyond,” The Detroit News quoted Barra as saying. “As we’ve communicated, we think there’s tremendous opportunity for us within the business as we look at efficiency measures, as we look at truly achieving the scale that we should have because we’re already in that top tier of the auto industry, among the largest OEMs,”
Barra said there may be a need for other OEMs to band together, as they may need more capital over the next decade to develop new technologies. But she said GM has already made significant technology investments, which includes a lead in the deployment of 4G LTE in-car technologies.
As for Ford?
“We’ve very happy with where we are,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford President of the Americas. “We’re not looking for a partner. We’ve spent the last eight years or so consolidating Ford as one company. We all recognize the value and need for scale … we believe we’re big enough to do that with our volume as is.”