Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Jumpstart Ford Startles Waggoner, Escorted Out

Bloomberg News reports: "At the conclusion of Wagoner's speech today, two activists with the environmental group Jumpstart Ford, which lobbies automakers to boost fuel-efficiency, surprised the chief executive on stage by asking him to sign a pledge committing GM to become the most fuel-efficient automaker by 2010. Wagoner declined, saying ``I'll let my speech speak for me.'' The two men were escorted out of the hall..."

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GM's CEO Waggoner Announces Saturn Plug-in Hybrid; Bio-fuel Hummer

LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) -- General Motors Corp. (GM) Chief Executive Rick Wagoner said Wednesday that the U.S. needs to reduce dependence on foreign energy and insisted the No. 1 auto maker is accelerating its efforts to meet the challenge by being the first to offer a plug-in hybrid and by expanding its production of biofuel vehicles.
Wagoner said GM is using the Saturn Vue hybrid sport utility vehicle to develop a plug-in hybrid, which can be re-charged from a standard electrical outlet, and will offer biofuel-capable Hummer SUVs. He said "energy and environmental leadership" is a key part of GM's ongoing turnaround plan.
He didn't give a time frame for the plug-in, but said it will take "several years" to bring one to market. Wagoner said GM's prior work on its now-defunct EV1 electric car gives it a good base for the battery technology needed.

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