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Corvette Today Podcast With Kai Spande BGA Manager

On this episode of CORVETTE TODAY, you get to meet the Corvette Plant Manager for the Bowling Green Assembly Plant, Kai Spande!
Your host, Steve Garrett, introduces you to Kai as he traces his career with GM. Kai talks about how the Bowling Green Assembly Plant transitioned from the front engine, C7 Corvette, to the mid-engine C8 Corvette. You'll get insights on the plant expansion and how they made that all the new C8 Corvette a true state-of-the-art build facility. Kai also tells you about the Corvettes he has owned and the funny story of how he loved Corvettes, but never thought he'd get to work for it during his tenure at GM. Get to personally know Corvette Plant Manager, Kai Spande, on this episode of CORVETTE TODAY!

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NAIAS Has Doom & Gloom Atmosphere

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  • NAIAS Has Doom & Gloom Atmosphere

    At one point in my life, flying across country to go to the Detroit show was a given, especially for a new Corvette’s reveal. But, not only no Corvette, but the tone of this review article of today’s NAIAS show opening, what all I say is that I am glad I spent neither time nor money going this time around.

    Many Major OEM did not even choose to show. Others like GM chose to reveal a couple of Cadillacs, but passed on even having a press conference.

    Looks like the early June, 2020 NAIAS is time for a massive re-boot. I truly hope NAIAS returns to its earlier glory then. Maybe we will see the reveal of the C8 Z06 there — and if so, I would gladly return.

    Originally posted by AutoNews
    No warm memories from Detroit's final winter auto show

    Nick Bunkley is a news editor who oversees coverage of Ford, Toyota and Volkswagen and coordinates in-depth projects for Automotive News.


    A Mustang Shelby GT500 is lowered into the Ford stand during press previews Monday at the 2019 Detroit auto show.

    Press days at the Detroit auto show used to be a three-day avalanche of news, elaborate stunts (no one will ever forget Chrysler driving 120 head of cattle through the streets to promote a new pickup) and celebrity cameos. One year, General Motors even kicked things off the night before with an star-studded runway fashion show hosted by Jimmy Kimmel.

    This year, the last for the show in its current form before it becomes an indoor/outdoor summer event for 2020, everything was pretty much winding down by lunchtime on the very first day. The biggest "celebrities" were Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess and Toyota Motor Corp. CEO Akio Toyoda, who made surprise appearances.

    And whereas securing a coveted spot on the main show floor was a huge milestone for upstart automakers and suppliers in the past, a large swath of it this week is devoted to a test track for the Kia Telluride, a generously spaced food court like you might find at an insurance-broker convention and rows of rally cars parked on bare carpet.

    Show organizers have the departures of BMW, Mercedes and Audi — on top of the handful of other brands that stopped showing up in the last few years — to thank for leaving them with so much extra real estate, not long after they had begged the city to finally expand and renovate its convention center.

    If anyone hadn't gotten on board with the notion that this show needs a reboot, stat, the conspicuous lack of energy here Monday left no doubt. It certainly didn't help that a major water main break over the weekend put most of downtown Detroit under a boil-water advisory, rendering drinking fountains unusable and forcing many of the visiting media to start their day with low-pressure, cold showers.

    There were murmurs and applause for a few vehicle introductions, including the Toyota Supra and when Ford Motor Co. lowered a Shelby Mustang Shelby GT500 from the ceiling as if by helicopter.

    But most of the 25-minute reveals were hardly memorable, nor are many of the vehicles themselves. VW's freshened Passat was brought out almost as an afterthought to news that the company would be adding a second plant and 1,000 jobs building electric vehicles in Chattanooga. Infiniti's QX Inspiration concept failed to even show up on stage when it was supposed to.

    The biggest news to come out of the 2019 show is likely to happen Tuesday, when Ford and Volkswagen are slated to announce a transcontinental partnership. But they're doing so via conference call, deciding against using a time slot they had reserved on the convention-hall stage.

    I'm still skeptical that the move to June in 2020 will fundamentally fix what's broken about the show — and I think public attendance, which is still fairly healthy, may suffer as families elect not to spend the first week of their kids' summer break at an auto show — but at least it's something. Everyone will leave this year's event knowing that something new is on the horizon, rather than just muttering about how they don't need to waste their time even coming next time.

    Ford's executive chairman, Bill Ford, thinks the date change will provide a much-needed spark.

    "I always thought it made sense for Detroit to showcase itself when the weather's nice. All the international press comes here in perhaps our worst weather month of the year," Ford said Monday. "I don't know how many rodeos we can have coming down the street in January."

    The problem, though, isn't really the weather (which cooperated this year more than usual, with not even a trace of snow anywhere).

    It's what's inside the show — or more precisely, as this year's show makes clear, what isn't here anymore. Let's hope some of that comes back in 2020 and beyond, before the whole event just becomes one big food court.

    GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.