The automotive community was in shock today after a well-known and well-respected journalist let it be known that he does not like diesel-powered cars.
“I’ve never cared for them, really,” said Jimmy “Jim” Hammer-James, a former syndicated automotive columnist for Knight-Rider News, who asked that he not be named for fear of reprisals.
“There’s nothing inherently wrong with diesels,” Hammer-James the journalist told Autoblopnik. “I just don’t like them, and I don’t understand why my colleagues get so excited about them. Sure, they get great fuel economy if you drive five miles per hour under the speed limit on level ground in a perfectly straight line with the A/C off and the sunroof closed, but they’re noisy and the fuel sticks to your shoes and stinks up your car. When my readers tell me they need a car that gets great gas mileage, I tell them to buy a Prius.”
“This creates a serious credibility problem for our industry,” said Berton Bertonsmyth, president of Consolidated Reporters and Automotive Professionals, a trade group for auto writers. “An automotive reporter who doesn’t like diesels is like… is like…”
“Like a germaphobe who doesn’t like soap,” finished his colleague Bill Fannybatter, president of Consolidated Reporters for Awesomely Slick Similes.
Hammer-James the unnamed journalist says he’s surprised at the vitriol he’s received from his colleagues after voicing his opinions on diesels.
“It’s like there’s some sort of unwritten code,” he said. “If you don’t love diesels, you’re not a real auto critic. People say I must hate cars, or I must not be an enthusiast. I’ve owned three BMWs, I’ve got a showroom-condition ’64 GTO, and I’m helping a friend restore his Jaguar E-Type. I love cars. I just don’t like diesels.”
“He’s worse than a mommyblogger,” said Warry Lebster of Toad and Rrack, who asked that we change his name and his publication in order to ensure his anonymity. “He’s worse than a lifestyle journalist. He’s not one of us.”
UPDATE: Autoblopnik has learned that Hammer-James the subject of this story is unhurt after a failed attack by fellow journalists, who doused him with diesel fuel and attempted to set him alight before realizing that diesel fuel does not burn readily.
General Motors today confirmed to Autoblopnik that it intends to partner with French automaker PSA to sell Peugeot-Citroen vans in North America.
“We think there are a lot of synergies between American and French automakers,” said GM VP of Vans Stefan LeGirsky, adjusting his beret. “Working with the French is an idea whose time has come, and frankly we’re surprised that no American motor company has thought of it before.”
Thom LeWilkenson, spokesvanner for Chevrolet’s truck division, said the collaboration “makes perfect sense from an engineering standpoint.”
“The French have a knack for styling and design,” LeWilkenson said as he sipped his café au lait and took a deep drag on a Galoise, “while General Motors has a proven track record of building durable commercial vehicles. Not that it matters, because we’re just going to import a bunch of vans and slap GMC and Chevrolet badges on them, but…” He then shrugged rather indifferently.
LeWilkenson added that a product name had not been finalized, but they were considering something that would emphasize the van’s Frenchness, perhaps an Anglicized version of the French term for “the van”.
“Of course, there is no historical precedent for a partnership with the French,” said GM CEO Danoit LeAkersoneaux, who arrived fashionably late to our interview accompanied by a tall, slender Italian woman who was not his wife, “but I’m sure it will be a great alliance for both General Motors and PSA. After our initial run of véhicules commerciaux, we may introduce a second vehicle, which I suppose you could call an encore. After that, well, who knows? La ciel est la limite.”