GM makes plea, apology to American public

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GM is promising to change its waysIt is a desperate time for U.S. automakers, who are collectively asking for tens of billions of dollars in bailout money from the government.

The uncertainty of Congress in responding to the industry’s request has led to General Motors making a plea to all Americans – as well as an apology.

In an open letter which ran in trade journal Automotive News, GM describes its situation as being similar to that faced by "all Americans," who have been hit by economic events outside their control.

Rising energy prices, a falling stock market, a troubled housing industry and frozen credit are all cited as factors which exacerbated existing troubles and led to the urgent need for federal funds.

However, GM also admits that it erred and even "disappointed" the American people.

"At times we violated your trust by letting our quality fall below industry standards and our designs become lackluster," the letter states.

The automaker also acknowledges that it had "lost adequate focus on our core U.S. market," produced too many SUVs and trucks and maintained uncompetitive compensation plans.

GM and Chrysler both say they require a loan to avoid bankruptcy, while Ford is requesting a line of credit.
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