The introduction of the Maytag Neptune was the biggest mistake in the history of this industry. It was on the forefront of front-loading, energy-saving technology. It was even marketed properly and was introduced at Radio City in New York.
Only problem was a 60% fail rate. That they didn't address the issue was the real tipping point for consumers depending on their heritage of reliability. Four years later, Maytag ceased to exist as an independent company with thousands of jobs lost in Iowa.
Flash forward 10 years, Bosch has recently announced that they will no longer be in the laundry business.
Unlike Maytag, this is a great machine marketed and distributed poorly. They cited competition from the Korean companies as the reason. Currently, at $549, their machine sells for $100-250 cheaper with much better reliability. The real reason may very well be Bosch's lack of market penetration in box stores, especially Sears. Thus, they cannot derive volume needed to maintain a factory.
So, do you as a consumer knowingly buy a machine which will be discontinued in 2011? Only if it is good and cheap...and right now Bosch is both.