Detroits disadvanatage when it comes to labor costs (legacy or otherwise) is not really the cause of their predicament, but a symptom. The bargaining pattern was set during a period in which the Big Three faced little competition. They could overpay production workers, add unnecessary salaried workers, and design cars without regard for or, perhaps more accurately, no incentive to push for improvements. To the contrary, when I was a kid, the Big Three were accused of planned obsolescence, i.e., they made cars that wouldn't last too long.
They have struggled against that, but have not done enough and are burdened about a generation of ill will. I am 52. I have purchased the following new cars in my adult life: Honda Civic, Volkwagen Jetta, Audi 4000, Volvo, Mitsubishi Eclipse, Mercedes C class, BMW 500, Mini and Mini S. (My wife does drive a Jeep Liberty). My sense is that American cars just aren't very good. I could be wrong but the Big Three earned that reputation and it can't be overcome by a bridge loan that leaves their substantial remaining sclerosis intact or an emphasis on "green" cars.