Saturn: Almost FIXED... Next?

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Thread: Saturn: Almost FIXED... Next?

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    Saturn: Almost FIXED... Next?

    Saturn: FIXED... Next?
    April 14, 2006
    By: NSAP
    www.gminsidenews.com



    The recent introduction of the Saturn Sky, Aura, Outlook, Sky Red Line, and Vue Green Line should pretty much give notice to everyone that Saturn is just about revitalized. The whole idea of brand revitalization started in around 2002 with Cadillac; when GM invested several billion into the then damaged division. That exact same thing has happened nearly overnight with Saturn, which direly needed exciting new product. Now one question remains…who’s next?

    In some aspects one could say that GMC will be completely revitalized by 2007. Being that half of the brand’s lineup consist of GMT-900 products; which are of course all new. Not to mention the early-2007 arrival of their new Lambda-based Acadia crossover. That would leave the Envoy as the only product that lacks a recent redesign, which will be happening for the 2008 model-year. While any new product is good, GMC doesn’t exactly need revitalized; at least not as much as other divisions.

    When you think about GM brands that need revitalized the first two that come to mind are Buick and Pontiac. There are a few products out of the two divisions that are doing very well, but as a whole; the neither division is doing well. The problem with Buick is rather simple; they have been blessed with the “old people car” image. GM has GOT to give some perception-changing products to Buick soon if they wish to overcome that. To my surprise the new Lucerne is actually starting to change Buick’s perception, but it’s going to take more than a G-Body based sedan to fully change it. Without a doubt the upcoming Enclave crossover will really start to engage some perception changing at Buick. It’s classy, well-appointed, and stylish. I do wish that GM would have found someway to green-light the beautiful Velite hard-top convertible concept. That car would really be an overnight success for Buick. Unfortunately it seems that the Velite will simply go down in history as a concept car only.

    To be honest, I’m worried about Pontiac. If worse comes to worse at GM (which currently seems debatable) and a division has to be dropped; I think Pontiac would be the one to go. Buick has China to keep them from getting the axe, as it would be suicide for GM to kill Buick when it is their flagship brand in China. Pontiac on the other hand doesn’t have any good business case to justify their existence. The future of Pontiac holds; a new GTO, RWD G8, and eventually a new G6. That’s not a bad group of new product, but the recent announcement of a rebadged Cobalt for the US ruins it all; making me think that Pontiac is still not serious about being a performance brand. If Pontiac wants to survive, they are going to have to be a serious performance division, otherwise Saturn will eat them alive.

    To wrap it up; by looking at proposed future product plans, it looks as if the Pontiac-GMC-Buick lineup is next in line for GM revitalization. This makes sense considering that GM seriously wants the three divisions to be combined, but each catering to a different market niche. Let the revitalization begin.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    I'm thinking that the division known as Buick would be helped by a name change. Buick is still seen as something old people drive. As we all know, perception equals reality.

    Saturn needs a replacement for the Ion though. Get rid of the center guages and suicide doors this time though.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    I agree B-P-GMC needs to be next.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Buick will stay forever. Old folks need comfortable cars to cart them around. That means floaty suspensions and thats a good thing to many of their target customers who have bad backs or kidneys. Combine that with silent cabin, your geriatric ride is like sitting in your favorite couch.

    Oh and old people have more money to burn.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Quote Originally Posted by W.A.F.U.
    Saturn needs a replacement for the Ion though. Get rid of the center guages and suicide doors this time though.
    Ion is a loser. If numbers add up, Opel Astra will be perfect.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Sarturn needs to get rid of the current Ion and bring in Astra under the same name. keep the door though.. they give it brand character

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    I would like to see Buick get into gear(no pun). The Enclave will the the cataylist, if they can re design the LaCrosse to be a more classy looking vehicle they should be on there way. On the Lucerne they should add more chrome and bigger rims, you want to attract a younger crowd make it look over the top.
    Pontiac.................well they seem doomed unless the new cars get some major power. I would like to see a 2 door coupe/ sports car with a big ol' V8. Let's make a economy Vette. Nice styling but not as many bells and wistles that go with the XLR and Vette.
    GMC I love the 900's, but I think GM should start stagering their vehicles. Since GMC is getting the Acadia I think the Envoy should go and Chevy keeps the TB but make it styled more like the Envoy we all love.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    The argument about Buick not being dropped because it is so pivotal in China does not seem like a legitimate argument. Not a single model is shared. I don't understand why Buick could not continue to exist in China if it was axed in NA. I am split on which brand would be better to drop, I have a special place in my heart for both, but if that is the only argument keeping Buick in NA, I don't think there is much hope.
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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Quote Originally Posted by mgescuro
    I agree B-P-GMC needs to be next.
    Well there really isn't "anything" else. Buick needs a few other cars besides the Enclave to help it, I hope the statesmen will. Also maybe a 2 door coupe for Buick is in order.

    The future Pontiacs will hopefully be good (as time goes on we'll get more info). I hope that the G5 is a temporary fix and will be redesigned to not look like a Cobalt when Delta II comes out...
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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Buick is probably done, if this next round of cars does not turn them around, I can see GM killing them off. I dont want them to, but I can see it. Pontiac is next after Buick.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Pontiac should be next. For crying out loud, the "excitement" division is rebadging cars from other divisions!
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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Saturn: FIXED... Next?
    This is an extremely premature statement. The products look like they're real contenders, but basically the first one isn't even sold yet, and people are already declaring a victory?! That concerns me deeply.

    Yes, Buick needs even more help, a fact exemplified by the fact that some of the $3 billion or so in revitalization cash hasn't brought us much in the way of class-leading products thus far.

    Saturn-or any GM division-should never be deemed "fixed." It will lull GM into complacency again in a few short years, and GM will be facing the pressing need to revitalize Saturn... again.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Quote Originally Posted by nsap
    Saturn: FIXED... Next?
    April 14, 2006
    By: NSAP
    www.gminsidenews.com



    but the recent announcement of a rebadged Cobalt for the US ruins it all; making me think that Pontiac is still not serious about being a performance brand.

    I agree with alot of what you said. However, the G5 while not perfect is not exactly going to be the ruination of Pontiac. It may actually help a few dealers stay afloat.

    Nevertheless, I do agree that It would be nicer to have a Pontiac exclusive small car.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    Quote Originally Posted by tgagneguam
    This is an extremely premature statement. The products look like they're real contenders, but basically the first one isn't even sold yet, and people are already declaring a victory?! That concerns me deeply.

    Yes, Buick needs even more help, a fact exemplified by the fact that some of the $3 billion or so in revitalization cash hasn't brought us much in the way of class-leading products thus far.

    Saturn-or any GM division-should never be deemed "fixed." It will lull GM into complacency again in a few short years, and GM will be facing the pressing need to revitalize Saturn... again.
    You're taking a title too seriously. By no means is Saturn fully fixed, but their revitalization is well under way.

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    Re: Saturn: FIXED... Next?

    I wouldn't speak of a complete Saturn revitalization until the Astra arrives.
    Buick should stay the old-folks car. What do American's have against the aged? Nothing wrong with being old, it'll happen to us all. They too need cars, their numbers are increasing not decreasing, they have the money, and they make for satisfied customers. The worse GM could do is try to make Buick yet another euro-inspired youth-oriented brand in direct competition with...well... all the other GM brands. Please GM, let Buick be the classic American brand with comfortable well-equipped cars. Change the front of the LaCrosse to look more distinct, introduce the Ulta; bring the whatever crossover.
    Pontiac, on the other hand is in the one that is in serious trouble. The G6 and GP need restyling to reflect some sportiness.
    I have no problem with a Cobalt-based small car, if it only didn't look exactly the same as the Cobalt! Can't they give it a different front? How about some pop-up lights, something, anthing.
    I'd like to see Pontiac be the only brand that gets upercharged/turbocharged engines. Drop the Saturn Red Lines, drop the Chevy SSs (too late for that probably) and give Pontiac alone a turbo Solstice, a turbo G5, a turbo Torrent. Vibe? Get rid of it or give it to Buick. Pontiac should be the first to get a future RWD sports sedan. I don't know what the deal is with the on/off again GTO/Firebird. As long as it looks good and not like some 80s Opel.

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