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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, I've been a car enthusiast my whole life. One of my favorite things about the subject is alternate history and industry reconstruction. As a car guy growing up and working with many cars in my life, I often like to think how I'd do things differently. So here's my GM and what I would have done if I were supreme overlord for its 100+ year history.

-Chevrolet: volume models, trucks, direct competition with Toyota or Volkswagen
-Pontiac: niche performance, maybe a unique cross between Mazda and Dodge cars
-Oldsmobile: Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Lexus
-Buick: sports cars, maybe a Porsche/low-end Ferrari
-Cadillac: Bentley, Rolls-Royce
-GMC: leave Chevrolet to pickups and SUVs, this can be GM's Class 6-8 business

So guys, I'm curious to hear your alternate histories or GM lineups. Nobody is wrong; let's not be trolls. Everyone is entitled to their own thoughts and opinions. Also, I know this is a GM site, but feel free to offer up lineups for Ford or Chrysler. Dodge is a tricky brand and I don't even know sometimes how I'd handle it! Have at it!
 

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I will take a "crack at it"
I am going from the GM re org / BK era of 2005 +

CHEVY - stay where it is but uses ZETA for the Impala NO trucks OVER 1 TONNER

Buick - becomes more of a BMW like brand centred around ALPHA and ZETA chassis cars WITH OPEL /VX-R products to "fill in the bottom" IE Astra / ADAM line up of Buick ADAM / ASTRA / Varano-ATS / REGAL-CTS/ park ave ZETA based

EDIT I think the "VX-R" Opals should be a Pontiac over the Buick as I envision Pontiac a better "home" for hot hatchery over Buick NOT saying NO to GS/GNX Buicks but they would be more "reserved" VS Pontiac could pull off "wings and wheels" better

CADDY - moves upmarket and spends its time "pushing" tech and exclusive "experiences" - move to a part bespoke model think Omega and "VOLTEC" across the board

GMC - detached from Buick and becomes a "commercial" brother to CHEVY
HUMMER - officially dies but the "DNA" lives in GMC and LOOSES its "bling" for ACTUAL capability GMC trucks start @ 3/4 TUNNER and go up from there - totally avoiding the "car" class and its CAFE rating except for a few off road SUVS

SATURN - rebooted into the ECO-TECH brand think BMW "i" OR Toyota's rumoured "PRIUS" brand focused on EV and VOLTEC cars (NOT exclusive but the "show" brand for the electrification)

Pontiac the "anti--saturn" / 3RD brand for Buick showrooms Alpha/Zeta based cars - similar to Buick but more "raw" and sporty but also lower priced and with LESS tech / LUX features and more BOLD styling - the soul of muscle cars

OPEL and Buick become "sisters"

Holden stays separate but shares floor space with Opals for there "smaller" offerings with there "stars" being an Alpha Torana and ZETA Commie
 

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I've created a complete alternate history from 1982 to the present. It's quite protracted. I may get into the history later, but for the time being, this is what GM evolved into:

Chevrolet: full global lineup, from Indian minicompact to big yankee Silverado. Sold EVERYWHERE, even the antipodes (Aussies... just shut up.)

Opel: full global lineup much like Chevrolet's, but more "European" in theme, opposed to Chevrolet's "Trans-Pacific" feel. There are notable differences not only in theme, but product placement, marketing, pricing, etc. Actually, Opel and Holden operate as a single unit, with the Europeans doing the small cars and Holden the larger ones and the specialty models. The same lineup is sold throughout the world, though obviously not all markets get all models. So it's Opel in Europe, South Africa, and Latin America; Holden in Oceania and Indonesia; Daewoo in China, India, and most of Asia; Vauxhall in the U.K.; and Pontiac in North America and Mexico.

GMC: bifurcated product line aimed straight at Jeep, with a "GMC Professional" lineup of global vans that gives the Ford Transit a fit in the market! Extensive lineup of SUVs and pickups, ranging from a Renegade competitor straight up to the Sierra Denali. The products are sold worldwide, with brand name depending on where you live, Isuzu in South Africa and Thailand, GMC in Europe and Arabia, etc.

Saturn: forget Saturn as we knew it. This is a demi-luxe brand launched by Oldsmobile in 1990 and replacing it by decade's end. Lineup ranges from Euro urban runabouts up to large family crossovers.

Buick: begins moving upscale in the 1990s. Currently has an extensive lineup of luxury sedans and crossovers.

Cadillac: gets serious in the 1990s. Today, sells at the upper end of the regular luxury segment. In other words, not the Bentley-Rolls competitor many think it should be, but selling above the average BMW and Benz.

Lotus: GM never lets go of Lotus, but leaves it alone until the 2000s, when Lotus morphs into GM's Porsche. (See 2010 Paris Auto Show lineup).

Saab: never part of GM.

Suzuki: GM and Suzuki amicably part company in the late 1990s, but collaborate on small-car platform. GM buys Suzuki's share of CAMI.

Subaru: GM buys 20% share in the late 1990s, leading to a few interesting Subaru-based Saturn products, but this dissolves when GM sells its stake to Toyota.

Isuzu: under full GM control from 1999. Most GMC product are sold as Isuzus worldwide, but in North America, it becomes solely a purveyor of vans and commercial vehicles from 2011.

Hummer: sold through Isuzu dealers with expanded lineup intended to replace specific Isuzu models. Discontinued for 2011.
 

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Holden-developed models:

"Torana" = Cruze-sized RWD sedan. aka Pontiac "Tempest"...
"Solstice" = 2+2, GT, and roadster. aka Opel "GT" / Pontiac "Solstice"...
"Commodore" = RWD Altima/Mazda6-sized sedan and sportwagon. aka Opel "Nubira" / Pontiac "Grand Prix" ...
"Senator" = Kia Quoris-like large sports sedan with attractive pricing. aka Opel "Senator" / Pontiac "Bonneville" ...
"Monaro" = Commodore-sized 2+2; more Genesis Coupe than Camaro. aka Opel "Calibra" / Pontiac "Trans Am" ...
"Bravada" = FWD CUV à la Nissan Murano. aka Opel / Pontiac "Bravada" ...
What if Holden continued to sell it's own brand in south east Asia and also moved into south Africa

By now it would be the Oceana arm of GM
 

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What if Holden continued to sell it's own brand in south east Asia and also moved into south Africa

By now it would be the Oceana arm of GM
Opel is a much stronger brand name than Holden in South Africa. It's feasible that both names could be sold in any single market, but I reckoned it was more prudent to simply consolidate. I'm not sure which brand customers in places like Malaysia or the Philippines would prefer, but Holden's long and successful history in Indonesia (and to a lesser extent, Thailand) suggests that it would be the wise choice for that market.
 

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Probably close to t-rex.

Chevrolet: full global lineup

Opel/Vauxhall/Holden/Buick: semi-premium brand family, operates as a single unit with the exception being that Holden has more crossover with Chevrolet (which isn't sold in Australia) and has more "entry-level" models to fill in the Chevy gap.

GMC: Jeep/LR + commercial vehicles, heavy industrial theme, capitalized on the SUV craze of the ~90s-00s and pushed way up market with luxury trucks.

Cadillac: Mercedes, but not boring; lineup extends beyond the normal "S-Class" flagship to the Maybach, with a flagship coupe more like a higher performance, American Vanquish. Somewhere between Mercedes and Maserati. Fewer models than Mercedes, more than Maserati.

Corvette: spun out of Chevrolet a looong ago, more of an Alfa/Porsche competitor with a distinct difference being affordability on the low end with the option to price much higher as well as a "practicality" like the current Corvette has.

Saturn never existed. Pontiac was rolled into Chevrolet a long time ago. Oldsmobile was rolled into Chevrolet and OVHB.
 

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I worked forever on a Corvette brand, but no matter how I sliced it, I just couldn't divorce it from Chevrolet. Sometimes ya just gotta go with your heart and not your head. Besides, Lotus works MUCH better as a Porsche competitor. Tried to save Oldsmobile. Wasn't gonna happen.

I don't have any "pie in the sky" stuff, just rational, intelligent evolutions of the cars GM was making in the late 70s and early 80s. Honda's and Toyota's successes, I believe, were in great part of their "evolution, not revolution" approach. I took some liberty with timelines, but nothing out of the realm of feasibility. I mean, would the Buick Rendezvous REALLY have been some mind-boggling futuristic idea in 1996? No. There's some overlap, of course, but I've always contended that was to GM's advantage to have more than one model in certain segments. I tried to avoid unneccessary renaming of models, but sometimes I just REALLY wanted to use a certain name on a certain product (like Saturn's "Avalanche" pickup!). Some names, like Beretta, were just too good to throw away and CONVENIENTLY worked into my Opel = Pontiac scheme, with Opel's "ends-with-an-a" naming convention!
 

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for me HOLDEN is the tough one to "attach" to another brand as they NEED utilities from CHEVY and OPAL compacts fare better then CHEVY (KOREAN) compacts but I envision the COMMIE line up a Pontiac/CHEVY and definitely NOT BUICK/OPAL

a change the OPAL VX-R's become Pontiac's NOT Buick's and then HOLDEN and PONTIAC can SHARE a LOT of "DNA"

I wanted to NOT "wound" any of the dealer structures so I picture
CHEVY and GMC in the same show room with some GMC showrooms in the industrial / transport regions with KenWorth dealers ETC

Buick/saturn/Pontiac would do a 3 way showroom but the 3 put together covers the NICHES out there + lower 1/2 of the LUX market

CADDY cleaved off to be "standalone" OR through LUXARY multi brand dealers
 

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So guys, I'm curious to hear your alternate histories or GM lineups.
Seems this is your 1st (& so far only?) post here on GMI ... so welcome! Sounds like a great alternate lineup you have there.

In case you're interested, GMI used to have a "Revitalization" series ... basically dream lineups. Here is a link to a list of different threads for you to check out when you have some time. Good stuff:
http://www.gminsidenews.com/forums/...sidenews.com/index.php&ref=&ss=2912j697918j24


Cort > www.oldcarsstronghearts.com
pigValve.paceMaker.cowValve | 1979 Caprice Classic (needs new owner)
"Time is a natural healer" __ John Conlee __ 'Years After You'
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks! Yes, I have been on here before but decided to join for this reason alone! I love the idea of dream lineups an playing CEO (perhaps too much free time?!) But anyways, thanks for the pointer!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm impressed to see so many amazing lineups on my post! Thanks guys! I even love that a lot included their overseas brands which I failed to do! But seeing that you guys specified models and brands on a global scale! I would personally incorporate the European models into my lineup and hopefully phase the models out in favor of pushing the core brands global. (i.e. Chevrolet would replace Opel and Vauxhall overseas) and not to start fights, but I am biased to European design over Japanese, so my GM would be very European influenced. Actually, my entire lineup was modeled after VW Group, with Chevy being VW, (Pontiac doesn't have a VW counterpart, but they would be sold via Chevy dealerships), Oldsmobile being Audi, Buick being Porsche, Cadillac being Bentley, and GMC being MAN or Scania.

As sacrilegious as this is on a GM site, any ideas for Dodge? Its like Pontiac, but with trucks too, so it is a weird situation. Jeep is great for a range of budget to Land Rover-like 4X4s and Chrysler can get it together and be a BMW if they wanted.
 

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I will go a step further. What if, all 5 lines competed against each other, as it was in the 60's, when Olds was just as big of a competitor to Buick as Merc was?

Rather than the Cookie Cutter approach. I mean did Buick really need a Mini Van/SUV in the 90's?

What if Olds stayed Olds in 97-98, rather than going after BMW and the likes? Sure some customer migrated to Buick/Caddy, but many just left/ And affluent customers.

What if GM and Ford didn't go on their spending spree of the 90's and just focused on the core vehicles?

What if GMAC never got into the Mortgage/Insurance market?

What if Ford bought Lee Iacocca's pitch before he left to Chrysler?
 

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I don't know what to make of Dodge. This is rather formulaic, but I think FCA should push Fiat as the global small cars, Dodge as sort of FCA's Toyota, Chrysler the semi-luxury brand, Lancia pitted against Mercedes, Alfa concentrating on smaller sport cars, with Ram and Maserati staying more less as-is.
 

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You missed the (European Designed as GM called them) Aurora/Intrigue. Which left many 88/98 customers looking for a replacement somewhere else. We did sell some LeSabre/Parks to these customers, but many wanted the Digital Dashes, believe it or not.
 

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hi Ptk


I generally only do current-to-future stuff
but in addition to GMI's "Revitalization In Action" series that knightfan26917 mentioned,
there were a slew of "My/Your Ideal Lineup" threads originated & 'orchestrated' by AmericanRevolution
which
led me to trying to take on parts of GM ...so from 2008, I guess it now counts as an alternate 'History'
Link ...tho briefly: combining as much as possible of 'The Lost Brands' along with Buick/GMC,
and letting Chevy and Cadillac do what they wanted - which they did



I will go a step further. What if, all 5 lines competed against each other, as it was in the 60's, when Olds was just as big of a competitor to Buick as Merc was?...
for saying Merc correctly!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I love how in-depth you were with a 1980-forward approach. One thing I really couldn't agree with you more is the shift to a more "European" feel for the Chevrolet brand. I have always thought that to be a really smart move for them to do, seeing that Ford did it with great success. Fiesta? European. The Focus, FINALLY we get the European model. Fusion, Aston styling and basically a European Mondeo. Even the Mustang has a perfect blend of classic American style and tasteful European flair, making it my new favorite modern-day muscle car. It's funny how when the Camaro came out, supposedly everyone compared it to a 1962 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta, and if you compare both cars, they do have some shocking similarities. Imagine if Chevrolet drew up the next-gen Camaro to blend that styling, they would have the same recipe for success that Ford did with their current 'Stang. On the same note, imagine if Chevy left the Corvette's current path for something bolder. Perhaps a "retro" late 1950's reflection much like Mercedes did with the SLS-AMG with the old gullwings as their inspiration.
 

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Circa 1980s -

Full size Buick, Olds, and Cadillac should have stayed RWD. Mid sized Buick, Olds, Pontiac should have retained RWD. Chevrolet and Pontiac could have been the experimenters with FWD big cars.

Saturn should not have been born, and resources allocated to the other divisions.

Nothing else in my opinion destroyed Olds' market share than converting wholesale to FWD.
 
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