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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
GMI Interviews: Craig Bierley
Interview by Big Al & Tahoe

Craig Bierley was previously the director of product development before he moved to his new post as marketing director of the Pontiac division. We were able to ask Craig some deep questions regarding where he thinks Pontiac's place is in the GM stable, in addition to what he would like to see coming out of Pontiac in years to come.

GMInsideNews: Will Pontiac move to the rumored alpha chassis, or will it remain a FWD/RWD mix?

Craig Bierley: Pontiac will never be fully 100% invested in either way. We see a market for both FWD and RWD as we are still looking into our strengths. We have the G6 that does very well, as well as the G8 which both use different drive train setups.

GMI: Will the G6 be receiving any major updates before moving moving to the Epsilon II architecture?

CB: We don’t have any official plans in regards to updating the G6 before it’s redesigned. Last year was the first full line of sales of G6 and there was over a 9% increase in sales. The G6 is doing extremely well for us.

GMI: What are some plans that Pontiac has in regards to meeting the café standards. Will it’s image change?

CB: Pontiac will be about affordable performance. A car doesn’t have to be a gas guzzler in order to be a performance machine. We will take steps when the right solutions come and are in place.

GMI: What updates are there in terms of the G5? Are there any plans for a G5 Sedan?

CB: Currently there are no plans for an update of the G5. In the future we would like more differentiation when compared to the Cobalt. Currently there are no plans for a G5 sedan as the Vibe plays an important role in regards to having an entry level four door vehicle. However, I would like a G5 Sedan due to the growth in the small car market.

GMI: You clearly have a strong image in the United States as a brand. Are there any plans to carry the Pontiac brand outside the United States?

CB: No, we will remain a North-American-Only car brand.

GMI: Since you were the past product director of GMC, and as we are sitting near the awesome GMC Denali XT concept, can you tell us if General Motors has any plans to begin producing car-based pickup trucks?

CB: As of now, the Denali XT is a design study only. Is there a possibility that GM is looking at car-based pickups? I would say so, I mean clearly the idea is in our heads. It is a great looking truck though, isn't it?

GMI: Absolutely. And in regards to combining Buick Pontiac and GMC under one sales channel, how does this help strengthen Pontiac's image?

CB: Well, each of these divisions has such a strong image. Buick has the highly styled, very luxurious, smooth driving vehicles. GMC has been and always will be a truck/suv only division delivering professional grade trucks and SUVs. Pontiac will solidify it's position as a styling and performance leader aimed towards the younger market. This combination gives us a greater diversity than any of the other divisions can deliver. It allows us to focus on niche vehicles, while generating great sales in the mainstream channel.

GMI: As we know, the Pontiac Torrent will be moving to GMC under the possible name of Terrain if we remember correctly.

CB: Have we confirmed that yet?

GMI: [Inner thoughts: What! We though this was confirmed months ago!?] Oh, well in that case, are there any plans for Pontiac to produce SUVs and if so, how does this fit into Pontiac's "performance" branded image.

CB: Pontiac will deliver products that provide a clear focus on performance.

VIDEO: Craig Bierley on the Pontiac Vibe

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The Terrain will most likely be replacing our Envoy and they haven't even done anything with it yet?!?!?!
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