GM to Ax Saturn, Neuter Pontiac

Saturnlineup
The biggest consumer news immediately evident in the plan GM just submitted to the U.S. government in hopes of securing additional funding for a restructuring includes the elimination of Saturn as a brand. Dealers will stay open through 2011, but product development overall will cease. That means 2010 and 2011 Saturn models will just be newly minted versions of what’s already available, and they may or may not receive minor updates, like added safety features.

Pontiac will cease to exist as a separate brand inside GM, and instead will exist as a nameplate only, sold through GM’s combination Buick, GMC and Pontiac dealerships, which have been consolidated over the past few years. The company will reduce the number of Pontiac models to just a few “niche” products, presumably performance-oriented cars like the new G8 sedan that they can borrow from existing global platforms. That move would limit development costs.

The future of Saab and Hummer isn’t as clear, but they’ll most likely be sold off or discontinued entirely.

GM To Officially Kill Saturn Brand, Most Of Pontiac (Jalopnik)

By David Thomas | February 17, 2009 | Comments (14)

Comments 

broq

So, who exactly would buy a saturn now? They are going to have awful resale values. Why drag the closure out so far?

Broq

.

it will b a shame 2 c the Astra go away from N.A. They should bring the nxt gen as a Chevy or Buick!

tscurt

I miss what Pontiac was. I will not miss what it is now.

dan

Steps in the right direction, but is it too little, too late? At the very least they should have scaled back these lines long ago.

Terry

It's sad to see Saturn go to the chopping block. They really had a niche going for a while there but unfortunately in the end succumbed to the beast that GM really is/was...so much for being different.

To be honest, I thought Hummer would go well before Saturn, how often do you see an H3, let alone an H2, on the road anymore? Still see new Auras on a daily basis.

Ken L.

Drastic change will only occur when they're forced to, like now!

John

The only one I'm lamenting is the possibility of losing SAAB altogether. It's the only one of those four with real "nostalgia." True, at one point Pontiac had strong brand identity, but those days are so far gone. SAAB still has a lot of character, and I'd be sad to see it go.

Claude

"Pontiac will cease to exist as a separate brand inside GM, and instead will exist as a nameplate only, sold through GM’s combination Buick, GMC and Pontiac dealerships, which have been consolidated over the past few years."

More proof that GM still has no clue.

J

Just watched the late night news. HUMMER will be dead FINALLY!!
Saturn will be under strategic review.

Nothing mentioned about Pontiac.
(The G3 and G5 are jokes.)

Zerf

Billy, I agree I thought Hummer would also be the first to go. It has a bad image with customers of being all gas guzzling, earth unfriendly cars. Like has been pointed out there are not many Hummers on the road. They could save costs and improve image by dumping that brand. It is also the newest consumer brand for GM.

Buick would have been the next most obvious brand to kill. Yes it has been around a long time and I would have to see it go but they ruined it for the seniors that were buying them religiously when they dumped models like the LeSabre, Regal and Century. The new models they replaced them with did not appear to young or old. I understand reinventing a brand but talk about missing the target. So the seniors have moved on to Toyotas and no one else has moved in to take their place in sales.

Skinner

It is really a shame what they did to Saturn. It was ground breaking in its day, from how they were built to what they were built of. Not to mention outstanding economy and decent (although never sportscar) performance.

Figures GM would screw up a good idea.

Talley

Saturn was never a market leader in any catagory. If not for the plastic door panels they would be no different then the other GM economy car crap that it turns out. Saturn was a gimmick at best.

Original sheth

Talley:

saturn wasnt a gimmick at all. The plan worked well but GM didnt invest in new products in the mid 90s. Once they invested in products it was apparently too late. Part of the issue was that Saturn loyalists couldnt accept that Saturn had become a full fledged brand that sold more than compact cars. They really werent interested in the Outlook or Aura to a lesser extent. The product at Saturn is solid but many Americans shop brand names only and thus ignored Saturn in spite of the products.

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