GM Stops Saturn Production; What Now?
GM stopped producing new Saturns yesterday after news broke that its deal to sell the brand to Penske Automotive Group fell through. People were shocked in both the executive suites of Detroit and the 350 Saturn dealerships across the country. Add in the thousands of Saturn owners and potential buyers, and there’s a lot of confusion over the future of GM’s formerly “different” car company. Here’s what you need to know if you’re a Saturn owner or potential buyer.
Current owners’ warranties are still fully backed by GM and will be serviced by other GM brand dealerships — Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC and Buick.
As of Sept. 1, Saturn’s total inventory was 14,700 units, according to Automotive News data. Saturn representatives say there is an inventory of 12,000 vehicles on dealer lots and in transit. The company sold 1,303 vehicles in September, which by our math leaves about 10,700-13,400 Saturns out in the wild. Saturn says the 12,000 figure is good for four months of sales. Using real-world sales (that’s 1,303 per month), it seems they have nearly nine months of inventory.
GM halted production of all Saturns as of yesterday. The current new models for sale include 2008 Astra and the 2009 Aura, Aura Hybrid, Outlook, Sky, Vue and Vue Hybrid.
Cars.com shows more than 6,600 new Saturns in our new-car inventory. You can search your area’s availability by changing the ZIP here.
There are currently no manufacturer incentives on any of the models. Whether there are deals to be made is debatable. Often, dealers with low inventories won’t be anxious to move product. However, if a dealer is looking to cut its losses and close up shop as soon as possible, there could be deals to be had.
All dealerships will be closed by October 2010, according to GM. Many expect to close sooner because of a lack of cars to sell.
Parts will still be available for Saturn cars.