2010 Saturn Aura 'Official' Spy Shots (nee Opel, Vauxhall Insignia)

2010 Saturn Aura 'Official' Spy Shots (nee Opel, Vauxhall Insignia)

Camouflage and disguise are crucial when new model prototypes first leave the well-protected confines of the design studio or workshop and head out onto the test track or open road. Although a great deal of today's vehicle proving can be conducted in advance by computer simulation or on the test bench, there inevitably comes the day when all test results have to be validated, and the car must be released into its natural habitat – the road.

Now it's the turn of Insignia – Vauxhall's new mid-size car that debuts at the British Motor Show on July 22nd – to take to the public roads. With a highly attractive, completely new body line and sculptural design, Insignia is set to cause a sensation in its class – but surprises only work if they are not revealed beforehand.

The team responsible for camouflaging prototypes began making their preparations for the test phase when the new car first progressed beyond computer simulations and clay models. Together with chief designers and engineers, the team established which of the car's characteristic lines should be kept hidden the longest from prototype paparazzi.

Together, they developed a "facelift" for the upcoming model that would disguise the prototypes as much as possible. One of the variants had an especially elegant, flowing rear section, for instance, so a pronounced spoiler was designed to mask it. A wooden model was built as a cast to form the plastic camouflage parts needed for around 200 test cars that have to be disguised in the run-up to series production.

Click here for more photos of the next-generation Opel Insignia, Vauxhall Insignia, and Saturn Aura.

Source: Vauxhall

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General Motors Employee Pricing Sale Extended to September 30th; 2009 Aura, Outlook, and Sky Added to the Program

Saturn Employee Pricing Logo

General Motors announced today that the company will extend it's popular 100th anniversary employee pricing sale until the end of September. The sale "helped drive additional showroom traffic and our dealers are giving us some very enthusiastic feedback," said Mark LaNeve, vice president of GM North America Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing. "We had our best sales month so far in 2008." As a result, he said GM "added 19 additional 2009 models to the eligible list of vehicles because our 2008 stock on dealer lots is rapidly disappearing." Among the 2009 models added today were the Saturn Aura sedan, Outlook crossover, and Sky roadster.