The Sky... and Beyond

In the beginning, back in the early '90s, Saturn had the three elements of enduring brands -- innovative and high quality product, great marketing, and a terrific retail experience. So what happened? It's no mystery. We didn't grow our portfolio or evolve the product. We offered one vehicle for 10 straight years. Sure, customers loved the car, but love doesn't sustain a division. You need all three elements - great product, marketing and retail - to succeed.

Today, I spoke at the auto industry's Management Briefing Seminar in Traverse City, Michigan. I have to admit, it was a pretty fun day. I spent the day talking about Saturn's revitalization. The revitalization builds on our strengths - great marketing and retail experience - and adds product to the mix. By the end of 2006, we'll double our portfolio with three dynamic new vehicles and an all-new design. Our primary buyers are import intenders, so we looked overseas, to Europe, for our future design and now share an external and internal design language with Opel. The Saturn look is bold and fresh, with taut, crisp forms. And the interiors are soft, warm and inviting.

The first vehicle out of the gate with the new look is the highly anticipated Sky roadster, our signature car. The Sky sends a powerful message and will change the way people think about us. Next is our midsize sedan, which I announced today, called the Aura. Trust me, you won't be disappointed; it's just like the concept we introduced at the 2005 Detroit auto show. The Aura will launch in summer 2006. And, let me tell you, it's going to be a blast to drive with a 3.6L V-6 with an estimated 250 hp. I also announced our plans to launch an all-new midsize crossover utility vehicle, the Outlook. The Outlook will seat up to eight passengers in three rows and will round out our portfolio.

But this revitalization isn't only about future product, it's also about our current lineup. We're adding more refinement and content across the board, while reducing MSRPs. OnStar is now standard on every Saturn. Safety has long been a Saturn hallmark and this brings it to a whole new level.

It might seem like everything's changing at Saturn, but that's not true. We'll always be a trusted brand that puts you first, and we'll always give you a premium purchase and ownership experience. That's the Saturn promise. With our highest score to date, Saturn is the top non-luxury brand in the most recent J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Index. And that's a position we're not willing to give up. We're determined to make Saturn a great brand again - with great marketing, a retail experience and product.

Up next: bringing the Saturn promise to new segments and new customers. But, that's a story for another day...

Source: Jill Lajdziak - Saturn General Manager

Random Article from the Archives

Saturn Plugs in with Pre-Production Vue Hybrid, Flextreme Concept at DC Auto Show

Saturn Plugs in with Pre-Production Vue Hybrid, Flextreme Concept at DC Auto Show

This year's DC auto show was different than in the past. Instead of displaying year-old concept cars and last year's pre-production vehicles, many automakers diverted their newest cars – which were en route to Chicago for their big show later this week – to what had been a second-tier auto show in years past.