Saturn Crossover Confirmed for 2006

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Saturn officials confirmed last month plans to build a large crossover sport wagon in 2006. The long-rumored "big brother" to the Vue will be the first vehicle based on GM's new Lambda architecture. The Lambda architecture will be the basis for all future GM large sport wagons and minivans. Automotive News reports that the company hopes to build 100,000 of the Saturn branded vehicles. Two trim levels will reportedly be offered: base and uplevel. The front- and all-wheel-drive sport wagon will be larger than the Vue; it will reportedly be sized to compete with the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander. In the first model year, the sole powerplant will be a GM V6 engine, but sources say that Saturn will offer a V8 as an option in its second year of production. As with many upcoming Saturn models, the company's trademark polymer body panels will be replaced with a more tradition steel body.

The unnamed Saturn will be built in GM's new Delta Township manufacturing plant under constriction near Lansing, Michigan. Vue production will remain in Spring Hill, Tennessee.

Source: Automotive News

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Mysterious Ohio Based Investment Group Arises as a Potential Buyer

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Update on May 7th: Leading negotiations for this group is Gary Marvicsin. Detroit News reports that he is employed in the auto industry.

Detroit News reports that there is a mysterious Ohio based investment group interested in acquiring Saturn. Unlike the other interested buyers, this group has developed a concept to keep the company domestically based. According to the article, the group is interested in purchasing domestically abandoned manufacturing plants to produce Saturns. Chrysler plants that are targeted to close due to bankruptcy troubles were specifically mentioned. The group wants to continue to employee UAW workers at these plants. While recognizing the high costs associated with employing union workers, such as benefits and pensions, the group believes that it is the right move for two reasons.