Minivan to Debut in 2004

GM told retailers at the 2003 National Auto Dealer Association (NADA) convention that Saturn and Buick will get minivans in 2004. The announcement, made by General Motors Vice President John Middlebrook on Sunday, indicates further commitment by GM to grow the Saturn brand. Saturn's minivan will arrive in the third quarter of 2004 as a 2005 model.

Automotive News reports that Middlebrook said Saturn's minivan will target "economy-minded import buyers," while the Buick version will be decidely more upscale. The Chevrolet Venture and Pontiac Montana will also be completely overhauled at the same time. "There's an opportunity to win in the minivan market if you can take the (soccer mom) stigma off," said Middlebrook. The Car Connection added that GM will use "innovative" and distinctive designs to distinguish its minivans from not only each other, but from the competition. GM hopes the the new model will continue to attract new customers into the brand. According to Middlebrook, the all-new Saturn minivan "will help us reach young buyers as well as import-oriented buyers."

GM will apparently refresh 25 percent of its product line in 2003 and another 25 percent 2004.

Source: Automotive News, The Car Connection

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