Brand, Retailers, Jobs Face Grim Prospects as Penske Pulls Out of Saturn Purchase

G. Chambers Williams III from the Tennessean: While dealers still hope Saturn might be saved, GM expects all the dealerships will be closed by the end of next year, if not sooner. Asked if GM would seek another buyer, Thomas Pyden, a GM spokesman, said: "I guess never say never, but our focus now is on implementing the wind-down agreements and working with our Saturn retailers to be as transparent and cooperative as possible through the process." The disintegrating Penske deal was especially brutal news for Saturn dealers and thousands of their employees, who believed they had managed to escape the guillotine with Penske's arrival at the negotiating table last June. "It's disappointing, but we haven't heard any details yet, so I really can't comment," said C.M. "Bill" Gatton, a Bristol, Tenn.-based dealer who owns all three of the Nashville-area Saturn stores, in Madison, Cool Springs and Clarksville. "We do want to assure our customers that they will not have to worry about their warranties," he said. "Other than that, we're kind of in the dark right now."

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AutoBlogGreen is running a poll asking readers to choose their "Green Car of the Year", based on the Green Car Journal's five finalists already selected. GCJ will announce their best pick, and will present the chosen manufacturer with the coveted 2009 Green Car of the Year trophy during the LA Auto Show later this month. For now, the '09 Saturn Vue 2-Mode Hybrid could use your help battling it out with the other finalists - the Ford Fusion hybrid, the BMW 335d, the VW Jetta TDI and the Smart ForTwo - in ABG's poll.