Don Hudler: "I Didn’t Expect to Finish this Way"

Peter Brown from Automotive News: At 75, Saturn megadealer Don Hudler figures he's going to stick with the brand till the fat lady sings. "We're diehards. We'll probably go to the bitter end," Hudler, the former chairman of Saturn Corp., said last week after the shocking news that Roger Penske's deal to buy the Saturn brand had collapsed. Hudler owns three Saturn dealerships in Houston and three in Dallas. The day after the deal collapsed, floor traffic "all but stopped," he said. Hudler's history is intertwined with the once-promising brand. He was its marketing chief in the early 1990s as Saturn became the industry's leader in customer service and loyalty. Then he became chairman, briefly ran a GM subsidiary that bought more than 20 Saturn dealerships, and then bought the Texas stores in 2001. Now he's looking at an empty cupboard and a slow death for the brand. "I never like to admit that I don't have a plan," he said in a phone interview. "But I was stunned by it. It sounded like it [the sale to Penske] was just waiting to close."

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Flashback Friday: Engineers Testing the Saturn 1.9L 4-Cylinder "Power Module"

Flashback Friday: Engineers Testing the Saturn 1.9L 4-Cylinder "Power Module"

Lift the hood of any S-Series Saturn and you'll find what was the brand's tried-and-true 1.9L engine, or "power module" as it was called back in the day. Before the signature four-cylinder made its way into any Saturn, the engine was extensively tested in a variety of ways, including in two 1984 Chevy Cavaliers.