GM May Complete Saturn Shutdown by the End of March, Not October 2010 as Previously Announced

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From AutoWeek: "All of our efforts will be to sell down our remaining 2009 inventory," Susan Docherty, GM's vice president of U.S. sales, said today at a press event. "We'll have a little bit of carryover of that into the first quarter of 2010, but the objective is to keep our inventory somewhere between 425,000 to 450,000 units." Docherty said she is confident that GM will clear out the 2009-model-year inventory by January. Meanwhile, the company likely will shutter its Pontiac and Saturn brands by the end of the first quarter, Docherty said. GM has only about 10,000 Pontiac vehicles left and 8,000 Saturns, she said. "We're actually winding down those products quicker than we had anticipated," he said.

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John Heilig from The Auto Page loved the details surrounding the 2008 Saturn Astra XR 5-door that he drove. "You recognize its European heritage with the 'switchblade' key that looks as if it came form the Audi/VW parts bin," he wrote. "The Astra has projector beam headlights nestled in plastic-covered nacelles. They consist of three units on each side and they're very impressive in a small car. It's what you'd expect in a high-end mid-size for example."