GM Says it Will Close Saturn After Sale Falls Through

Ken Bensinger from the LA Times: General Motors' deal to sell Saturn to the Penske Automotive Group has fallen through, forcing the automaker to shutter the brand altogether. The sale had been expected to be completed as soon as this week. The news is a blow to GM, which had made selling three of its brands, along with shutting Pontiac, a key component to its post-bankruptcy restructuring efforts. Instead of selling Saturn, GM will now close the brand altogether. It said today that its Saturn dealers had already signed a "wind-down agreement." Under terms of a similar agreement signed by some other GM dealers, all new-car sales operations must cease by late 2010. Penske, which operates a chain of dealerships around the country, emerged as a buyer for Saturn in early June, beating out several other interested parties, including an Oklahoma-based private wealth fund.

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2008 "ClapSaturn" Aura XE

2008 "ClapSaturn" Aura XE

I was fortunate enough to meet up with Al Clapsaddle, sales consultant at Saturn/West, earlier this week for breakfast during a brief stop in Columbus, Ohio. I had an opportunity to get an up close look at his newly-modified 2008 Aura midsize sedan. Over the years Al has enjoyed personalizing all of his Saturns, and his '08 Aura is no different.