Penske "a Good Home" for Saturn as General Motors Shrinks in Bankruptcy

Katie Merx and Doron Levin from Bloomberg: Unloading Saturn is a step toward GM's goal of disposing of four of its eight US brands while reorganizing in Chapter 11. Because Bloomfield Hills, Michigan-based Penske Auto isn't a manufacturer, it will have to find a supplier of new vehicles. For GM, getting a buyer able to run a dealer network and market the vehicles "is like finally finding your puppy a good home," said Jack Nerad, an auto analyst at car-pricing service Kelley Blue Book in Irvine, California. "Penske is incredibly well-respected in the business," said Stephanie Brinley, an auto analyst at consulting firm AutoPacific Inc. in Troy, Michigan. "It should help Saturn maintain the reputation it has for reaching the consumers. Starting in the mid-1990s, Saturn was all but ignored for a decade, with little new product. GM in the first half of 2006 began introducing a completely new lineup of higher-quality Saturns that are available today. Still, Saturn wasn't profitable. "It takes more than just a couple years of new product after 10 years of nothing going into the brand," Nerad said. "To me Saturn is one of the saddest missed opportunities at GM. I think there's a good chance it will be successful. The smart marketers at Penske can figure it out."

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