Saturn’s Sad Story Nears an End

David Welch from Business Week: The long, sad saga of Saturn is finally over. The once-hot General Motors division that began with a bang 19 years ago is now headed into oblivion after a deal to sell it to retailer Penske Automotive Group fell apart on September 30. The chain of auto dealerships released a statement saying it couldn't find a source to manufacture new car models after 2011, when GM was scheduled to cease production of the existing Saturn models. In an interview in early August, GM CEO Frederick A. "Fritz" Henderson said the decision to sell Saturn was aimed at taking care of longtime dealers. It wasn't about a business strategy for GM. When asked if he was handing a rival carmaker a strong retail chain that could take market share from GM, Henderson replied, "We're not going to make it easy for them."

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AMP Taking Orders for Electric Sky Conversions

Electric Saturn Sky

After one year development, an Ohio company is now taking orders to convert a gasoline-powered Saturn Skys to 100% electric power. The company, Advanced Mechanical Products (AMP), is replacing the combustion drivetrain with electric motors, safe lithium batteries, and proprietary control software. "The prototype is in the final stage, and production will take place later this year, with deliveries beginning in 2009," said Jack Kuntz, AMP CEO.