Saturn Deal is Called a New Business Model

Tim Higgins from the Detroit Free Press: Jack Nerad of Kelley Blue Book heralded the Penske-Saturn deal as "one of the most significant developments in a month that has been full of significant developments. The proposed acquisition marks the beginning of a new business model in this industry, a model in which the distribution side of the business controls the brand, and manufacturing is conducted by one or more sub-contractors." Penske Automotive Group is in talks with several automakers about providing new vehicles to the Saturn dealer network. Penske's deal with General Motors, which has not yet been finalized, provides him with GM-made vehicles for two years. "We have been in discussions during this diligence period with a number of manufacturers on a worldwide basis," Penske told reporters Friday. "We would expect to have a lineup going forward, which would be manufactured by a worldwide partner."

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Breaking News: GM to Focus on Core Brands, "Explore Alternatives" with Saturn

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General Motors presented a restructuring plan to Congress earlier this afternoon with hopes of receiving $12 billion in term loans that it believes will help ensure liquidity through the end of 2009. As part of the plan, General Motors revealed that it intends to focus on its "core brands" - Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC, and Buick. Pontiac will become a "specialty" brand that sells niche vehicles. Saturn, Saab, and Hummer will be closed or sold.