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Old 03-25-2009, 09:34 PM   #1
skijay
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Default The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

I heard this but did not believe it. It is very sad. If I want my VUE serviced by Saturn I have to drive at least 45 miles.

http://www.masslive.com/news/index.s...ry=Springfield
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Old 03-25-2009, 11:56 PM   #2
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Sorry to hear that. If it's any consolation in many other states Saturn stores are very spread out so many people drive much further than 45 miles for service at Saturn. I am 32 miles from my nearest Saturn and this store sits in a 100 + mile radius of any other Saturn store in my state.

Being most current Saturns wont need a tune-up for 100K, oil changes for 5K, radiator and tranny fluid changes for 150K, I think you will be ok if you don't need frequent warranty work. If you have a 2007 or newer, you do have courtesy transportation, ask your dealer next time. If you have an older s-series scan the thread on how to install platinum plugs and change to longer-life fluids and you will need less maintenance.

Non-warranty work can be performed on any Saturn and will not void your warranty. Some participating GM stores may do warranty work on your car as well, if they know how. Ask around.
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Old 03-26-2009, 01:53 AM   #3
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Since the running list thread was apparently deleted...I think we are closing in on 50 now... I did read the article, found this quote from the interview with the owner interesting:



Cash-strapped GM announced that it plans to eliminate Saturns by 2012. Balise, however, believes the timetable could change.

"We believe it will happen sooner than that, sometime in the next 20 days," he said. (Michael D. Balise, vice president.)
.
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Old 03-26-2009, 07:28 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
Since the running list thread was apparently deleted...I think we are closing in on 50 now... I did read the article, found this quote from the interview with the owner interesting:



Cash-strapped GM announced that it plans to eliminate Saturns by 2012. Balise, however, believes the timetable could change.

"We believe it will happen sooner than that, sometime in the next 20 days," he said. (Michael D. Balise, vice president.)
.

With all due respect, If that were true (and common knowledge) don't you think dealers across the country would be scrambling to offload their inventory ASAP? The vp was just disgruntled when he said that and it is without any basis. "Believes" is the key word here. I for one am still waiting for any official announcement from Saturn which hopefully will be soon.

btw - Before the thread got deleted, after eliminating errors and Canadian stores I counted only 38 dealers last week in the USA that had closed. As individual members have posted one by one, I added them too, it is still in the low 40's and there are still over 400 stores open in the US to date.

Cheers! Hopefully we will hear something good from Saturn soon.
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Old 03-26-2009, 02:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Quote:
Originally Posted by marx404 View Post
With all due respect, If that were true (and common knowledge) don't you think dealers across the country would be scrambling to offload their inventory ASAP? The vp was just disgruntled when he said that and it is without any basis. "Believes" is the key word here. I for one am still waiting for any official announcement from Saturn which hopefully will be soon.

btw - Before the thread got deleted, after eliminating errors and Canadian stores I counted only 38 dealers last week in the USA that had closed. As individual members have posted one by one, I added them too, it is still in the low 40's and there are still over 400 stores open in the US to date.

Cheers! Hopefully we will hear something good from Saturn soon.
While your tireless efforts to remain stubbornly 100% positive may be admirable, since North America is the only place that even has Saturn dealers, removing the ones that closed in Canada is not a reflection of either accuracy or reality. Deleting the entire thread seems to be an effort perhaps to hide the truth... To dismiss the comments of an owner who, looking at the whole picture, and having first hand knowledge of what the future short and long terms holds, as "disgruntled" is simply not accurate either. The opening costs of a Saturn franchise were well into 7 figures. The decision to close one is not made lightly. The dealers cannot "offload" their inventory, as they do not own it outright...they can however return it to who does...GM, and work out the individuals financials as they apply to each situation, and that is slowly happening across the country, despite your denials. Prior to the current economic fall, other retailers had also closed, as despite the lauded "new" lineup, sales had already began to fall due to GM's meddling. But I guess we do not count those...right? I appreciate your need to stay focused and positive, but I am likewise sure that others see it as I do, an attempt to keep the passengers on this ship calm, as the cold waters of the North Atlantic continue to rise up towards the deck.

I hesitated to write this post, as I am sure since it does not meet the apparently new requirement that all threads must meet the all is well mantra, its time here is already limited, even though it does not violate a single forum rule that I am aware of.
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Old 03-26-2009, 04:15 PM   #6
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

While I can appreciate your concerns, as I said in another post, those numbers were not actually verified and I actually called only to find that the stores I called were actually OPEN and not closed, making that list not fully accurate.

I don't see any incidents of censorship here but rather Charlie trying to keep this forum informative and civil while maintaining verified information is posted, not just speculations and rumors sprinkled with truth. Given the circumstance, I think he is doing a fine job.

As far as me being "100 percent positive" , er - nope, I have my qualms with GM AND Saturn, yeppers I do, and would be more than glad to discuss them. I do believe that Saturn can survive this and can only survive this if people are supportive to the brand, despite the odds and be a little more patient to see what Saturn officially announces.
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Old 03-26-2009, 04:37 PM   #7
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
Since the running list thread was apparently deleted....
Was it? Boo!
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Old 03-26-2009, 05:44 PM   #8
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Actually, I've always had to drive about 60 miles to any Saturn dealer to get mine serviced. I just try to make a day of it and since my retailer has always given me a loaner to drive--I go out and shop,have lunch, and/ or a movie with my wife. Only once has my Saturn ( an early S) stranded me--they sent a flat-bed and brought me a loaner to the house!
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Old 03-27-2009, 01:37 AM   #9
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Quote:
Originally Posted by marx404 View Post
.

As far as me being "100 percent positive" , er - nope, I have my qualms with GM AND Saturn, yeppers I do, and would be more than glad to discuss them. I do believe that Saturn can survive this and can only survive this if people are supportive to the brand, despite the odds and be a little more patient to see what Saturn officially announces.
I appreciate your candor, and understand and appreciate your need to hold your tongue for the time being. As far as "supporting the brand" Give me something besides rebadged GM clones, and "American" cars built in Mexico, and I'll consider it.

I stopped buying Levi's jeans (after 20+ years as a faithful customer) when they closed their last US plant.
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:32 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
I appreciate your candor, and understand and appreciate your need to hold your tongue for the time being. As far as "supporting the brand" Give me something besides rebadged GM clones, and "American" cars built in Mexico, and I'll consider it.

I stopped buying Levi's jeans (after 20+ years as a faithful customer) when they closed their last US plant.
Haha, I know what you mean about Levis, they just don't fit the same anymore, LOL.
Then again, I quit drinking Jack Daniels after the rumor that they were abusive to employees and would not let them take bathroom breaks, some had to wear diapers.

As far as the current line-up, the only Saturn vehicle built in Mexico is the VUE.
The Astra is made in Opel's Belgium plant, a "captive import" for US only.
Those are the only imports.

The Aura is made in Kansas City, Kansas.
The Outlook is made in Lansing, Michigan.
The SKY is made in Wilmington, Delaware.

GM has had a long history of sharing platforms with many other brands, nothing new at all. Olds Omega anyone? J-body car anyone? Camaro anyone? See? the same old re-engineering and rebranding has been around for decades.

The Aura (which replaced the L-series) is a US built derivative of Opel's Vectra and came out long before GM shared it with Chevy. (dumb move but the old "rent-a-Bu" was quite outdated and direly needed to be replaced).

The Outlook came out quite awhile before the GMC Acadia and then there was the Buick Enclave and now the Chevy Traverse. (that was a huge mistake IMO).

The SKY was an original concept at the 2004 Frankfurt Auto show. The Solstice which was and is intended to be built side by side in the DE plant debuted about a year and a half earlier and was a smashing success, paving the way for the SKY which debuted in 2006 almost identically as the original concept design was. Later on, the same DE plant also rebadged the SKY as a Daewoo and a Opel GT and Exported it.

Mexico has a long history of building quality vehicles for the US, including but not limited to the Chevy Avalanche, VW Beetle, new Saturn VUE, and some upcoming Chevy models.

An interesting article on this scenario: http://www.epi.org/economic_snapshot...hots_20090317/

While outsourcing is a sore thumb to me, if I may play hypocritical for a moment, it's ultimately the quality that counts for me personally, not where it is built.
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Old 03-27-2009, 12:21 PM   #11
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

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... I stopped buying Levi's jeans (after 20+ years as a faithful customer) when they closed their last US plant.
I trust that the patches you are using to keep old your Levi's intact are US-made? Or, maybe you just can't leave the house during daylight hours?
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Old 03-27-2009, 12:26 PM   #12
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

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... Then again, I quit drinking Jack Daniels after the rumor that they were abusive to employees and would not let them take bathroom breaks, some had to wear diapers.
I would wouldn't drink the stuff either ... probably added too much "tang" to JD's mountain spring water for the oak barrels and charcoal to completely filter it out.
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Old 03-27-2009, 12:39 PM   #13
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

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I trust that the patches you are using to keep old your Levi's intact are US-made? Or, maybe you just can't leave the house during daylight hours?

Patches? we don' need no steenking patches. Where do you think the ripped jean look of the '80's came from? LOL
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Old 03-27-2009, 12:43 PM   #14
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Quote:
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Mexico has a long history of building quality vehicles for the US, including but not limited to the Chevy Avalanche, VW Beetle, new Saturn VUE, and some upcoming Chevy models.
Most reliable vehicle I ever owned (leased, actually), was a 2003 Buick Rendzvous FWD built in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico.
Add also Dodge RAM and PT Cruiser to your list.
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Old 03-27-2009, 08:34 PM   #15
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
While your tireless efforts to remain stubbornly 100% positive may be admirable, since North America is the only place that even has Saturn dealers, removing the ones that closed in Canada is not a reflection of either accuracy or reality. Deleting the entire thread seems to be an effort perhaps to hide the truth... To dismiss the comments of an owner who, looking at the whole picture, and having first hand knowledge of what the future short and long terms holds, as "disgruntled" is simply not accurate either. The opening costs of a Saturn franchise were well into 7 figures. The decision to close one is not made lightly. The dealers cannot "offload" their inventory, as they do not own it outright...they can however return it to who does...GM, and work out the individuals financials as they apply to each situation, and that is slowly happening across the country, despite your denials. Prior to the current economic fall, other retailers had also closed, as despite the lauded "new" lineup, sales had already began to fall due to GM's meddling. But I guess we do not count those...right? I appreciate your need to stay focused and positive, but I am likewise sure that others see it as I do, an attempt to keep the passengers on this ship calm, as the cold waters of the North Atlantic continue to rise up towards the deck.

I hesitated to write this post, as I am sure since it does not meet the apparently new requirement that all threads must meet the all is well mantra, its time here is already limited, even though it does not violate a single forum rule that I am aware of.
I purchased 3 Saturns from the Saturn dealership in Springfield, Mass.
I also got to know Mike Balise over many years as I was a long time customer and knew him because I was in the advertising business in Massachusetts for
15 years.

Mike Balise is a straight shooter. If he intimates something is going to happen in the next 20 days I'll be watching to see just what that is.
He is a strong businessman, who, as the article mentioned, owns 18 other dealerships. That Saturn dealership had a great reputation, provided excellent service and was once a successful dealership.
When GM, starved Saturn for years with no new product, that is when Saturn
of Springfield's sales, like the other Saturn dealerships around the country,
started to drop. Yes it's sad.
I'm not happy with the rebadged Saturns in the new lineup. I looked at the Astra and it seemed too pricey to me for such a small car.
I own a 2004 Vue, which I love, but realizing the 'good ole days' are gone I went out last week and purchased a 2006 Buick LaCrosse.

Maybe someday if Saturn becomes independant of GM and goes back to its
roots I'll revisit the brand but life has to go on.
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Old 03-27-2009, 09:20 PM   #16
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfman View Post
I stopped buying Levi's jeans (after 20+ years as a faithful customer) when they closed their last US plant.
I just bought some Carhartt jeans from AllAmericanClothing
I also bought 2 T shirts from AAC and a polo from a company called KingLouie. The polo shirt is pretty nice.

I'd rather have Mexican stuff than Chinese stuff if that's the only option. Mexicans will buy more US goods.

I'm trying to find US made drill bits if you've got any ideas.
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:03 PM   #17
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Speaking of Mike Balise...He is a great guy and helped me out when I had my problematic L100. I have a Toyota dealership in my town, but I drove to West Springfield Ma, to buy my Scion from Balise Toyota / Scion. I have always had great service from Balise owned dealerships including the defunct Saturn of Enfield and Hadley.
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Old 03-28-2009, 07:49 AM   #18
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

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Speaking of Mike Balise...He is a great guy and helped me out when I had my problematic L100. I have a Toyota dealership in my town, but I drove to West Springfield Ma, to buy my Scion from Balise Toyota / Scion. I have always had great service from Balise owned dealerships including the defunct Saturn of Enfield and Hadley.
Not saying Mike is a bad guy, but out of respect towards other fellow Saturn dealers he should never had made such a doom and gloom speculation to the media. As you see, this article has gained national attention here.
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Old 03-29-2009, 10:14 PM   #19
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

Having a dealer 45 miles away for ANY make is not convenient. If I had the ownership experience that I had with my 2001 L100 and it was needed to be driven or towed 45 miles to a Saturn retailer for warranty work - it would have been long gone. That vehicle was constantly in for repairs for the one year that I owned until Saturn bought it back and I bought the VUE.

Driving 45 minutes to an hour for service stinks! Think of the unnecessary wear and tear, time off from work, possibility to have to incur a cost of a rental car. I do not care what make of car / truck it is, for me having a dealership(s) within a 20 mile radius is a selling feature. It has been one of the reasons for my last 4 new Saturn purchases since November of 1995.

I have considered a 2009 VUE for a replacement for the 2003 VUE because I can genuinely say I like my 03 VUE and I like the new VUE. It was in the running with the Outback and Forester. I can not see the logic for me to go to Saturn of Worcester (MA), Saturn of Watertown(CT) or even on my way up north skiing to go to Saturn of White River Junction(VT) to buy it & get it serviced. If the Subaru dealer was just as far away as the Saturn - it would be crossed off of my list, too.
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Old 03-29-2009, 10:36 PM   #20
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Default Re: The last retailer in my area has closed (Springfield, MA)...

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I do not care what make of car / truck it is, for me having a dealership(s) within a 20 mile radius is a selling feature.
I won't even consider a dealer unless it's within a 10 mile radius for me. I guess I'm used to being in a fairly large city with multiple dealers.
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