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Old 12-09-2008, 08:17 AM   #1
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Default Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Detroit Free Press columnist Tom Walsh: Even the possible phaseout of GM's Saturn division, Lutz said, was in the works well before Congress demanded that GM produce a so-called viability plan by December 2 to show it can become self-sufficient and pay back its loans. Saturn has its best-reviewed product lineup in years, including the Aura sedan.

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Old 12-09-2008, 08:46 AM   #2
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Sad Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

I don't blame Bob Lutz personally but this sounds like a CYA statement to me. He couldn't say it beforehand because it would make prospective Saturn customers reluctant to buy a new Saturn. Now it sounds good because you wouldn't want it to seem that the idea to end Saturn came from a politician when you are the one who is supposed to be the expert on the car business. The truth is that Saturn was ended as an independent brand years ago and what they are admitting now is that marketing Opel variations as Saturns in the US has not been profitable, regardless of how nice the new vehicles are. GM took a risky shot with this strategy and lost.

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:02 AM   #3
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Mad Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

Oh, and Hummer is a viable product? Why not come out and say what you REALLY mean, Putz? Both Lutz and Wagoner actually said it during the first Congressional hearing, but it seems nobody caught on: "The average transaction for a SUV is about $4,000, considerably less for smaller vehicles".

"Transaction" actually means profit in GMSpeak.

So the real reason that they want to get rid of the only company that produces small -fuel efficient cars, which is exactly what the Government is asking for, is profit.

GM never properly invested marketing or advertisement in Saturn they way they did with other brands, naturally making Saturn unknown and unprofitable, GM's own fault.

I agree with Obama and cannot wait for him to carry out this initiative:
FIRE LUTZ AND WAGONER IMMEDIATELY !!!!

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:56 AM   #4
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

Dig my post in this thread:

http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=130226

Saturn goes and they hang onto Pontiac?

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Old 12-09-2008, 12:32 PM   #5
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

Pontiac has brand equity...Saturn doesn't. All funding to new products to Saturn have been stopped. Saturn's best days are now...they won't exisit in a few years.

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Old 12-09-2008, 12:38 PM   #6
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Oh, and Hummer is a viable product? Why not come out and say what you REALLY mean, Putz? Both Lutz and Wagoner actually said it during the first Congressional hearing, but it seems nobody caught on: "The average transaction for a SUV is about $4,000, considerably less for smaller vehicles".
"Transaction" actually means profit in GMSpeak.
So the real reason that they want to get rid of the only company that produces small -fuel efficient cars, which is exactly what the Government is asking for, is profit.
Unless you're willing to pay $25K- $32K for your Astra, quit whining

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Old 12-09-2008, 01:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Pontiac has brand equity...Saturn doesn't. All funding to new products to Saturn have been stopped. Saturn's best days are now...they won't exisit in a few years.
What equity? What model do they sell that couldn't be a Chevy or Buick? I'll admit, the same can be said for Saturn, but Saturn brings in a decent amount of non-GM people, the same can't be said for Pontiac.

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Old 12-09-2008, 01:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

This was posted by Charlie back on September 16, 2008. Thought I would dredge it up out of the archives.

Detroit News: Saturn is GM's Brand for the Future

As part of it's coverage of General Motors' 100th anniversary, the Detroit News profiled Saturn and discussed the brand's past, present, and future. Saturn is "in the middle of a transformation," five-time Saturn owner David Hyde, an automotive historian at Wayne State University, told the newspaper. "They're one of the brighter spots in General Motors' overall picture." Follow the link below to read the Detroit News article.

Saturn was touted as a "different kind of car company" when General Motors Corp. debuted the brand 18 years ago with a slavish devotion to customer service, a single-minded focus on compact cars and no-haggle pricing. The fuel-efficient, pocketbook friendly cars, featuring a dent-resistant body, caught on with the public and car snobs alike. Popular Mechanics awarded Saturn a design and engineering award for manufacturing high-quality new vehicles. But then Saturn and its Spring Hill, Tennessee, country style morphed into a different version of itself. Its signature compact cars, highlighted by the breakthrough of the 1991 Saturn SL1, went stale because the company failed to introduce new models. Saturn also was hurt by GM cost-cutting and its late launch into the profitable SUV market. "They never got back to the vehicle that really made Saturn tick," said auto analyst Erich Merkle of Crowe Horwath. But a reinvention is under way. Saturn's sporty Belgium-built Astra compact has won praise. The Vue has turned out to be a solid performer for customers looking for affordable crossovers, and the 2008 Saturn Outlook was rated one of the best new family vehicles. Saturn was rated the most improved brand in customer satisfaction in a recent University of Michigan survey.


What happened? Did the future only last 3 months?

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Old 12-09-2008, 02:08 PM   #9
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

Haha...I love how these execs just blatantly lie!

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Old 12-09-2008, 02:10 PM   #10
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

>>What happened? Did the future only last 3 months?


In GM terms...yes. Future=next quarter.

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Old 12-09-2008, 03:45 PM   #11
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

http://www.autoblog.com/2008/12/09/g...-than-kill-it/

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Old 12-09-2008, 04:29 PM   #12
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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He should have also been speaking of Pontiac, GMC and Buick except for Buick being built here for exporting.

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Old 12-09-2008, 04:34 PM   #13
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

Hummer has been for sale for months.

Saturn doesn't have anything it brings to the table. All its cars except the Outlook are Opels. It's got its best lineup ever because it has nothing to do with its lineup except a few visual changes that are detrimental to the cars. Saturn has its own dealer network that costs too much money to operate. As a brand, it has never been profitable.

The Astra and coming Insignia fit in better with Pontiac than Saturn. The turbocharged versions of each car fit perfectly with Pontiac's sporty yet refined (but not to the point of BMW) focus. The 300hp AWD Insignia fits perfectly below the G8, and the 2.0L turbo Astra would fit perfectly below that competing with the Mazdaspeed3. And the great thing is, since they're in a dealership with Buick and GMC, they don't have to build anything outside of that. Whereas Saturn has to have a full line on their own. Want something more soft? Well there's a nice Buick right over here. Need something with more room, well we have GMC SUVs and Buick CUVs down over there.

Phasing out Saturn is the best thing GM could have done, it can now sell the good Opels to the right people because they're not gonna be Saturn anymore.

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Old 12-09-2008, 05:49 PM   #14
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Hummer has been for sale for months.

Saturn doesn't have anything it brings to the table. All its cars except the Outlook are Opels. It's got its best lineup ever because it has nothing to do with its lineup except a few visual changes that are detrimental to the cars. Saturn has its own dealer network that costs too much money to operate. As a brand, it has never been profitable.

The Astra and coming Insignia fit in better with Pontiac than Saturn. The turbocharged versions of each car fit perfectly with Pontiac's sporty yet refined (but not to the point of BMW) focus. The 300hp AWD Insignia fits perfectly below the G8, and the 2.0L turbo Astra would fit perfectly below that competing with the Mazdaspeed3. And the great thing is, since they're in a dealership with Buick and GMC, they don't have to build anything outside of that. Whereas Saturn has to have a full line on their own. Want something more soft? Well there's a nice Buick right over here. Need something with more room, well we have GMC SUVs and Buick CUVs down over there.

Phasing out Saturn is the best thing GM could have done, it can now sell the good Opels to the right people because they're not gonna be Saturn anymore.
Except for the people that camps out here, military people who were stationed in Europe, and older people; others dont no about Opel.

Great point on the Saturn issue.

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Old 12-09-2008, 06:17 PM   #15
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Originally Posted by FGCA_XRL View Post
Hummer has been for sale for months.

Saturn doesn't have anything it brings to the table. All its cars except the Outlook are Opels. It's got its best lineup ever because it has nothing to do with its lineup except a few visual changes that are detrimental to the cars. Saturn has its own dealer network that costs too much money to operate. As a brand, it has never been profitable.

The Astra and coming Insignia fit in better with Pontiac than Saturn. The turbocharged versions of each car fit perfectly with Pontiac's sporty yet refined (but not to the point of BMW) focus. The 300hp AWD Insignia fits perfectly below the G8, and the 2.0L turbo Astra would fit perfectly below that competing with the Mazdaspeed3. And the great thing is, since they're in a dealership with Buick and GMC, they don't have to build anything outside of that. Whereas Saturn has to have a full line on their own. Want something more soft? Well there's a nice Buick right over here. Need something with more room, well we have GMC SUVs and Buick CUVs down over there.

Phasing out Saturn is the best thing GM could have done, it can now sell the good Opels to the right people because they're not gonna be Saturn anymore.
Saturn brings me to the table... Its the only GM brand I would ever consider purchasing..

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Old 12-09-2008, 06:52 PM   #16
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Saturn brings me to the table... Its the only GM brand I would ever consider purchasing..
Exactly. I'm definitely not going to switch to a Chevy. Why go back to bad service, poor sales experience, and crooked sales techniques at my local chevy dealer. Nope. If Saturn is gone I'm done with GM for good.

Looks to me Lutz is clueless. Maybe he should talk to Saturn customers, he might learn something and explain how Buick is selling so wonderfully in North America. Oh that's right Saturn sells more cars than Buick.

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Old 12-09-2008, 07:14 PM   #17
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

I just wish the executives would be more honest about what their plans are for the GM brands that are under review. Don't tell me that Saturn sales are great and then tell me that they aren't selling enough. That GM has won awards for Saturn, brag about it, and then say "Meh, we probably could do without this brand". I just look at it as a don't spit at me and tell me it's raining kind of thing.

I would certainly hope that they don't get rid of Saturn or Pontiac. I could see getting rid of Hummer and Saab much more due to their sales.. But to completely get rid of more than that would be a terrible mistake and totally out of touch with consumers.

I believe that a lot of this stuff is speculation, pessimism, and doom and gloom talk.. But we will see. I really hope that they keep our beloved brand. If they don't they are going to lose a lot of loyal customers...

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Old 12-09-2008, 08:22 PM   #18
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Don't tell me that Saturn sales are great
LOL, it's not that hard to look at the sales figures yourself and I don't ever recall anyone saying Saturn was doing great sales-wise. Sure, they have a competitive lineup (hell, I would look at the Astra if I wanted a small car, would be in my top 3, VUE if I wanted a small SUV and definitely the Outlook for a family hauler).

As far as being out of touch with the consumer, the proof is in the pudding. Saturn sales have been lagging. If that's not indicative of consumer trends, not sure what else is.

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Old 12-09-2008, 08:49 PM   #19
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

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Exactly. I'm definitely not going to switch to a Chevy. Why go back to bad service, poor sales experience, and crooked sales techniques at my local chevy dealer. Nope. If Saturn is gone I'm done with GM for good.
When is the last time you have been in another GM dealership? I find that they people just as good if not better than Saturn dealers.

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Old 12-09-2008, 08:49 PM   #20
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Default Re: Lutz: Possible Phaseout of Saturn in the Works Well Before Congressional Review

Well all sales are down for cars, not just Saturn.

I was more trying to get across the point that the things they have been saying are very hypocritical.. Not really give specific examples.

They tell us one thing and then tell us the complete opposite. Like for example, they brag about having a competitive lineup of cars but now seem to be considering getting rid of Saturn. Doesn't make much sense at all.

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