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Old 03-17-2009, 08:59 PM   #1
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Default Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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David Barkholz from Automotive News: Steve Girsky, long-time industry consultant who is leading GM's task force, declined to name which automakers have talked to the group. He called the inquiries "informal." Girsky said in an interview today that the task force is assessing whether a spin-off could procure enough product and sell enough vehicles to make it viable for the 400 Saturn dealers now operating.

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Old 03-17-2009, 09:11 PM   #2
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

Isn't that more like 300 now?

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Old 03-17-2009, 09:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

Errmm

Are there still even 400 dealerships? With all of the closings of Saturn Dealerships recently....are there still 400 dealerships to speak of?

Just curious.

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Old 03-17-2009, 10:35 PM   #4
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

The Saturn dealerships are falling fast. I have followed this site since I started selling Saturns over a year ago. I worked for a dealer group who was one of the first to own a Saturn dealership. He repeatedly said he was committed to Saturn and the future.

Yesterday he came in and shut us down (30 day notice) and three of his other Saturn dealerships. He is leaving two of them open because he recently combined them with BPC. He told us during his meeting with Saturn, that there was not going to be a viable option for the future of Saturn. He told us that during his meetings with Saturn, there were people interested, but no one was able to get financing.

I have always tried to refrain from commenting negative, but I think the writing is on the wall. For my dealer group to close Saturn now says alot. (Considering they were on the cover of time magazine for being the best dealer group in the states not to long ago!)

If there was some sort of option out there, be it selling a different car, or some sort of experimental option, he would be all over it.

Take this for what its worth, but I am out of a job!!

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Old 03-17-2009, 10:57 PM   #5
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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Originally Posted by nomoresaturn View Post
Take this for what its worth, but I am out of a job!!
Truly sorry to hear that. I hope you can bounce back quickly with something rewarding, both monetarily and cerebrally.

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Old 03-18-2009, 07:11 AM   #6
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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Originally Posted by nomoresaturn View Post
............ I worked for a dealer group who was one of the first to own a Saturn dealership. He repeatedly said he was committed to Saturn and the future.

Yesterday he came in and shut us down (30 day notice) and three of his other Saturn dealerships. ............... For my dealer group to close Saturn now says alot. (Considering they were on the cover of time magazine for being the best dealer group in the states not to long ago!).............
Would this happen to be Bergstrom Automotive that you are referring to? I frequented the La Crosse/Onalaska facility until I sold my VUE in Jan of this year.

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Old 03-18-2009, 10:28 AM   #7
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

Lets look at this situation...

Previously we heard complaints that because Saturn was selling re-badged GM cars that GM was competing against itself.

Now Saturn will be selling competitors cars and competing against GM and GM will be losing these sales all together.

This was a bad business decision. They left an open door to their competition to strategically move in and compete against them.

It would have been in GM's best interest to shut down the Saturn dealers and not allow this to happen.

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Old 03-18-2009, 10:39 AM   #8
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

I don't think it will happen. GM doesn't want to hand over market share to yet another competitor. Call my cynical, but I think Saturn is just trying to maintain a glimmer of hope while they try to unload the existing inventory, before shutting down for good.

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Old 03-18-2009, 05:40 PM   #9
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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Lets look at this situation...

Previously we heard complaints that because Saturn was selling re-badged GM cars that GM was competing against itself.

Now Saturn will be selling competitors cars and competing against GM and GM will be losing these sales all together.

This was a bad business decision. They left an open door to their competition to strategically move in and compete against them.

It would have been in GM's best interest to shut down the Saturn dealers and not allow this to happen.

YES!! But, then they would have to pay for it. GM took the cheaper way out. I wonder how many Saturn dealers are around today. The Saturn web site location site is not up to date.

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Old 03-18-2009, 06:40 PM   #10
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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It would have been in GM's best interest to shut down the Saturn dealers and not allow this to happen.
It is my belief that GM management prefers to gamble on the notion it's cheaper to be rid of a division by attrition rather than pulling the plug as evident when closing down Oldsmobile. That way they don't have to pay out all the Saturn retailer obligations. They may very well be right, but only time will tell.


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Old 03-18-2009, 07:38 PM   #11
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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Originally Posted by nomoresaturn View Post
The Saturn dealerships are falling fast. I have followed this site since I started selling Saturns over a year ago.
Sorry you lost your job...

As for the dealerships closing, I can tell you that in Montreal (and Canada I suppose its the same) there was 5 dealers not so long ago, now there is only 2 left. A few weeks ago I want for maintenance, they told me they sold 12 cars for the entire month of February. 12 cars... I dont think it will survive long with that. The Hyunday and Toyota dealerships are probably selling that in a day or two.

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Old 03-21-2009, 02:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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He told us during his meeting with Saturn, that there was not going to be a viable option for the future of Saturn. He told us that during his meetings with Saturn, there were people interested, but no one was able to get financing.

I am sorry to hear about the loss of your job. You are in Canada, right? yes, many stores in Canada are closing unfortunately.

Here in the US there are many store still quite alive however, despite all the US closings. Around 400 stores scattered in the US from what I am told.

Your ex-boss may be right about what he said - if he is talking about Canada. But he is incorrect about Saturn's status in the US. There is positive progress being put together by the FOT members in the US. I like how he says "but no one was able to get financing" now thats funny, did they have bad credit?

There are quite a few options still left on the table and being worked on I have been told.

There is nothing we can correctly say about Saturn's final decision until it is made and it has not been made yet. We will know when it is said by Saturn themselves. Until then, Saturn is still here.

Again, sorry you lost your job, I hope that you gained valuable experience in the short time you were with Saturn and wish you good luck.

...
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Old 03-21-2009, 05:16 PM   #13
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

marx, regarding your quote "I like how he says "but no one was able to get financing" now thats funny, did they have bad credit?" I believe the poster was refering to potential Saturn investors. The credit and bond markets are still extremely tight, this is no surprise to anyone. One of the biggest hurdles in front of a spinoff is finding an interested party who also has ready access to cash. Lets keep our fingers crossed.

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Old 03-21-2009, 05:32 PM   #14
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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marx, regarding your quote "I like how he says "but no one was able to get financing" now thats funny, did they have bad credit?" I believe the poster was refering to potential Saturn investors. The credit and bond markets are still extremely tight, this is no surprise to anyone. One of the biggest hurdles in front of a spinoff is finding an interested party who also has ready access to cash. Lets keep our fingers crossed.
You read right, I meant what I said and it was meant to be as ridiculous as the original statement. To blanketly say that about everyone interested in investing or working with Saturn is too much insinuation and simply not true. It is obvious that the OP's manager was under duress when he told his employees these things. Again, I do not know if this occurred in Canada or the US, the OP did not say. You are right on the money noting the current world economic situation, but bigger companies were born during tougher times.

Yes, let's keep our fingers crossed and let's have all the patience we need to take until an official determination is officially announced from Saturn themselves.

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Old 03-24-2009, 04:37 AM   #15
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

I hope against all hope that Saturn finds a way to continue separate from GM. Saturn sort of started that way, loosely connected with GM, but unique in so many of its approaches. I remember the day I bought my 95 SW2 - the easiest and most relaxed big purchase I ever made, and just as tough and reliable a car as my earlier Toyotas It's still running fine.

I went in to pick up some touch-up paint at my local Saturn dealership last week - the last week my local dealership would be open - and what a sad day that was. Cars backed up for last minute maintenance and staff either despairing over their future or anxious about their new jobs elsewhere. I'm so sorry to "NoMoreSaturn" about losing his job.

I'm old enough to really miss the days when we had unique and interesting alternatives in American cars - Studebaker, AMC (well, with some reservations), Packard, Kaiser, Hudson, Crosley.... In a way, Saturn was a return to that special "other" brand outside the "Big 3". I so hope they can stay there...somehow.

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Old 03-24-2009, 08:05 AM   #16
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

Yes, its not easy to carry on these days but let's all remember that some good and talented folks are doing their best to keep the Saturn smile on the remaining retailer's faces. Sadly, it really is a perfect storm of economic barriers to the continuation of the Saturn brand and in any other time, things would be far different. Let's remain hopeful and see what news comes our way in a few weeks.

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Old 03-27-2009, 11:10 AM   #17
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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Your ex-boss may be right about what he said - if he is talking about Canada. But he is incorrect about Saturn's status in the US.
I can confirm that my dealer which is West-Island Saturn in Montreal is moving next door within the Chevrolet dealership. The Saturn building is a 10 year lease and I doubt the owner will take this long, so they are moving everything including service and soon sales to the Chevrolet dealership.

They are not ceasing to exist yet since its probably a high selling Saturn dealership by Saturn's standard, but who knows.

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Old 03-27-2009, 11:56 AM   #18
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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I can confirm that my dealer which is West-Island Saturn in Montreal is moving next door within the Chevrolet dealership. The Saturn building is a 10 year lease and I doubt the owner will take this long, so they are moving everything including service and soon sales to the Chevrolet dealership.

They are not ceasing to exist yet since its probably a high selling Saturn dealership by Saturn's standard, but who knows.

Frankski
Is this permanent ?

There are a few empty buildings of closed dealerships around the west-island on Sources or St. john they could be buying those cheap
and they are close to the mothership.

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Old 03-27-2009, 09:46 PM   #19
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Default Re: Saturn Approached by GM Competitors About Selling Cars Under the Saturn Brand

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You read right, I meant what I said and it was meant to be as ridiculous as the original statement. To blanketly say that about everyone interested in investing or working with Saturn is too much insinuation and simply not true. It is obvious that the OP's manager was under duress when he told his employees these things. Again, I do not know if this occurred in Canada or the US, the OP did not say. You are right on the money noting the current world economic situation, but bigger companies were born during tougher times.

Yes, let's keep our fingers crossed and let's have all the patience we need to take until an official determination is officially announced from Saturn themselves.
What other bigger company(s) here was born under similar times like this.
Credit is tight for the regular consumer too plus alot of people are still concerned about there jobs. This all adds up to making hard for all but the stronger companies to survive.

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Old 03-28-2009, 06:29 AM   #20
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What other bigger company(s) here was born under similar times like this.
Credit is tight for the regular consumer too plus alot of people are still concerned about there jobs. This all adds up to making hard for all but the stronger companies to survive.

I am so glad that you asked. Here is the link, you will be surprised that these companies were born in such times, much worse times than we are going through right now.

http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2009/...smb/index.html

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