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Old 07-23-2006, 12:23 PM   #1
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak announcement?

Re: Jill Lajdziak: She was on Autoline Detroit this a.m. with Tony Swan from Car & Driver and some hambone from Motor Trend. Still the same boilerplate about an expanded "portfolio" and sharing the "global resources" of GM. She was well spoken and mentioned the new ad campaign and the major roll out of it in Sept.
Additionally Saturn sales are not off nearly as much as others apparently and that horrible ION has been good for over 100,000 RETAIL sales, not fleet sales.
Of course Tony Swan and the other hack claimed that all the "innovation" that Saturn was known for and is part of their core philosophy now was going away : Lost foam casting [how ? this is still used on the Ecotec MR. SWAN], polymer, space frame, etc. She handled it well by claiming that all that was true but that what their research had discovered was that Saturn did not equal polymer, but innovation and of course the tie in with Opel would mean getting the best interiors and road dynamics, some things they had not been known for.
And of course they had to slag on the ION.
Too bad she didn't throw it back in Swan's face that the ION Car & Driver loved to hate so much served them quite well in their long term, 40,000 mile test.And with no problems, either.
She did admit that a center IP was more in the realm of a "niche" product idea rather than a volume one and suggested it might have been a mistake. Of course the "journalists" had to mention that it "bothered" them. Not that it actually WORKS. They all seemed to admit that it was a polarizing idea for a "bread and butter" car. As well as all the "busy-ness" of the interior pieces that left the passenger compartment cold and sort of alienating.
She looked good and has her points on tap. Pretty unflappable.
I am more concerned with the spokeshole for GM suggesting at the new Opel Corsa unveiling that : "It wasn't designed with the US in mind, but if gas prices keep rising, the NEXT GENERATION will be [caps, mine]. When are they going to get a clue ??? With that sort of short sighted thinking, will there even be enough of a GM left in a few years to HAVE a Saturn division?????
Ms Lajdziak did quite well. Nice to see her in a face to face with the guys who love to hate Saturn. A hostile audience, no doubt. Arrogant dinks.
There have been complaints of not enough Skys being available for test drives or for sale as all 12,000 have been pre sold and that they have a 0 day inventory on them.
No big announcements, just some positive spin on stuff and most of it what's been heard before.
Those were some of the high points. Apparently on the Internet there will be more of the interview. According to the host John McElroy, they were going to continue the discussion after the show and keep the cameras on, so head's up. Don't know when this plays on Speed Channel again. Is it possible to get a transcript ? Charlie ?
This was the best I could do. Sorry, I didn't think to take notes but it came on at 5:30 a.m. Pacific Time and my eyes were barely focused.

Last edited by Citation84; 07-23-2006 at 12:28 PM..

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Old 07-23-2006, 09:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

If you have Real Player you can watch it here. http://www.autolinedetroit.tv/#

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Old 07-24-2006, 06:52 AM   #3
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

This (http://www.autolinedetroit.tv/autoli...hp?stream=1025) is the actual link to the stream. Tony Swan and Frank Markus tried so hard to get Jill frazzled, but to no avail. Good thing I'm not President of Saturn, I'd have punched both of them.

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Old 07-24-2006, 08:07 AM   #4
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by K-1
Good thing I'm not President of Saturn,
Jill isn't the president eather, her title is General Manager Saturn sales, service, and marketing.

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Old 07-24-2006, 08:23 AM   #5
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by red96
Jill isn't the president eather, her title is General Manager Saturn sales, service, and marketing.
Actually, her official title is just "General Manager" of Saturn (she was Vice-president Saturn sales, service & marketing), but that's beside the point. She's an influential public figure who should have laid the smack down on those two dimwits.

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Old 07-24-2006, 08:51 AM   #6
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Thanks for the link. My memory wasn't so fresh by the afternoon and I may have [and probably did] get a lot of details wrong.
She really handled herself well.
Thanks for putting this in it's own topic, Charlie.Wasn't sure it would have been a duplicate topic, so posted it elsewhere.Was certain someone else had posted the news.
Glad I checked to see if it was on . A lot of times the show is preempted by auto racing and can't find it on the schedule any other time that I am at home to see it. It was treat to see her handle those two.

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Old 07-24-2006, 02:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by K-1
Actually, her official title is just "General Manager" of Saturn (she was Vice-president Saturn sales, service & marketing), but that's beside the point. She's an influential public figure who should have laid the smack down on those two dimwits.

It really doesnít matter but I donít want anyone to think is she is involved in running Spring Hill or any other manufacturing plant. She is sale, and marketing.

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Old 07-24-2006, 04:42 PM   #8
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Inappropriate post deleted by administrator.

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Old 07-24-2006, 06:06 PM   #9
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by K-1
This (http://www.autolinedetroit.tv/autoli...hp?stream=1025) is the actual link to the stream. Tony Swan and Frank Markus tried so hard to get Jill frazzled, but to no avail. Good thing I'm not President of Saturn, I'd have punched both of them.
I think McElroy and Markus were two trying to frazzle her. They did ask the right questions, and say the right things. I can't disaggree with anyting they said, but they were being quite smug about it. They had the right ideas, but a pissy attitude. Jill handled it very well.

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Old 07-24-2006, 08:03 PM   #10
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uzzy
I think McElroy and Markus were two trying to frazzle her. They did ask the right questions, and say the right things. I can't disaggree with anyting they said, but they were being quite smug about it. They had the right ideas, but a pissy attitude. Jill handled it very well.
It was the constant interrupting that really bothered me. If you're going to ask a question, at least wait for a complete answer before blabbing again just to hear yourself speak.

Plus, get your facts straight people, lost foam casting is basically commonplace now for aluminum engines. It didn't die with the 1.9L.

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Old 07-25-2006, 08:45 AM   #11
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by K-1
It was the constant interrupting that really bothered me. If you're going to ask a question, at least wait for a complete answer before blabbing again just to hear yourself speak.

Plus, get your facts straight people, lost foam casting is basically commonplace now for aluminum engines. It didn't die with the 1.9L.
Thought so, at least in the case of the Ecotec.Wasn't sure about the others.
That's the format of these shows whether it's Nancy Grace or Autoline Detroit.
They're less about what the guest has to say, but about making the show and host look good. I thought McElroy was reasonable though. He's always respectful to his guests it seems.Would have liked to see the guy from AutoBlog on there rather than anyone from Motor Trend. They lost their credibility years ago.

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Old 07-25-2006, 08:51 AM   #12
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by K-1
Actually, her official title is just "General Manager" of Saturn (she was Vice-president Saturn sales, service & marketing), but that's beside the point. She's an influential public figure who should have laid the smack down on those two dimwits.
That's what she said. And GM runs Spring Hill manufacturing now as it does all it's plants. General Manager of the Saturn Division she should have said.Like a General Manager of Buick or Pontiac.Still a position of note and the "face" of the company. Anyone know what the general mgr. of Pontiac looks like ?? She's been an integral part of Saturn from the beginning and that gives her a lot of credibility. Who else is left from the beginning period ??

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Old 07-25-2006, 09:10 AM   #13
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citation84
Who else is left from the beginning period ??
Nobody, wolfman just retired

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Old 07-25-2006, 12:59 PM   #14
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citation84
Who else is left from the beginning period ??
Ya, Annette Clayton is now with Dell.

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Old 07-26-2006, 09:53 AM   #15
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Is that IT ??? Of course it has been 20 years since it's first development and people do move on....... Wonder how many originals bailed after the decision to absorb Saturn more fully into GM....

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Old 07-26-2006, 04:15 PM   #16
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Those guys tried their best to rattle her, and it didn't work. I was impressed by her performance.

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Old 07-26-2006, 04:24 PM   #17
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citation84
Wonder how many originals bailed after the decision to absorb Saturn more fully into GM....
Not many left on their own terms, most were asked/told to leave or find other positions within the corporation.

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Old 07-26-2006, 05:54 PM   #18
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak announcement?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citation84
Of course Tony Swan and the other hack claimed that all the "innovation" that Saturn was known for and is part of their core philosophy now was going away : Lost foam casting [how ? this is still used on the Ecotec MR. SWAN], polymer, space frame, etc. She handled it well by claiming that all that was true but that what their research had discovered was that Saturn did not equal polymer, but innovation and of course the tie in with Opel would mean getting the best interiors and road dynamics, some things they had not been known for.
Of course she can't speak the truth, or she'll lose her six figure job! So, she's got to toe the company line and spout off whatever BS they use to sugar coat their cost cutting moves.

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Old 07-27-2006, 09:04 AM   #19
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

Quote:
Originally Posted by red96
Not many left on their own terms, most were asked/told to leave or find other positions within the corporation.
Pretty sad.One day someone is going to chronicle the story in a really good book on Saturn. There were a couple on it's "success" [Charlie has the link available] and how it came to be, but the story is still unfolding.
I know it's all in here @ the fan's site and could only be told by an objective reporter without the unfounded skepticism of most automotive writers.But a writer with objectivity rather than cynicism would be hard to find.But it would be a valuable automotive history book. It could even be another "What went wrong with GM" book as it applies to Saturn, so long as it told the actual story. Some of these books read like an Ann Rule true crime story and I think there is enough here to be a real page turner should someone take on the project.
VT, yes, I think Jill is putting her best face on it, but can't help but think she really still believes in what she's doing and still believes in the product.There are a lot of questionable decisions made by people higher up than she is, I don't think she can be faulted for trying to keep her job. Look at where any one of us works; if you listened to what people said about everyone else not doing their jobs, how stupid mgmt is and what cheapskates the owners are, it would be surprising that ANYTHING got done !!! If it came down to walking away or adapting, or really looking more deeply into what's going on and trying to find the upside of it rather than quitting, most of us would do the same. She's one woman in a gigantic organization. SHE will not change anything, but she's got a fresh wide open friendly honest face and that's a good image for Saturn.She's also well spoken and smart and a believer, I'd say she was an asset rather than a "traitor" to the cause.

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Old 07-27-2006, 03:41 PM   #20
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Default Re: Jill Lajdziak on AutoLine Detroit

I think Jill has done a fine job despite the ďLĒ car launch that was a disaster. Itís not easy when everyone is throwing stone and youíre an easy target.
The bottom line was Saturn wasnít making any money for GM and changes needed to be made. I guess now only time will tell.

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