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More Answers to Solstice Questions

Lori Queen speaks again, but she didn't address any of my concerns. Oh well.

Lori Queen said:
By Lori Queen
GM Vehicle Line Executive - Small Cars

First, let me just say wow! I can feel the excitement and pent-up demand for the Solstice. Second, let me give you my heartfelt thanks for your candor. Your reservations about whether we’ll come through for all of you –- and for GM –- clearly came across as well as your strong hope that we’ll exceed everyone’s expectations. I’m confident we will –- or least I’ll go down trying!

Let me respond to some common themes:

I saw lots of questions regarding powertrains and the desire for extra horses. As many of you probably know, the Ecotec is a great powertrain, with lots of family members, and it’s perfect for this car. Solstice drivers will have 177 hp and 166 ft. lb of torque. Combine that with an Aisin five-speed manual transmission and, well, you have a fun roadster to throw around the curves. I know because I’ve been driving my Solstice around Detroit. (You can imagine the looks I’m getting! My three teenagers agree –- it’s really cool.). For those of you who are asking for an automatic transmission – look for one next spring.

As far as the product development cycle -– it will be complete in a record 27 months. A typical ground-up, all-new design and build process can take much longer. Part of our new process requires stringent testing and a lot of driving of very early non-saleable cars. The first cars that are the result of our tested, validated and perfected process will be those first
1000 orders.

We will be sure to let you know when we are in production. I'm glad nearly all of you agreed with us that quality is an over-riding goal.

Hope that helps. Keep sending us what you think. We love hearing from you. More again later.
 

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At least we know it's going to have 177HP officially, not the 170HP that had been floating around.
 

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AARGGGH... The woman comes back with a story to "reassure" us and she has to make the point that it's such a good car that SHE loves driving HERS all over Detroit. Must be nice that all these people complain to her about not being able to get one on time an she comes back telling us about how she got hers early.
 

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auto trans

With Lori's newest blog was this statement
For those of you who are asking for an automatic transmission – look for one next spring
 

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dori-san said:
Note: she stated that their goal is to get the first 1000 delivered by OCTOBER! I sure hope they can speed that up, because I'm definitely not one of the thousand and I'm really hoping I'll have mine around the time of my birthday (Sept. 15). So if they're not giving out any of the others until all first 1000 are out, and that doesn't happen until Oct. that means it'll be December-ish until they get around to mine probably. Certainly not the proper time to get a convertible. I sure hope they can be quicker than that or I'm going to be quite irked. Godspeed GM, Godspeed!
You are in Florida! You can cruise 11 months out of the year!
 

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Seems the original interesting text is difficult to find on the web, so her she is . . . . . .



The Buck Stops Here
By Lori Queen
GM Vehicle Line Executive - Small Cars
May-24-2005

Let me start by translating for you what my title means: I run the team that is responsible for the Solstice program. I work for Bob Lutz . . . and the buck does indeed stop here!

The reason for my post is to answer a few questions, namely, are we listening? Of course we are . . . I know I am.

My team and I have seen the emails and posts from Solstice fans. We’re pleased there’s so much passion behind the launch of this new Pontiac – we share your enthusiasm. Let me respond to some of the concerns I’ve read:
First, we’ve said that production begins this summer –- and it will. We’re currently building pre-production models at our assembly plant in Wilmington, Delaware. The commitment is to deliver all “First 1,000” cars by the end of October. Our goal is for delivery to begin by late summer, perhaps sooner. However, when Pontiac announced its early order program on the Apprentice we did so to better gauge interest. We were blown away that the first 1,000 vehicles sold out in 41 minutes. We now have more than 8,000 orders. The roadster segment is very small –- about 100,000 units a year. This incredible interest means that once consumers have their cars, we’ll have gone from zero to nearly 10 percent of the roadster market in no time.

We know our new owners will want their vehicles to be dynamically sound, with superb road manners to match their good looks. Every GM vehicle launch is subject to many stringent quality tests – both at the plant and in the vehicle itself. Some of the rumors we’ve seen relate to these tests. The testing and slow “ramp-up” –- how quickly we go from building a handful of cars a day to full production -– ensures that we’re selling the highest quality vehicles. It’s no accident that last week J.D. Power reported that GM led the industry in manufacturing quality for the fourth straight year. Based on this track record, we believe that future Solstice owners want us to take this kind of care with their vehicles, too.

These extensive quality checks are why some have said they’ve noticed a few Solstices on the road. They weren’t seeing things –- we do have cars being driven by GM engineers across the country. We rigorously drive and test these early vehicles to confirm that they meet our quality expectations.

Will the first 1,000 cars really be the first 1,000? Absolutely. We said we would deliver the first 1,000 retail cars to these lucky few, and that’s the plan. These engineering vehicles will never make it to dealers. Some of these vehicles, after we've driven them hard, may be brought up to production standards and sold at auction, similar to other vehicle programs, but it would be well after the first 1,000 cars are delivered. This is the way vehicle programs work. We shake down the cars so our
customers don’t have to.

I know Pontiac marketing folks have plans to continue communicating with their new buyers throughout the summer and fall. And, if you’re one of the First 1,000, you’ve probably heard from them by now.

Keep your comments coming. The team likes to know what you’re thinking. Meanwhile, we’ll keep working to bring the best-looking and highest-quality roadster to market –- a car we’ll be proud to sell and our customers will be thrilled to own.

More Answers to Solstice Questions
By Lori Queen
GM Vehicle Line Executive - Small Cars
May-26-2005

First, let me just say wow! I can feel the excitement and pent-up demand for the Solstice. Second, let me give you my heartfelt thanks for your candor. Your reservations about whether we’ll come through for all of you –- and for GM –- clearly came across as well as your strong hope that we’ll exceed everyone’s expectations. I’m confident we will –- or least I’ll go down trying!

Let me respond to some common themes:

I saw lots of questions regarding powertrains and the desire for extra horses. As many of you probably know, the Ecotec is a great powertrain, with lots of family members, and it’s perfect for this car. Solstice drivers will have 177 hp and 166 ft. lb of torque. Combine that with an Aisin five-speed manual transmission and, well, you have a fun roadster to throw around the curves. I know because I’ve been driving my Solstice around Detroit. (You can imagine the looks I’m getting! My three teenagers agree –- it’s really cool.). For those of you who are asking for an automatic transmission – look for one next spring.

As far as the product development cycle -– it will be complete in a record 27 months. A typical ground-up, all-new design and build process can take much longer. Part of our new process requires stringent testing and a lot of driving of very early non-saleable cars. The first cars that are the result of our tested, validated and perfected process will be those first 1000 orders.

We will be sure to let you know when we are in production. I'm glad nearly all of you agreed with us that quality is an over-riding goal.

Hope that helps. Keep sending us what you think. We love hearing from you. More again later.
 

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Interesting reading. And this definitely sets the record for longest thread revival.
 
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