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This is disappointing news, especially considering GM's need for world-class products. Not only was the Zeta poised to fill a gaping hole (or several holes!) in GM's product lineup but it also symbolized what appeared to be a great new philosophy/mentality at GM.

One has to wonder how this will affect their product offering in the mid- to long-term. Hopefully it's not a short-term fix just to appease Wall Street...
 

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Fformula88 said:
RWD vehicle, nostalgia styling... I got it! They are planning on reintroducing the Chevette on the kappa chassis! :leaving:
You are Evil. :devil:
 

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Fformula88 said:
RWD vehicle, nostalgia styling... I got it! They are planning on reintroducing the Chevette on the kappa chassis! :leaving:
Man, would you keep it on the down low!?!?!? ;)

You REALLY don't want to start giving Chevy and Pontiac ideas like that... they are liable to take you seriously. :lol:
 

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solsticeman said:
Man, would you keep it on the down low!?!?!? ;)
Harsh S-man. Harsh. :(

:lol: :lol:

You REALLY don't want to start giving Chevy and Pontiac ideas like that... they are liable to take you seriously. :lol:
Maybe it is in the works already. Where do you think the "Sunfire replacement on a Kappa Chassis" rumors came from? ;)
 

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Fformula88 said:
Harsh S-man. Harsh. :(

:lol: :lol:



Maybe it is in the works already. Where do you think the "Sunfire replacement on a Kappa Chassis" rumors came from? ;)
Hey, i would take the Canadian Pursuit (Cobalt in Pontiac trim) if we could get it. BTW if you want a deal on a car the Sunfire (and Cavalier) are carrying a $4500 rebate right now. That's not chump change.
 

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solsticeman said:
FF88 - you're right, see edit. Was typing stream of conscience, and overreacted.
Don't sweat it S-man! I knew your intent with it! ;)

However, it does make me wonder about that "Super Moderator" title... :lol: J/K of course S-man. Your doing a fabulous job! :thumbs:
 

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Fformula88 said:
Don't sweat it S-man! I knew your intent with it! ;)

However, it does make me wonder about that "Super Moderator" title... :lol: J/K of course S-man. Your doing a fabulous job! :thumbs:
:agree: Now if we could just pass the hat and get Solsticeman off that dial-up and onto dsl or cable. Hey, solsticeman, do you have to turn that crank on the side to get the operator first. :lol: one ringy-dingy, two ringy-dingy
 

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Not sure passing the hat would help.

Too far away from the switcher for DSL. Phone company has told me there are no plans for a new switcher any closer, therefore my house will never get DSL.

Cable, believe it or not, does not go down my street. There's prolly 0.05% of the streets in the counties from Ingham to Wyandotte, and from Toledo to Flint in SE michigan that don't have cable - and I am on one of them!!! :brentil:

Satellite it about $90 a month :brentil: :mad:

Or, I could place a server in my back yard, lease server space to Troy, pay for a T3 line, and I'd be in like Flint. :thumbs:

Edit: Now everyone is going to see if that is enough information to figure out where I live, huh?
 

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Did anyone else catch the not so little glib on talk radio this AM? GM has announced on dumping Pontiac and Buick by 2008 if sales don't inprove. The radio DJ's dribbled on discussing Pontiac, which they obviously know nothing about. Its amazing how a radio station can get two or three people together and talk trash and make the average listener believe everything they say!
 

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PAS22 said:
Did anyone else catch the not so little glib on talk radio this AM? GM has announced on dumping Pontiac and Buick by 2008 if sales don't inprove. The radio DJ's dribbled on discussing Pontiac, which they obviously know nothing about. Its amazing how a radio station can get two or three people together and talk trash and make the average listener believe everything they say!
Got to get that password thing fixed PAS22, Yesterday's or the day before news was Lutz saying that if divisions did'nt improve some might get the ax. TODAY's news reverses that and clarifies that if a division is in trouble the number of offerings by that division might get trimmed.
GM says it won't phase out a brand

Exec calms dealers after comments by Lutz, but says slow sellers may be axed.

By Ed Garsten / The Detroit News







General Motors Corp.'s top sales executive assured alarmed dealers Thursday that the automaker has no plans to kill one of its U.S. brands a day after Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said GM could "phase out" some struggling nameplates if sales continue to fall.

"We are not discussing or planning the elimination of any of our brands," Mark LaNeve, GM's sales and marketing chief for North America, told dealers in an e-mail Thursday. "On the contrary, we're investing more heavily than ever on new products and marketing programs."

GM's U.S. sales and market share have dropped sharply this year, prompting a new round of cost reductions and speculation among analysts that one of its eight North American brands -- Oldsmobile is already being phased out -- will be dropped. Though they remain profitable, Buick and Pontiac, which have seen sales steadily drop for 20 years, have been mentioned as candidates.

Lutz said Wednesday that if "damaged brands" such as Buick and Pontiac failed to achieve sales targets, "then we would have to take a look at a phase-out."

Lutz added: "I hope we don't have to do that. What we've got to do is keep the brands we've got."

Along with Buick and Pontiac, GM's U.S. brands include Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC, Hummer, Saab and Saturn.

LaNeve told The Detroit News Thursday that Lutz's comments were "absolutely misinterpreted" by the press.

"It's important to set the record straight," LaNeve said. "GM is investing in all of its brands."

While LaNeve said there are no plans to drop a division, he said GM will slim down a brand's offerings if necessary to focus marketing efforts and other costs on promising products.

"If there has to be four or five (models) ... as opposed to nine or 10, I'll make that trade-off," he said.

LaNeve promised the company would "reignite Pontiac's muscular design and street credibility" and build Buick as a brand with vehicles that are the "quietest and highest-quality."

Dealers welcomed LaNeve's memo, but it may not be enough to stem the shock of Lutz's remarks.

"They got dealers scared to death," said Phil Shostack, sales manager at Jim Fresard Pontiac-Buick in Royal Oak. "It sent shockwaves. We're spending gobs of money (to expand), and to lose a franchise? Are you kidding?"

Rochester Hills Buick-Pontiac dealer Russ Shelton called Lutz's remarks "extremely upsetting" since he's also contemplating an expansion.

"Why did (Lutz's comments) happen in the first place?" he asked.

GM's U.S. market share has dropped from 45 percent in 1980 to 27.3 percent last year, and it has been forced to close several North American assembly plants. Despite a major overhaul in the 1990s, it was forced to drop Oldsmobile.

Pontiac sales dropped to 474,179 last year, well below the nearly 800,000 units it sold 20 years ago, and sales of Buick vehicles have fallen from a high of 941,000 in 1984 to 309,639 units last year.

Several new GM models have struggled, and the automaker has been forced to cut production to reduce inventories.

"Most alarming for Pontiac -- although their new models created hype, they still require a lot of incentives to keep them moving," Edmunds.com sales analyst Jesse Toprak said. "The G6 (sedan) has been out only 6 months and already has over $3,600 per unit in incentives on it. That's a lot."

J.D. Power and Associates sales analyst Jeff Brodoski said a recent analysis by the market research firm doesn't support a move by GM to excise any brands.

"We have all the GM brands going strong in our forecasts," said Brodoski. "A lot of them are adding vehicles, and we still see a lot of product activity."

The slow sales start by some of GM's newly launched vehicles reflects an oversaturated marketplace, Brodoski said. By the end of the year there will be about 300 different vehicles available in the United States, compared with about 220 five years ago, he said.

Brodoski said coupe and convertible versions of the Pontiac G6, and the new two-seat convertible Solstice, will help Pontiac in the near term.

But analyst Erich Merkle at IRN Inc. in Grand Rapids said GM "has far too many divisions to support right now with their current resources."

GM warned last week it will report a first-quarter loss and that 2005 profits will fall as much as 80 percent.

Jim McTevia, chairman of Eastpointe corporate turnaround specialists McTevia and Associates, believes Pontiac and Buick have about run their course despite new models, and that given GM's sinking financial fortunes, the automaker needs to adjust its vehicle portfolio to match the needs of a changing marketplace.

http://www.detnews.com/2005/autosin.../A01-128984.htm
 

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achieftain said:
Got to get that password thing fixed PAS22, Yesterday's or the day before news was Lutz saying that if divisions did'nt improve some might get the ax. TODAY's news reverses that and clarifies that if a division is in trouble the number of offerings by that division might get trimmed.
GM says it won't phase out a brand

Exec calms dealers after comments by Lutz, but says slow sellers may be axed.

By Ed Garsten / The Detroit News


Thanks for the post, I hadn't seen this article, and it explains the situation far better than the diatrab I heard this morning. PS: We are working in the logging on issue.
 

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To be honest with you, I have never understood Pontiac's role in the world. Chevy is for regular guys. Buick is when you were ready to move up in the world and really taste luxury. Cadillac was for the "rich" people. (OK, I'm oversimplifying.)

The idea of a separate "performance division" in Pontiac is illogical. Every division needs performance models to enhance the image of its model lineup. Pontiac has always had a mix of cars, not performance only. They have always marketed toward younger drivers, but never attracted a mostly younger group? What is Pontiac really supposed to do? In other words, any Pontiac made could be sold as either a Chevy for regular guys or a Buick, going upscale.

Unless you want a division for sports cars, muscle cars and luxury cars only, then why Pontiac? Because you know Chevy, Buick and Cadillac will always build their own performance cars.

What role Pontiac?
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
jimbo said:
What role Pontiac?
Generally thought to be performance or "budget performance" division. Poor man's BMW I guess is what they are after but not really there yet.
 

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solsticeman said:
Not sure passing the hat would help.

Too far away from the switcher for DSL. Phone company has told me there are no plans for a new switcher any closer, therefore my house will never get DSL.

Cable, believe it or not, does not go down my street. There's prolly 0.05% of the streets in the counties from Ingham to Wyandotte, and from Toledo to Flint in SE michigan that don't have cable - and I am on one of them!!! :brentil:

Satellite it about $90 a month :brentil: :mad:

Or, I could place a server in my back yard, lease server space to Troy, pay for a T3 line, and I'd be in like Flint. :thumbs:

Edit: Now everyone is going to see if that is enough information to figure out where I live, huh?

I apologize for the off topic post in advance.

Don't feel alone S-Man. I am on dial up too from home. I miss the high speed connection I use at work, um, when I am on break. :leaving:

I too don't have DSL available. The problem around here is Verizon, who just won't upgrade their equipment to handle DSL. I am in a well populated suburb (regular neighborhood of ranch houses, built 40 years ago). My uncle works for Verizon, and he says they just don't want to spend the money in this area. Instead, they have all their extra workers installing fiber optics in Westchester county instead, which is a rich suburb of New York City.

I could get cable, but I don't feel like being raped any more by Adelphia Cable. They already eat $75 a month out of my wallet for Digital TV (although I may switch to DirecTV Satelite because I can get more Cubs games). Cable internet would be an additional $40 bucks! For that price, I can be patient with slow load times!
 

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jimbo said:
What role Pontiac?
Pontiac's mission statement, created in 1981 and supposedly followed today: (per Lynn Myers, who used to be the Pontiac General Manager a few years ago).

"Pontiac is a company known for innovative design and engineering that results in exciting products with outstanding performance and roadability." Then, she boils that down to "Driving Excitement"

I get this from "75 Years of Pontiac" which was an officially authorized history of the division. From reading that book, it seems aparent that Pontiac has historically been positioned as being above Chevrolet in the GM hierarchy by generally offering more features and performance.

So as I see it, Pontiac is not meant to be all things to all people, but to offer not only a better driving experience then the average plain jane Chevrolet, but maybe a nicer cabin, a few more features, etc.
 

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Ff88,

I read the Pontiac mission statement & subsequent "driving excitement". Now I wonder if this is an out-dated concept sinced every car company in the world is trying to sell at least a portion of its model line-up with driving excitement.

Do you see a clear role for Pontiac and do you think the Division is clearly needed? Especially now when it seems GM is trying to position Buick against BMW. Or do they mean Buick gets BMW's image without the BMW performance? Because I think BMWs image relies on its performance. Thinking "M" cars here.
 

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I would think that the NEW Saturn would be propel to be the poor mans BMW and do away with Buick and Pontiac, specially since Saturn has the dealer reputation of a great experience and customer friendly atmosphere. The problem though is Honda, Toyota, etc.. what devision is going to take them on, certainly not Chevy unless they upgrade the interior to match the quality of those others.
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
I think Saturn has a longer way to go than Pontiac. All they have is this customer service experience thing, their products have been pretty poorly thought of. Getting to upscale is a long hill to climb for them.
 

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mceb said:
I think Saturn has a longer way to go than Pontiac. All they have is this customer service experience thing, their products have been pretty poorly thought of. Getting to upscale is a long hill to climb for them.
That is partially true but if Saturn executes with products like the SKY and follows through with others just as good then, the combination of great customer buying experience couple with new great cars and people will come to buy for sure.
 
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