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    GM kills Saturn

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    GM kills Saturn

    Postby SandRider » 01 Oct 2009 08:48

    The American Dream wakes up, cranky & alone.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/01/busin ... to.html?bl

    G.M. to Close Saturn After Deal Fails


    By NICK BUNKLEY and BILL VLASIC
    Published: September 30, 2009

    DETROIT — General Motors said Wednesday that it would shut down its Saturn division by next year after Roger Penske abruptly cut off talks to acquire the brand.

    Roger Penske pulled his company's bid to buy G.M.'s Saturn division.


    The Saturn dealer in Lake Barrington, Ill., closed this spring. Saturn’s 350 dealerships across the United States will close their doors, but G.M. said it planned to honor warranties.

    The Penske Automotive Group said it could not proceed with the deal because another auto manufacturer, which it did not identify, said it would not build vehicles to be distributed under the Saturn brand name.

    The decision by Penske Automotive stunned G.M. and Saturn dealers, who had hailed Mr. Penske, who has built a track record of successful turnarounds, as the savior of the brand that G.M. was forced to sell as part of its government-financed bankruptcy reorganization.

    “Today’s disappointing news comes at a time when we’d hoped for a successful launch of the Saturn brand into a new chapter,” G.M.’s chief executive, Fritz Henderson, said in a statement. “We will be working closely with our dealers to ensure Saturn customers are cared for as we transition them to other G.M. dealers in the months ahead.”

    There were no indications that the negotiations — first announced in June — were faltering.

    But Penske Automotive said that an agreement with a potential manufacturer of future Saturn products had been rejected by that company’s board. Penske Automotive declined to name the company, but people familiar with the transaction said that the Renault-Nissan alliance had been involved in discussions.

    G.M. had agreed, under its proposed deal with Penske, to continue supplying Saturn with three vehicles through 2011. Penske Automotive said that it could not acquire Saturn without a deal in place for the supply of future models.

    “Without that agreement, the company has determined that the risks and uncertainties related to the availability of future products prohibit the company from moving forward with this transaction,” Penske Automotive said in a statement. Thomas Pyden, a G.M. spokesman, said there were no plans by the automaker to seek other buyers for the Saturn division, which was created in 1985 to compete against the tide of small, fuel-efficient Japanese sedans that had become popular with American consumers.

    Saturn’s 350 dealerships across the United States will close because of the development. The Saturn stores are known for their no-haggle, low-pressure sales approach and focus on customer service. None of the stores sells vehicles made by another G.M. brand.

    Saturn dealers said Wednesday that they were blindsided by the news of Penske Automotive’s reversal.

    “We’re all stunned,” said Mary McHugh, an executive with Saturn of Schaumberg near Chicago. “We didn’t get any communication from Saturn. We just heard it on the news.”

    Under the proposed deal with Penske Automotive, the dealers were to continue selling three vehicles: the Aura sedan, Outlook crossover vehicle and Vue sport utility vehicle. Two models, the Astra compact car and Sky convertible, were being discontinued. Penske Automotive had already sent the dealerships new two-year franchise agreements to sign.

    G.M., with the Penske deal now off the table, said it planned to stop building all Saturn models at the end of the 2009 model year, meaning almost immediately. Sales of the brand were down 58 percent this year, through August.

    Penske Automotive, which owns a chain of dealerships and already distributes Daimler’s Smart car brand in the United States, had been in exclusive talks with G.M. for Saturn since June, beating out proposals from several other bidders, including a private equity firm tied to a Saturn dealer in Oklahoma.

    Auto analysts had predicted that Penske Automotive could succeed in selling Saturns where G.M. had failed, mostly because of Mr. Penske’s reputation. The 72-year-old former race car driver is considered one of the savviest businessmen in the industry, and a specialist in turning around troubled automotive operations.

    But Mr. Penske’s plans for Saturn depended on attracting another manufacturer to supply vehicles after G.M. cut off production.

    “I don’t think he could find anybody who could give Saturn a competitive product line within two years,” said Joseph Phillippi, a principal in the firm Auto Trends Consulting. “It’s not surprising that a foreign automaker would not want to be entering the U.S. market now.”

    G.M. said it would honor the warranties of all Saturn vehicles through other G.M. dealerships.

    Saturn is one of four brands that G.M., which spent about six weeks in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this year, plans to eliminate in the United States.

    It is shutting down Pontiac by the end of the year, is selling Saab to a company in Sweden and has a deal to sell Hummer to a Chinese manufacturer.

    G.M. also has agreed to sell a majority of its European brand, Opel, to a group led by Magna International, a parts maker, and the Russian bank Sberbank.


    Saturn also was a 'special-condition division' of General Motors,
    not required to contract with the UAW, so "Big Labor" can't be
    blamed for this one ...
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby Freakzilla » 01 Oct 2009 09:24

    Maybe "being ugly cars" is to blame?
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby Crysknife » 01 Oct 2009 12:17

    I don't know about you, but I think the Saturn Sky was pretty bitchin.


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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby SandChigger » 01 Oct 2009 12:25

    Never seen nor driven one that looked like that. ;)

    Freakzilla wrote:Maybe "being ugly cars" is to blame?

    Maybe being big ugly shit cars? :)
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby Omphalos » 01 Oct 2009 15:06

    That newish SUV of theirs is cool too.
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby trang » 01 Oct 2009 15:38

    Saturn's were ok, clunky, but ok, knew friends that have them. Just the bastard child of GM.
    Pontiac is going the way of teh DODO to, signs of the times.

    I am a GM fan (Cars/trucks.. not the company itself), but the company is a love/hate relationship. Lethargic to market
    with technologies that should have been incorporated a decade ago, and pricing that has been hard to swallow.

    I believe they are starting to get the message, but still not moving as fast as I know they can if they wanted to.

    I believe we will see the paring down of brands over the next couple years, as the market just cant support it.

    Someone give me a car/truck that:

    1. gets 200 miles to the gallon
    2. has the equivilent of 500 horspower and 750 lbs of torque
    3. looks sharp
    4. performance handling
    5. all wheel drive engageable
    6. can carry 6 adults in comfort and carry a queen size mattress in the bed or cargo space
    7. leg room,

    I believe we will see the paring down of brands over the next couple years, as the market just cant support it.

    Someone give me a car/truck that:

    1. gets 200 miles to the gallon
    2. has the equivilent of 500 horspower and 750 lbs of torque
    3. looks sharp
    4. performance handling
    5. all wheel drive engageable
    6. can carry 6 adults in comfort and carry a queen size mattress in the bed or cargo space
    7. leg room
    8. head room
    9. a quadraphonic kick ass 500 watt stereo with crystal clear live feel sound
    10. Video Entertainment system with all the trimmings Example, Frank Herbert holographed reading the Chronicles on tap.
    11. a five year maintenance window
    12 run on energy that is free or super cheap and renewable
    13. Deer and bug deflection
    14 costs less than 15k.

    Dream options
    1. earth to orbit capability in limousine style comfort
    2. the entire information of the internet stored in solid state drives.
    3. Auto Drive when i want to get blasted and just be driven home safely
    4. hard points for variety of self-defense weaponry
    5. On board medical station with capability to repair any damage I might do to myself or encounter whilst moving about in public.

    Read over those requirements a few times, Im not gonna hold my breath waiting for it.
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby SandChigger » 01 Oct 2009 17:45

    I'd settle for a lock remote that doesn't blare the fucking horn whenever you use it. Like, yes, I want the PWT in the house around back to know what I'm up to. :twisted:

    HONK!!! (I'm leaving. There'll be no one here for a while.)

    HONK HONK!!! (I'm home. If you were thinking armed robbery, now's yer chance!)

    What the fuck happened to the little Grk-kee-coo sound cars used to make? :(
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 01 Oct 2009 18:28

    I think car alarms that go off for anything less than someone trying to open the door without unlocking it should be illegal.

    Next time I hear one of those things going off in my neighborhood I'm throwing a brick through their windsheild with a note tied to it that says this:

    Your alarm is not going off because a brick was thrown through your window;
    a brick was thrown through your window because your alarm was going off.

    Learn some respect asshole.


    :mad:
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby SandChigger » 01 Oct 2009 19:03

    Back years ago before I got that court order allowing me to shoot her on sight, my sister dropped by to tell me some foolass thing or other and left my nephew in the truck. While we were standing on the front porch talking, he somehow set off the alarm and the dumb bitch claimed she didn't know how to shut it off. So while she's hopping around with her fingers up her ass and the kid is laughing his off and the neighbors are coming out to see what the ruckus is, I popped the hood, found the noisy fucker and ripped its wires loose and handed them to her.

    Yeah, I guess you could say I used to have rage issues... :oops:
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby Omphalos » 01 Oct 2009 19:23

    Fucking alarm module in my BMW went out in May. It took us until June to figure out what the fuck was draining my batteries. I have a walnut tree in my front yard. Goddam squirrels were dropping half eaten nuts onto it, triggering the security system. The system properly interpreted the problem and didn't go off, but its supposed to go to sleep a few minutes after anything touches the car. The module went out and it was staying on all night, draining my battery. I was about ready to just rip the entire fucking security package out.
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby SandRider » 02 Oct 2009 00:45

    re: trang's list

    add a fucking real battery to that list, run all personal cars on electricity.
    We can do it, Steve. We have the technology.
    Oh, that's right, the oil companies killed the guy with the technology ....



    also, :violin:

    to the lawyer whining about his fine german auto-mobile
    Omphalos wrote:Fucking alarm module in my BMW went out in May. It took us until June to figure out what the fuck was draining my batteries. I have a walnut tree in my front yard. Goddam squirrels were dropping half eaten nuts onto it, triggering the security system. The system properly interpreted the problem and didn't go off, but its supposed to go to sleep a few minutes after anything touches the car. The module went out and it was staying on all night, draining my battery. I was about ready to just rip the entire fucking security package out.
    ................ I exist only to amuse myself ................
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby Omphalos » 02 Oct 2009 01:10

    SandRider wrote:also, :violin:

    to the lawyer whining about his fine german auto-mobile
    Omphalos wrote:Fucking alarm module in my BMW went out in May. It took us until June to figure out what the fuck was draining my batteries. I have a walnut tree in my front yard. Goddam squirrels were dropping half eaten nuts onto it, triggering the security system. The system properly interpreted the problem and didn't go off, but its supposed to go to sleep a few minutes after anything touches the car. The module went out and it was staying on all night, draining my battery. I was about ready to just rip the entire fucking security package out.


    :D

    The wife and kids get the 525i. I drive a '96 F-150. Probably the best truck Ive ever had, and as a man of my dimensions, I have had a LOT of trucks.
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby trang » 02 Oct 2009 08:21

    never had one of those silly alarm systems in a car, always hated them. Just leave the doors unlocked and don't leave anything inside to steal. If ya do have something in there, put it in the trunk. Or if ya still want a protective device just run down to your local pet store and pick up a Bengal Tiger and leave it sit in the back, think that will cover the attempted thefts.


    Sand Rider I believe I mentioned the things runs on free energy or real cheap and renewable. Electric works:) a battery the size of a pack of cigs ya can just stick in the dash and it runs, when ya leave car just take it out and put in pocket.
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    Re: GM kills Saturn

    Postby Freakzilla » 02 Oct 2009 20:17

    Nobody pays attention to car alarms anymore, there is always one going off.

    My Caddy remote doesn't make any noise, unless I push the button three times, the the horn beeps once.
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