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Old 12-07-2008, 08:39 PM   #1
Hazdaz
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Unhappy Saturn fading fast??

http://www.burlappcars.com/2008/12/s...ding-fast.html

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Saturn Fading Fast??


This might mean really bad news for Saturn...

I just requested a Saturn model to test drive from GM only to get an Email telling me that starting today, no Saturn cars were available as part of their press fleet.
Pretty sad...

I just wonder if they will keep some of their models through other GM brands.
I think the Sky would be a great Chevy. It already looks like a mini Corvette.
Nobody needs an Outlook when you can get a Traverse.
And the Malibu will take care of the Aura.

So, I guess... This might be it....
Now maybe this blogger is reading too much into that email reply he got from GM, but that sounds like a hell of an indication to me that Saturn is going bye-bye.

Shame too, cuz over the last few years GM has dropped a ton of money in trying to revitalize the brand... and they got some of the newest cars on the road.

If all this is in fact true, my guess is that Saturn dealerships are wholly-owned by GM so they can be shut down LOTS easier than the thousands of contracts that GM has with all their other Buick/Pontiac/GMC/Chevy dealerships.

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Old 12-07-2008, 09:00 PM   #2
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No shame. GM will find a more effective way to market Opels in the US. Saturn really brings nothing to the table.
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Old 12-07-2008, 09:32 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Hazdaz View Post
http://www.burlappcars.com/2008/12/s...ding-fast.html

Now maybe this blogger is reading too much into that email reply he got from GM, but that sounds like a hell of an indication to me that Saturn is going bye-bye.

Shame too, cuz over the last few years GM has dropped a ton of money in trying to revitalize the brand... and they got some of the newest cars on the road.

If all this is in fact true, my guess is that Saturn dealerships are wholly-owned by GM so they can be shut down LOTS easier than the thousands of contracts that GM has with all their other Buick/Pontiac/GMC/Chevy dealerships.

Saturn dealerships are not owned or operated by General Motors.

It is a shame about the brand. GM really blew it on this one, had they not starved the brand of products from 1999-2007, this might have been a different story.

GM has no choice at this point, they have the newest line up of all GM Brands and having the least success.
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Old 12-07-2008, 09:53 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by rbl2 View Post
Saturn dealerships are not owned or operated by General Motors.

It is a shame about the brand. GM really blew it on this one, had they not starved the brand of products from 1999-2007, this might have been a different story.

GM has no choice at this point, they have the newest line up of all GM Brands and having the least success.
saturn buyers are like subaru buyers and i feel as though when GM rebadged opels as saturns this pushed away many of the old school hardcore saturn enthusiasts
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Old 12-07-2008, 10:01 PM   #5
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saturn enthusiasts ?
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Old 12-07-2008, 10:31 PM   #6
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saturn enthusiasts ?
AKA dent resistant plastic enthusiasts.
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:09 PM   #7
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pushed away many of the old school hardcore saturn enthusiasts
Say what?
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:13 PM   #8
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saturn enthusiasts ?
They used to have Saturn owner reunions on the Tennessee factory grounds in the early days of the brand. Believe it or not, back then Saturns were actually nicer to drive than a lot of its small car competition.
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:17 PM   #9
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My mom had one of the first 1992 Saturns. It was an awesome car until it got totaled in an accident.
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Old 12-08-2008, 02:05 AM   #10
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Yeah the old Saturns were incredibly reliable and good products for the efficient little cars they were. I think alot of car enthusiasts were happy at the Euro offerings the new saturns offer, but they really did leave their previous customers without an option.

It's another case of GM not paying attention and making small gains to keep the product relevant and then having to somehow revamp the entire lineup completely.

It was just amazing to me how they could go from touting their plastic door panels in commercials to saying that they were no more, as though it was a sign that they finally made a real car. These older cars have a fanbase and some of them are rabid.

I have a friend who has one of those original four door saturns and she never wants to get a new car, ever. Poor girl didn't even know it was FWD but that's another matter completely.
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Old 12-08-2008, 02:47 AM   #11
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GM is spread to thin to invest properly into any of their divisions. They have to shrink in size to be able to compete. Start off by selling Saab and Hummer Killing Saturn and start thinking the same of Pontiac, GMC trucks and suvs, and maybe even Buick. Keep Chevy and Cadiliac.
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:48 AM   #12
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Yeah I'd rather see them sell Saab Hummer and GMC than kill Saturn; the next-gen Opels look very good, particularly the Insignia, and they need a little more of this stuff called advertising, particularly for the Astra. I think i've seen two Astras in my area since the car came out.
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:39 AM   #13
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hope Saturn survives, they have the best styling for their price in the GM line up (add in chevrolet malibu).

Nick
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Old 12-08-2008, 09:19 AM   #14
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Saturn was a great idea for a car company... but they aren't what they started out to be. GM apparently lost the mission statement about a decade ago.

They were excellent small cars with reliable engines, the dentless panels, perfectly reasonable interiors, built in the USA, with fixed cheap pricing.
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Old 12-08-2008, 09:27 AM   #15
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I'd take the design of the Outlook over the Traverse any day, and the same goes for the Aura/Malibu.
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Old 12-08-2008, 10:22 AM   #16
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my girlfriend and her brother both have saturns. She has an ion and he has the new Astra.

What a difference!!! the ion is a horrible little thing of a car and the astra is quite nice indeed! peppy and a good handler. its too bad noone knows about it
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Old 12-08-2008, 10:48 AM   #17
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Make no mistake, even if Saturn dies, their good cars will surive in the GM camp somewhere.

I wonder where GM would be had all the Saturn money been used to upgrade their existing small car line up.
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:13 PM   #18
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The original Saturn brand concept was flawed as it was half the size it needed to be to turn a profit. It was more of a corporate study than a viable business.
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:32 PM   #19
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Default Report: GM may keep Saturn and rebuild it






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In the last couple of weeks there have been numerous reports that General Motors may be looking at dropping its poor performing brands such as Saturn, Pontiac and GMC, however the carmaker's vice-president of North American vehicle sales, Mark LaNeve, has pointed out that the process is not so simple. One of the biggest challenges, LaNeve explained, is determining whether giving up on a brand is the correct long-term decision.

While GM is admittedly throwing the brunt of its cash and labor at its most profitable brands such as Chevrolet, Cadillac, and Buick, GM says that the Saturn brand has both a "current and future" product program but that this plan is just in "a state of flux" considering the state of the economy, reports Automotive News.

Dumping the Saturn brand and cutting their losses may seem like the easier choice than constructing a new business model for the brand, however doing so would put GM out of pocket by a significant amount of cash something it currently does not have. To dump the brand GM would be forced, by state law, to buy out the 211 Saturn dealers across the country at a cost of nearly $1 billion.

But turning Saturn around will be no simple task - currently the ailing brand has just three models in its lineup and combined sales of less than 80,000 units a month. GM hopes to have a plan in place to make Saturn profitable by 2011, the time period when they plan to begin paying back federal loans as part of the automotive industry bailout package.
http://www.motorauthority.com/report...ebuild-it.html
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:39 PM   #20
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In my opinion there is an already established and tested brand in Opel when saturn pretty much is rebranded opels. Get rid of Pontiac and keep saturn/opel get the cars over here and cut the American Brand hardline BS.

the two most hyped cars from pontiac arnt even pontiac they are holden so what is the big deal anyway.
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:38 PM   #21
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saturn should have stuck to its roots of being reliable, no nonsense JAPANESE car competitors.
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:36 PM   #22
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Sorry laughing my ass off at all the comments how the early saturns were great cars. I worked for Saturn during that time. They were some of the biggest POS to roll off the lot.

They burned oil from the first time they were ran - their systems were cheap junk to the point that Saturn dealers had explainations for each cheap product making noise etc.

That and the dealerships had a huge slush fund to make repairs to the saturns as they came in for "oil" changes. I can't tell you howmany cars I saw get an engine yanked out and totally rebuilt during an oil change. Or howmany cars we had each week arrive on a flatbed as a no start due to the owner running them down to E and the cheap ass fuel pumps burning out ($300) fix. Or how many cars less than a year old we replaced body pannel clips and interior bits and seats that simply just fell off or broke.

One shop dude could pull the engine out of the old Saturns in about an hour - do a ring and piston job on it and have it back in the car in like 3hrs. Many/Many cars had this done given they were burning a quart or more per 3000 miles with less than 50K on them. Engines were terrible. The interiors and body pannels were even worse.

There is a very good reason Saturn looked up Honda for engine solutions and why Saturn started pulling in Opel products.

It's amazing what you can do with a brand perception when you hide all the bad stuff from the customer.

Last edited by SubaruFan; 12-08-2008 at 05:43 PM.
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:06 PM   #23
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It's amazing what you can do with a brand perception when you hide all the bad stuff from the customer.
And yet that is exactly what made many original Saturn owners loyal... I would be willing to bet that other GM divisions at that time had similar problems with poorly engineered cars but they probably were not as eager to help their customers out, but Saturn was known for very good customer service - at a time they were right up there with the Lexus' of the world in terms of customer satisfaction and dealership approval ratings. Customers (in general) can understand that mistakes can happen as long as the company owns up to those mistakes and tries to do the right thing.

If GM took that 'good will' it was gaining from happy Saturn customers and actually IMPROVED the products, we wouldn't be in the sorry mess that we are in today.

IF GM has an actual plan - a GOOD one - to bring back Saturn, then great... but if them having a ton of divisions ends up making the entire company weaker, then I honestly say just pull the plug and stop vacillating back and forth on this decision.

If you look it this way, Toyota has only 1 version of the Camry (not counting cars in other segments like the Highlander). Chevy finally has a VERY competitive car with the Malibu, but it also spent a good chunk of change on designing and engineering it's stablemate the Aura and G8 that all compete with each other in the same market. Wouldn't it be better to have used that money and make ONE world-class car instead of one very good car and 2 average cars?
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:38 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by SubaruFan View Post
Sorry laughing my ass off at all the comments how the early saturns were great cars. I worked for Saturn during that time. They were some of the biggest POS to roll off the lot.

They burned oil from the first time they were ran - their systems were cheap junk to the point that Saturn dealers had explainations for each cheap product making noise etc.

That and the dealerships had a huge slush fund to make repairs to the saturns as they came in for "oil" changes. I can't tell you howmany cars I saw get an engine yanked out and totally rebuilt during an oil change. Or howmany cars we had each week arrive on a flatbed as a no start due to the owner running them down to E and the cheap ass fuel pumps burning out ($300) fix. Or how many cars less than a year old we replaced body pannel clips and interior bits and seats that simply just fell off or broke.

One shop dude could pull the engine out of the old Saturns in about an hour - do a ring and piston job on it and have it back in the car in like 3hrs. Many/Many cars had this done given they were burning a quart or more per 3000 miles with less than 50K on them. Engines were terrible. The interiors and body pannels were even worse.

There is a very good reason Saturn looked up Honda for engine solutions and why Saturn started pulling in Opel products.

It's amazing what you can do with a brand perception when you hide all the bad stuff from the customer.

Typical old school GM, let the customers do R&D work. Strofoam casting for engines is a commonly used technique now, but was rather new when Saturn employed it in the early 90s. Alas, the consumer suffered with sub par products.
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Old 12-08-2008, 09:29 PM   #25
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i had a 92 saturn sl1 and it was a great car if you could look past the oil burning and the plug fowling and the clutch sliping and the radio not working and the struts leaking and the seats breaking and the dash rattling and the windows falling off track and the exhaust leaking and the wiring connections corroding and the tie rod ends failing and the radiator spliting and the trunk leaking and the body panels cracking, but i did get 35mpg and the e-brake worked great.
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