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    General Motors Files to Trademark Riviera Name


    Blake Noble

    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com

    May 9th, 2012

    For a span of almost four decades, Buick’s classic Riviera models brought critical acclaim to one of GM’s oldest marques. Arguably GM’s first real success at building a “personal luxury car,” the Riviera was a “best-of” showcase for Buick offering class-competitive styling, luxury and technology.

    While the Riviera name has been previously used on a concept car introduced for the 2007 Shanghai Auto Show, it hasn’t been applied to a production model since the last Riviera was built in 1999. Now, according to GM enthusiast website GM Inside News, there is the potential for a Riviera revival.

    Last week, on May 3rd, General Motors filed to trademark the Riviera name with the US Patent Office for use on automobiles.

    As GM Inside News mentions, it isn’t really much of a secret that automakers regularly trademark various names and wind up not putting them to use on a production car. On the other hand, AutoGuide points out that GM doesn’t trademark names unless it’s serious about putting them to use.

    So then if GM intends to use the name, what would a new Riviera be like? At the moment, your guess is as good as ours.

    While rumors of Buick adding a new coupe to its lineup have been rather persistent over the last few years, they’ve always been rather sporadic. At one point it was speculated that Buick would sell a coupe version of its Regal sports sedan, based on reports of Vauxhall getting the green-light to develop a two-door version of the related Insignia. There has also since been rumors of Buick building a rear-drive coupe based off of the Alpha platform used by the Cadillac ATS.

    However, Car and Driver recently mentioned in a report on the upcoming Chevy SS sports sedan that GM’s Australian firm Holden was being tasked with developing two new rear-drive Buick vehicles primarily for China. The two Buicks would be based on a revised version of GM's Zeta platform. It’s obvious that one of those vehicles could be a replacement for the Holden Statesman-based Chinese Buick Park Avenue. But could the other be a Zeta-based Buick Riviera coupe?

    Sources: GM Inside News, AutoGuide, Car and Driver

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    It’s obvious that one of those vehicles could be a replacement for the Holden Statesman-based Chinese Buick Park Avenue. But could the other be a Zeta Alpha-based Buick Riviera coupe?

    fixed.

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    It’s obvious that one of those vehicles could be a replacement for the Holden Statesman-based Chinese Buick Park Avenue. But could the other be a Zeta Alpha-based Buick Riviera coupe?

    fixed.

    That's where I would put my money, but Car and Driver's report did specifically say something about "two Zeta II-based Buicks for China" so I thought that I would put that observation out there.

    Edited by black-knight
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    Camino, I think that sketch is unlikely for the next Riviera.

    I don't think that car would make a good Riv but elements of it styling would play well on a larger RWD coupe.

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    If it's on Alpha, it would make a fine Riviera.

    Otherwise, yeah the styling could translate ok to a bigger car.

    Either way, it's the best looking design from Buick (save the Blackhawk) in many, many decades.

    I'd love to see it built.

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    While the Blackhawk made a fine show car it would have a lot of issues in an every day world. Also the cost and weight of the body panels would be an issue. With big fenders like that someone would sit on one and they is no way they would be near as thick as the originals.

    Also stone chips on the rear fenders would be a mess.

    A really cool car not something I would want for everyday.

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    The Blackhawk was just too cool for production, but I'd love to have it. And, if I did, I'd drive it!

    But I wasn't suggesting that it go to production.

    The other design (the Buick Avant) I do think ought to see production, preferably on Alpha.

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    This page has the numerous, very different sketches under the Avant concept at a good viewing size.

    Unfortunately, unless Buick builds a concept for the street, production-izing any of these will only result in dumbed down/bland/homogenous stuff in comparison.

    Think Volt concept vs. reality.

    In other words, I believe the best we can hope for from Buick in the short run (thru 2020) is the level of design/uniqueness we have in the Enclave.

    Not that that's bad, but...

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    2-D design is even easier to make dreamy (vs. productionized) than a million dollar concept. ESP in a bird's eye view.

    True.

    But look at the detailing and shaping on it - Brilliant!

    So much character.

    Love the cowl shape, backlight, use of edges and curves...

    Something tells me that this was designed around Kappa dimensions.

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    I like the basic shape/design, and agree I too get a Kappa vibe from it.

    I'm not so in love with it I could agree to your level of allocates for it, tho.

    Those headlights are pure fantasy, and legal units would severely change the character of the design IMO.

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    Different headlights wouldn't bother me a bit - they are the least important aspect of the design to me. I could see them replaced by a chrome strip with the headlight location in a more normal place. Even the shaping of the front fenders could change without losing a bit of what I value in this design (everything else).

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    Who says that GM will use the Riviera name? They may be protecting that name just like they are trademarking the Electra name and the Invicta name. No guarantees here.

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    The 2+2 was done around a Kappa. It also has many things that would change once reality hit.

    An Alpha car could be done but Buick needs to enlarge it to a 2+2 Luxury coupe if they plan to do a Riv.

    I could see this being reworked into a more stylish larger coupe in a Bently GT style. It would be comfortable, Sporty but practical for daily use. It would be smaller and much cheaper but make it a Bently for the masses for $45,000-50,000. Make it the most expensive Buick but keep it under the price where Cadillac is going.

    As for a 2+2 smaller sports coupe. Good Idea but much later. Buick could do something to competer with the Audi TT and the like.

    A Riviera needs to be a car they could sell in quanities larger than the Solstice and Sky were sold in. It needs to be a car where the back seat could be used and it could easily be a daily driver vs a third car like the Kappa.

    THis is a car that will set the styling direction and face of Buick so it needs to be sold in numbers that would get it seen and convince people Buicks are for well off 30 somethings.and not just grandpa. The Lacross is a very nice car and well styled but too many still think of it as a Lasabre for today and never give it a chance.

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    Who says that GM will use the Riviera name? They may be protecting that name just like they are trademarking the Electra name and the Invicta name. No guarantees here.

    Who is to say Buick may not use all the above? They only have 3 car models and as time advances I see that being added too. I could see the Verano as a new name as most of Buick small cars sucked. but the larger ones on larger cars would serve well.

    With the China connection I do see more models coming some many not be here too.

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    It really burns me when companies like GM trademark names and don't use them. IMHO, if a trade name is not used on an available product, it should become available to the masses again.

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