Oracle of Delphi

Holden Monaro/Pontiac GTO DEAD

183 posts in this topic

By BYRON MATHIOUDAKIS 16 January 2008

GENERAL MOTORS has confirmed that a VE Commodore-based Monaro is a non-starter for now, as Holden is set to lead any pending development of the smaller rear-drive Torana.

Speaking at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, GM ‘car czar’ Bob Lutz sounded the Monaro’s death knell loud and clear.

“I think (the Monaro/Pontiac GTO) is gone for now,” Mr Lutz said.

“We’ve got nothing in the product plan right now like that. We’d like to have, but you can’t do everything.”

However, the ebullient senior GM executive then went on to raise hopes that the Holden-developed but Canadian-built Chevrolet Camaro – due to be launched globally next year – might be imported into Australia as a sort of Monaro replacement instead.

While Mr Lutz stopped short of actually announcing the Camaro for Australia (“I don’t think I should be put in a position of confirming vehicle introductions for Australia”), he did say that its basic architecture was designed from the outset for a right-hand drive configuration.

“You’ll have to ask (new Holden managing director and CEO Mark Reuss),” he teased.

“But let’s put it this way: since right-hand drive is available in the (Camaro’s VE Commodore-based Zeta) architecture, and since we would like to obviously sell some in Singapore, the UK and even the odd one in Japan, there is certainly a distinct possibility that it could be sold in Australia.”

Mr Lutz revealed that he halted the development of, or killed off, some future Zeta-based vehicles such as the Monaro and a proposed rear-wheel drive Impala V8, as GM seeks to downsize its range in order for it to meet the US Government’s new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) legislation, which requires manufacturers to reach a fleet average of 35 miles per gallon (6.72L/100km) by 2020.

“In terms of fuel economy, that’s not the end of the market where we want to stimulate demand,” Mr Lutz explained.

“We have to find ways to stimulate demand and desirability in cars that will get us closer to the 35 MPG average.

“Because the Monaro and the (VE Commodore sedan-based Pontiac) G8 – as good as they are, and even though we can emphasise V6 engines over a V8 and at some point put in a hybrid system etc – are not going to get us to the 35 (figure).”

It is becoming clear that the ‘Alpha’ Torana – as well as SUVs that ditch the truck-base chassis for a Zeta-derived monocoque construction – might be a smarter solution to help the GM fleet meet the 2020 CAFE target.

However, Mr Lutz also warned that the future CAFE laws do not automatically green-light the Torana.

“Torana is a rear-wheel drive vehicle smaller than the Zeta architecture and smaller than the current CTS Cadillac architecture. It is, or would be, about the size of a BMW 1 Series – maybe just a tiny bit bigger to enable larger wheels.

“Now that is the architecture that has been bandied about the US press under the name of ‘Alpha Architecture’, and Alpha is still under consideration, but we haven’t kicked off any design work or any engineering work because we have to sort our way through this 35 MPG task.

“As a lightweight rear-wheel drive car that is going to add about 1MPG compared to an equivalent lightweight front-wheel drive car – we just have to sort of wait awhile and see where we are.”

Nevertheless, Mr Lutz was keen to keep Holden very much in the picture should the Torana go ahead.

“If we proceed with the Alpha Architecture, I think it is safe to say that Holden would be vitally interested in participating in that project.”

Holden in Australia is now GM’s global ‘Home Room’ for middle-to-large rear-wheel drive vehicles including sedans and utilities.

Home Room is GM-speak for the GM division that is responsible for all the development of a particular architecture.

Mr Lutz also singled out GM-DAT in South Korea as GM’s centre for light cars, Opel in Germany for small and medium-sized front-wheel drive vehicles and their derivatives, Brazil for Hummer and the United States as the Home Room for Cadillac, Corvette, the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky convertibles, and full-sized truck and utilities/SUVs.

Link: http://www.goauto.com.au/mellor/mellor.nsf...A2573D10022710D

Edited by Pontiac Custom-S
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I don't want to share my Camaro. No car should look exactly the same as the Camaro ever again. I don't want a copied Camaro badged as a Holden nonetheless.

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Can't help but notice that even though the article revealed the cancellation of the Impala... the focus was on Monaro... but an exported Camaro would justify volume at Oshawa, now wouldn't it? I refuse to buy cars from GM-DAT btw if they can't improve, so I guess it'll be the Opel Derivatives or Cadillacs only please.

Edited by vonVeezelsnider
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Of course I don't like hearing, reading, or otherwise learning of the Impala going to the great nether-nether, but I still like the idea of having some good rear-drive cars coming out.

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I wouldn't bet against Holden doing a new Monaro despite what Bob Lutz says. I hope we do see the Camaro but it's not a Monaro replacement.

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I don't want to share my Camaro. No car should look exactly the same as the Camaro ever again. I don't want a copied Camaro badged as a Holden nonetheless.

Don't worry... if the Camaro goes to Australia, I suspect it will remain a Chevrolet and debut the Chevrolet brand into the Australian market. Kind of ingenious actually, considering the state of things to come. On that note, this might explain the potential for Chevrolet to get Alpha instead of Pontiac. It could be sold as a Chevrolet in Australia, North America, and Europe... :unsure:

It is becoming clear that the ‘Alpha’ Torana – as well as SUVs that ditch the truck-base chassis for a Zeta-derived monocoque construction – might be a smarter solution to help the GM fleet meet the 2020 CAFE target.

A Zeta-based truck and an exported Camaro might fill up quite a bit of capacity at Oshawa... :scratchchin:

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Here are the important parts in cased you missed them. :AH-HA_wink:

GENERAL MOTORS has confirmed that a VE Commodore-based Monaro is a non-starter for now, as Holden is set to lead any pending development of the smaller rear-drive Torana.

Mr Lutz revealed that he halted the development of, or killed off, some future Zeta-based vehicles such as the Monaro and a proposed rear-wheel drive Impala V8, as GM seeks to downsize its range in order for it to meet the US Government’s new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) legislation, which requires manufacturers to reach a fleet average of 35 miles per gallon (6.72L/100km) by 2020.

“In terms of fuel economy, that’s not the end of the market where we want to stimulate demand,” Mr Lutz explained.

“We have to find ways to stimulate demand and desirability in cars that will get us closer to the 35 MPG average.

“Because the Monaro and the (VE Commodore sedan-based Pontiac) G8 – as good as they are, and even though we can emphasise V6 engines over a V8 and at some point put in a hybrid system etc – are not going to get us to the 35 (figure).”

See no matter what GM does they can't get Zeta to 35 MPG! :scratchchin:

It is becoming clear that the ‘Alpha’ Torana – as well as SUVs that ditch the truck-base chassis for a Zeta-derived monocoque construction – might be a smarter solution to help the GM fleet meet the 2020 CAFE target.

See, it's all about CAFE. :rolleyes:

However, Mr Lutz also warned that the future CAFE laws do not automatically green-light the Torana.

Because many in GM want Cadillac to do this, that's why it's not automatically green-lighted. :P

“Torana is a rear-wheel drive vehicle smaller than the Zeta architecture and smaller than the current CTS Cadillac architecture. It is, or would be, about the size of a BMW 1 Series – maybe just a tiny bit bigger to enable larger wheels.

“Now that is the architecture that has been bandied about the US press under the name of ‘Alpha Architecture’, and Alpha is still under consideration, but we haven’t kicked off any design work or any engineering work because we have to sort our way through this 35 MPG task.

“As a lightweight rear-wheel drive car that is going to add about 1MPG compared to an equivalent lightweight front-wheel drive car – we just have to sort of wait awhile and see where we are.”

As a small lightweight RWD car it should be in the USA's Home Room. :yes:

Nevertheless, Mr Lutz was keen to keep Holden very much in the picture should the Torana go ahead.

“If we proceed with the Alpha Architecture, I think it is safe to say that Holden would be vitally interested in participating in that project.”

Of course they are, if they don't get Alpha, no use for Holden now is there since Zeta is going away! They see the writing on the wall. :smilewide:

Holden in Australia is now GM’s global ‘Home Room’ for middle-to-large rear-wheel drive vehicles including sedans and utilities.

Home Room is GM-speak for the GM division that is responsible for all the development of a particular architecture.

Mr Lutz also singled out GM-DAT in South Korea as GM’s centre for light cars, Opel in Germany for small and medium-sized front-wheel drive vehicles and their derivatives, Brazil for Hummer and the United States as the Home Room for Cadillac, Corvette, the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky convertibles, and full-sized truck and utilities/SUVs.

Again, Alpha is small, not midsize, so it should be developed in the USA along with Corvette, Solstice/Sky, that is the Home Room it belongs in, not Holden's. More on that to come! :AH-HA_wink:

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So Sigma will live on ?:scratchchin:

The way I see it it's either that, the development of a Sigma-II (perhaps it's too expensive as an alternative), or Zeta given to Cadillac and taken away from Holden in terms of further/future development of the architecture.

Edited by ZL-1
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Here are the dumb, not thought out, quotes in cased you missed them. :AH-HA_wink:

See no matter what GM does they can't get Zeta to 35 MPG! :scratchchin:

See, it's all about CAFE. :rolleyes:

For review. CAFE stands for Corporate Average Fuel Economy.

For the purposes of CAFE, a manufacturer's car output is divided into a domestic fleet (vehicles with more than 75 percent U.S., Canadian or post-NAFTA Mexican content) and a foreign fleet (everything else). Each of these fleets must separately meet the requirements.
Fuel economy calculation for alternative fuel vehicles multiplies the actual fuel used by a "Fuel Content" Factor of 0.15[15] as an incentive to develop alternative fuel vehicles.[16] Dual-fuel vehicles, such as E85 capable models, are taken as the average of this alternative fuel rating and its gasoline rate. Thus a 15 mpg dual-fuel E85 capable vehicle would be rated as 40 mpg for CAFE purposes, in spite of the fact that less than one percent of the fuel used in E85 capable vehicles is actually E85.

All GM needs to do is make every Zeta engine FlexFuel. Forget hybrid, forget hydrogen, forget fairy dust. It would cost an extra $100 per car to make them FlexFuel. CERTAINLY cheaper than spending a huge amount of money to fund development of the platform only to throw it in the dustbin. The idea that GM cannot make the ZETA up to CAFE standards is complete and utter BS beyond any shadow of any doubt. To those of you who celebrate the Zeta demise, you are shortsighted, unimaginative, and are clearly a danger to General Motors. Furthermore... unless GM is planning on having Zeta around for a W-body like amount of time, there would be two to three revisions of the platform completed by the time the 35mpg AVERAGE comes into effect. Do you think Ford was pumping out FlexFuel Tauruses and Sables in 1999 out out of the kindness of their dear sweet hearts? No, it was to raise their CAFE on the cheap.

Manufacturers are also allowed to earn CAFE "credits" in any year they exceed CAFE requirements, which they may use to offset deficiencies in other years. CAFE credits can be applied to the three years previous or three years subsequent to the year in which they are earned. The reason for this requirement is so that manufacturers are not penalized for occasionally (due to market conditions, for example) failing the targets, but only for persistent failure to meet them.

GM has LOTS of CAFE credits due to their production of FlexFuel vehicles.

Additionally

It also appears any new fuel-economy legislation will continue to offer automakers the ability to win extra CAFE credits for producing “flex-fuel” vehicles capable of running either on gasoline or E85, which is 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline –- a fuel that ostensibly reduces dependence on foreign oil and is proven to cut emissions.

Retaining flex-fuel CAFE credits reportedly was staunchly defended by many politicians. Some industry sources suggest it is the presence of the ethanol credit that has enabled several automakers -– chiefly the U.S. domestics –- to meet CAFE standards over the past several years.

The new CAFE legislation has retained the extra credit provision for FlexFuel.

In short, any argument using CAFE as a reason for canceling ANY Zeta vehicle is a complete Red Herring designed to deflect the truth about the internal political struggles inside of GM.

Edit: A 19mpg EPA combined FlexFuel Zeta <this assumes HF3.6 and similar weight to '07 CTS> would be rated at 40mpg.

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A sad day indeed. All this bull&#036;h&#33; and atom-splicing is making me enraged.

What the F--- is the problem, why can't we have RWD for the masses, or

as it may be for a nice slice of the pie. If there's one thing I will NEVER be

able to live with in a car it's FWD. It's evil and just like a disgusting plague

it seems to be spreading uncontrolably AGAIN, just after we were told the

RWD stuff was FINALLY coming.

Esp. after reading Oldsmoboi's post I want to slap every executive at GM... stupid.

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By BYRON MATHIOUDAKIS 16 January 2008

GENERAL MOTORS has confirmed that a VE Commodore-based Monaro is a non-starter for now, as Holden is set to lead any pending development of the smaller rear-drive Torana.

Is this really news?

Last I heard, a future Monaro/GTO was just a pipe dream anyway... Nothing had ever been greenlighted, IIRC.

Speaking at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, GM ‘car czar’ Bob Lutz sounded the Monaro’s death knell loud and clear.

“I think (the Monaro/Pontiac GTO) is gone for now,” Mr Lutz said.

For now... This could just be a hiatus until they sort the CAFE out. Remember; Bob Lutz is the same man that announced the cancellation of NA Zeta back in the day and look what happened. A lot of this could be posturing.

However, the ebullient senior GM executive then went on to raise hopes that the Holden-developed but Canadian-built Chevrolet Camaro – due to be launched globally next year – might be imported into Australia as a sort of Monaro replacement instead.

That'll NEVER work unless it remains a Chevrolet... Everyone knows that.

“You’ll have to ask (new Holden managing director and CEO Mark Reuss),” he teased.
Speaking of writing on the wall... I'm pretty sure GM wouldn't have promoted Reuss (The future GM head honcho) to Holden unless the operation had a bright future. If it didn't, they would essentially be sending their leading man into a dead end. www.notgonnahappen.com

Mr Lutz revealed that he halted the development of, or killed off, some future Zeta-based vehicles such as the Monaro and a proposed rear-wheel drive Impala V8,

This is good and bad. Zeta still exists at least and still seems to be a part of the plan. And I'm not so sure it's a bad thing to play on the side of caution right now. As many Zeta critics have warned, NOT ALL OF GM's CARS NEED TO BE BIG and/or RWD. I hate seeing some of the Zetas go more than anyone knows, *BUT* if GM is to survive, it must have a balanced portfolio. This si the same thing they've been struggling with for 15 years now. I would love to see a RWD Impala, but I'm pretty sure it wouldn't sell the volume it sells now (I think this factored in more than CAFE) The public has a positive image of the car and with a redesign, (Remember, the current car dates back at least to MS2000 W-Body) I'm betting fleet sales will be replaced with retail share.

Not to mention, it might conflict with Buick some... And I'd rather see Buick stay alive than see Chevrolet pad it's pockets with 50,000 or so more sales.

My main concern right now is Pontiac. Pontiac needs a future, badly. Zeta could still be it; after all, what exactly will Cadillac ride on in the years to come?

I don't really buy the idea that Zeta can't get to 35 MPG or close. Unless it either 1) is as heavy as lead -or- 2) Is chock full of 6.2L 19 MPG V8s. There is absolutely NO reason why the 3.6L couldn't be used in the program along with diesels and hybrids.

As for Alpha: I'm fine with it on a few conditions 1) I can fit my 6'9"/350 ass in it (Something I can't do with Kappa) 2) It offers V8s and 3) It is given to Pontiac and/or Holden, where it belongs. Cadillac can use it, but they need not develop it.

as GM seeks to downsize its range in order for it to meet the US Government’s new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) legislation, which requires manufacturers to reach a fleet average of 35 miles per gallon (6.72L/100km) by 2020.
I still think GM is overreacting.

“In terms of fuel economy, that’s not the end of the market where we want to stimulate demand,” Mr Lutz explained.

Sure it is... You can innovate or limit quantity which will benefit GM either way.

“We have to find ways to stimulate demand and desirability in cars that will get us closer to the 35 MPG average.

And that's the fukt up part. 1) The market will dictate what it wants, even if it means not buying new. 2) It's Washingtons problem to solve, not bankrupt Detroits. 3) It'll never happen in the numbers that some hope for.

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“Because the Monaro and the (VE Commodore sedan-based Pontiac) G8 – as good as they are, and even though we can emphasise V6 engines over a V8 and at some point put in a hybrid system etc – are not going to get us to the 35 (figure).”
I don't really understand why... If anything, you need to be worrying about the trucks. But see, instead GM seems to be taking the easy way out. Screw the enthusiasts for the sake of truck sales instead of actually innovating and balancing the portfolio.

It is becoming clear that the ‘Alpha’ Torana – as well as SUVs that ditch the truck-base chassis for a Zeta-derived monocoque construction – might be a smarter solution to help the GM fleet meet the 2020 CAFE target.

More proof that Zeta is very much alive.

“Now that is the architecture that has been bandied about the US press under the name of ‘Alpha Architecture’, and Alpha is still under consideration, but we haven’t kicked off any design work or any engineering work because we have to sort our way through this 35 MPG task.
If that is indeed the case (which I think it isn't) then it is very bad news.

Mr Lutz also singled out GM-DAT in South Korea as GM’s centre for light cars,

Make 'em nicer and better built.

Opel in Germany for small and medium-sized front-wheel drive vehicles and their derivatives,
Naturally

Brazil for Hummer

Umm, what?!?! Welp, there goes the Hummer franchise...

and the United States as the Home Room for Cadillac, Corvette, the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky convertibles, and full-sized truck and utilities/SUVs.

Or, basically, everything that will supposedly die in 7-8 years.

As far as Sigma... I guess Cadillac could continue to update it (I like the idea that it is Cadillac exclusive, or maybe could become Buick and Cadillac exclusive) as long as it doesn't get dated, which I fear it will/is.

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.

All GM needs to do is make every Zeta engine FlexFuel. Forget hybrid, forget hydrogen, forget fairy dust. It would cost an extra $100 per car to make them FlexFuel. CERTAINLY cheaper than spending a huge amount of money to fund development of the platform only to throw it in the dustbin. The idea that GM cannot make the ZETA up to CAFE standards is complete and utter BS beyond any shadow of any doubt. To those of you who celebrate the Zeta demise, you are shortsighted, unimaginative, and are clearly a danger to General Motors. Furthermore... unless GM is planning on having Zeta around for a W-body like amount of time, there would be two to three revisions of the platform completed by the time the 35mpg AVERAGE comes into effect. Do you think Ford was pumping out FlexFuel Tauruses and Sables in 1999 out out of the kindness of their dear sweet hearts? No, it was to raise their CAFE on the cheap.

GM has LOTS of CAFE credits due to their production of FlexFuel vehicles.

Additionally

The new CAFE legislation has retained the extra credit provision for FlexFuel.

In short, any argument using CAFE as a reason for canceling ANY Zeta vehicle is a complete Red Herring designed to deflect the truth about the internal political struggles inside of GM.

Those tax credits goes bye-bye after 2019.
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And Alpha development work hasn't started?

Of course not, in a fashion typical of the bad old GM, these yo-yos within the company want to waste all of the development money used for zeta by not bringing the cars to market. At the same time they yammer-on about Alpha which is already late and , if ever finished, will come to a very different market they simply can't yet have any good assessment of.

This one time, you and I see this the same way. The idiots are taking over at GM, and a new cycle of foolishness begins.

GM: take your corporate head out of the sand before it is too late!

It is time to make decisions and actually stick to them. If you decide on a new architecture with its attendant lines of models, build the damn thing before it becomes irrelevant! No more delays, reassessments, and shifting priorities - get the damn job done while it still matters. We should all be driving these cars by now, and Alpha should be well into development. Your problem isn't CAFE, nor currency fluctuation, it is vacillation, delay, and a lack of expedient design to market process.

In other words, you are too damn slow!

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Those tax credits goes bye-bye after 2019.

Are you expecting GM will run the Zeta platform for 14 years?

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And Alpha development work hasn't started?

It's started, but on a very small scale.

I'd imagine it will accelerate and expand any minute now.

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Are you expecting GM will run the Zeta platform for 14 years?

W body is a living legend. :)

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W body is a living legend. :)

I'm hoping GM has learned from that mistake.

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For review. CAFE stands for Corporate Average Fuel Economy.

All GM needs to do is make every Zeta engine FlexFuel. Forget hybrid, forget hydrogen, forget fairy dust. It would cost an extra $100 per car to make them FlexFuel. CERTAINLY cheaper than spending a huge amount of money to fund development of the platform only to throw it in the dustbin. The idea that GM cannot make the ZETA up to CAFE standards is complete and utter BS beyond any shadow of any doubt. To those of you who celebrate the Zeta demise, you are shortsighted, unimaginative, and are clearly a danger to General Motors. Furthermore... unless GM is planning on having Zeta around for a W-body like amount of time, there would be two to three revisions of the platform completed by the time the 35mpg AVERAGE comes into effect. Do you think Ford was pumping out FlexFuel Tauruses and Sables in 1999 out out of the kindness of their dear sweet hearts? No, it was to raise their CAFE on the cheap.

GM has LOTS of CAFE credits due to their production of FlexFuel vehicles.

Additionally

The new CAFE legislation has retained the extra credit provision for FlexFuel.

In short, any argument using CAFE as a reason for canceling ANY Zeta vehicle is a complete Red Herring designed to deflect the truth about the internal political struggles inside of GM.

Edit: A 19mpg EPA combined FlexFuel Zeta <this assumes HF3.6 and similar weight to '07 CTS> would be rated at 40mpg.

Loopholes are not only great, they're the American Way. :smilewide:

The only drawback to your post is that it would probably mean much more to GM product development if E85 were more widely available.

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Damn, damn, damn!!! What the :censored: is wrong with GM? I'm just waiting for the announcement that all of these sissified changes are being made because Toyota bought GM.

I think I better get myself a G8 or Camaro if I want to have a brand new, RWD, V8-powered vehicle before they become as extinct as the dinosaurs. :nono:

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A sad day indeed. All this bull&#036;h&#33; and atom-splicing is making me enraged.

What the F--- is the problem, why can't we have RWD for the masses, or

as it may be for a nice slice of the pie. If there's one thing I will NEVER be

able to live with in a car it's FWD. It's evil and just like a disgusting plague

it seems to be spreading uncontrolably AGAIN, just after we were told the

RWD stuff was FINALLY coming.

Esp. after reading Oldsmoboi's post I want to slap every executive at GM... stupid.

yeah, and they won't give us hardtops either.....

j/k.

i sure hope chevy doesn't export the camaro to AU with the crap interior it has planned.....the aussies won't put up with that cheeseball interior.

no GTO=big mistake IMHO.

THIS DOES, however, open the door to FIREBIRD. FIRE CHICKENS UNITE!

Edited by regfootball
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