wildcat

Detroit Free Press: GM develops brands' images

96 posts in this topic

Many of us have strong feelings about what each of GM's brands should be. Now, according to an article in the Detroit Free Press, following a study which began three ( ! ) years ago, GM can explain what it intends. Click here.

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Their take on Pontiac and Saturn seems weak and murky to me.

No solid rationale for having these brands.

Sorry, never wanting to buy a Chevrolet is a lame reason to keep a lame duck division going.

Change the Saturn name to Opel, please. Saturn has it's strongest lineup ever because it isn't Saturn.

What facinates me is that there did not seem that much foot dragging and angst when they destroyed Oldsmobile.

I've said it before, in the end it will very close to the following in North America:

Chevrolet

Buick

Cadillac

Market forces will force GM to finally get lean and mean and focused.

Edited by HarleyEarl
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If you are going to use the high performance Pontiac image thing......for me if it is a Chevrolet high performance car or a Pontiac, no difference. Chevrolet has Corvette and Camaro and the SS and a rich history in performance cars, they can cover any high performance car in any category. Pontiac is not needed.

Well, Saturn has never been needed.

I love Pontiac's history, but the reality has to be separated from emotion. It's over for that brand. The market is saying so.

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Very true.

Pontiac was a dull, frumpy car division then and it was turned around into one of my favorites.

I'm no expert in all this, but current situation may be different for Pontiac. I mean, just what

is it to be? So many brands have the performance thing going. I just can't see a reason for

Pontiac to exist other than for emotional reasons. If they could dump Oldsmobile so easily

I can't see the business case for Pontiac either. To me it's too close to Chevrolet in branding

image. I don't want them to go, but I see it as inevitable.

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I have/had far bigger problems with Olds' validity.

Sure- if you give performance models across the board to Chevy, naturally it undermines Pontiac. How about reversing that??

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I have/had far bigger problems with Olds' validity.

Sure- if you give performance models across the board to Chevy, naturally it undermines Pontiac. How about reversing that??

The thing is, Chevy has had a performance image for certain models for well over 40 years.... so I couldn't see them abandoning that..

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Pontiac's future is least clear. GM is rethinking future models for its flashy performance-driven division in light of expensive gasoline and high fuel-economy rules. But the fact that Pontiac now shares its dealerships with Buick and GMC means the brand can contribute with as few as three or four models. Following Audi's path by offering style, fuel efficiency and all-wheel drive performance would work, but other options are under consideration.

Oh I think it's quite clear, TICK-TOCK!

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>>"The thing is, Chevy has had a performance image for certain models for well over 40 years.... so I couldn't see them abandoning that.. "<<

Oh, but it has in the past: in the early '70s, the SS's disappeared or were neutered, the Camaro went SB only and the Z-28 disappeared completely. Meanwhile, over at Pontiac the big displacements, and the only truely viable performance car, the T/A, continued, along with a few others.

IMO- that was only fitting and proper- Chevys are about basic transportation, Pontiacs are about performance (historically-speaking... y-you know; when Pontiac was all about establishing that... the 'late '50s thru the late-'70s).

As many have said- it's all about product.

Oh... I'm not discounting what PCS is so subtly hinting at; just pointing out it's all happened before, it could happen again. Again- not saying it will.

BTW- how many cars does ferrari or maserati sell in a year?

Edited by balthazar
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I have/had far bigger problems with Olds' validity.

Sure- if you give performance models across the board to Chevy, naturally it undermines Pontiac. How about reversing that??

Ok...now I hadn't thought of that.

If they separated Corvette from Chevrolet and made the Camaro a Firebird....and on and on...you might have something there.

To me that's the only way Pontiac can have some validity. Have Chevrolet retreat from the hi performance arena and let Pontiac have it.

I think Chevrolet is fluid enough to do it. Chevrolet has been many things to many people.

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If Pontiac had, -say- 3 strong, unique performance models, Chevy could retain their semi-hokey SSs well & good- the Pontiacs would be different cars. As much as splitting the Corvette off makes sense on some level, I am far too much of a traditionalist here to support that. Leave it at Chevy. I know there's not enough money for this (thanks, saab!), but the Solstice, G8 /G8 SportTruck and a G6-ish segment car, all retuned to top-notch performance (even if exactly equaling Chevy's SSs), should easily hold their own in the B-P-G sales channel- because they'd be different cars for all the marketing particulars that matter. Oh, and advertize the Division!

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I really don't think Pontiac is going anywhere Custom. You own two Ponchos as do I, do you really want to see it go? Sounds like it. But seriously Pontiac could be a brand that is different from Chevrolet by offering sportier styling, ride and handling and models/trims in general. They do a somewhat good job of that now. Pontiac has a buisness case trust me, and a reason to stay in the line-up and a strong following of loyal owners. *cough* Getting rid of a brand that could be made into a performance/image line-up is stupid something that could be done with different styling and performance options/specs. The G8, and Solstice were a good start. I can make a case for Pontiac much easier than say Saab, Saturn or Hummer. So is Pontiac really going? And if so why not just take Buick with them, oh wait they are the "savior". I do like Pontiac but Chevrolet doesn't have the same image nor ever will that Pontiac has had with sportier and generally speaking better looking cars save for the G6 vs. new Malibu comparo (in sedan trim only). Some folks like myself are willing to pay a small price premium for a sportier vehicle like the case when I sided with a Torrent over and Equinox. I like the sportier handling and steering wheels and front end better, I think it is better looking and drives nicer. Some people see a value in paying a little more and getting something slightly sportier in the ride and handling department like the Equinox's FE1 vs the Torrent FE2. I am not blowing smoke up anyones a$$ I put my money where my mouth is and got the Pontiac over the Chevrolet. And I would do it again the same way, same thing with the Cobalt Sport Coupe vs the G5 GT Coupe. As for the G6 Sedan vs. new Malibu I would go Chevy no questions. But that is the beauty of choice. Ask me if I'd rather have a Solstice Targa or new Camaro RS with a V6 I'd say Camaro. Then ask if I would rather have a G8 GT or an Impala SS I'd go G8. If GM really did there homework and stuck some yes money into Pontiac for a new EP II or EP 1.5 G6 like the Malibu with totally different styling and a coupe/vert option as well with a stick shift they could have a huge winner. Same goes for the new Cruze I hope Pontiac getting a sportier and different looking verison of it as well. As for 2009 Aveo 5 vs. the 2009 Pontiac G3 5 the Pontiac is the winner hands down. As you can see I don't like all of Pontiac's products more than Chevy's just some. Even so it still makes a good buisness case, and the Olds killing was a disaster, plus I don't think GM can afford to buy out and shut down Pontiac. As for Saturn or Saab and Hummer than is a different story. The roots of Pontiac are deep and killing of a brand that needs a less work than say Saab or Hummer currently is stupid. Then again what will happen will happen. Getting ride of Pontiac at this point in my mind is stupid. I can justify Pontiac is so many ways it isn't even funny. As can I make a case for GMC staying too. Not Saab and certainly not Saturn. If any car brand goes it should be Saturn and give Pontiac some Opel/Holden models with a Malibu based sportier G6 and Cruze based G5 with totally different styling Pontiac just came back. That is what I am hoping to see!

Edited by gm4life
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I really don't think Pontiac is going anywhere Custom. You own two Ponchos as do I, do you really want to see it go? Sounds like it. But seriously Pontiac could be a brand that is different from Chevrolet by offering sportier styling, ride and handling and models/trims in general. They do a somewhat good job of that now. Pontiac has a buisness case trust me, and a reason to stay in the line-up and a strong following of loyal owners. *cough* Getting rid of a brand that could be made into a performance/image line-up is stupid something that could be done with different styling and performance options/specs. The G8, and Solstice were a good start. I can make a case for Pontiac much easier than say Saab, Saturn or Hummer. So is Pontiac really going? And if so why not just take Buick with them, oh wait they are the "savior". I do like Pontiac but Chevrolet doesn't have the same image nor ever will that Pontiac has had with sportier and generally speaking better looking cars save for the G6 vs. new Malibu comparo (in sedan trim only). Some folks like myself are willing to pay a small price premium for a sportier vehicle like the case when I sided with a Torrent over and Equinox. I like the sportier handling and steering wheels and front end better, I think it is better looking and drives nicer. Some people see a value in paying a little more and getting something slightly sportier in the ride and handling department like the Equinox's FE1 vs the Torrent FE2. I am not blowing smoke up anyones a$$ I put my money where my mouth is and got the Pontiac over the Chevrolet. And I would do it again the same way, same thing with the Cobalt Sport Coupe vs the G5 GT Coupe. As for the G6 Sedan vs. new Malibu I would go Chevy no questions. But that is the beauty of choice. Ask me if I'd rather have a Solstice Targa or new Camaro RS with a V6 I'd say Camaro. Then ask if I would rather have a G8 GT or an Impala SS I'd go G8. If GM really did there homework and stuck some yes money into Pontiac for a new EP II or EP 1.5 G6 like the Malibu with totally different styling and a coupe/vert option as well with a stick shift they could have a huge winner. Same goes for the new Cruze I hope Pontiac getting a sportier and different looking verison of it as well. As for 2009 Aveo 5 vs. the 2009 Pontiac G3 5 the Pontiac is the winner hands down. As you can see I don't like all of Pontiac's products more than Chevy's just some. Even so it still makes a good buisness case, and the Olds killing was a disaster, plus I don't think GM can afford to buy out and shut down Pontiac. As for Saturn or Saab and Hummer than is a different story. The roots of Pontiac are deep and killing of a brand that needs a less work than say Saab or Hummer currently is stupid. Then again what will happen will happen. Getting ride of Pontiac at this point in my mind is stupid. I can justify Pontiac is so many ways it isn't even funny. As can I make a case for GMC staying too. Not Saab and certainly not Saturn. If any car brand goes it should be Saturn and give Pontiac some Opel/Holden models with a Malibu based sportier G6 and Cruze based G5 with totally different styling Pontiac just came back. That is what I am hoping to see!

You're in a dream world. Pontiac will be slowly starved of product and what product they do have will be rebadges. There are legal reasons it will be starved.

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Are you sure? And by the way I have hope for Pontiac and GM. If they are well done rebadges I don't care, so are they getting the axe? Or just going to have rebadges and not unqiue products, then again I consider the G8 unique. And the Solstice should have been until those &#036;h&#33;-heads at Saturn got there god-damned Sky.

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It's sort of brash for PCS to offer firm answers and absolutist predictions in a time of uncertainty. Then again, being brash and bold is what PCS seems to be about. And that's okay. That's part of his persona here. It's what makes him entertaining to me at least.

I'm saying to keep hope for the time being. GM hasn't let the lights go out yet.

But keep in mind nothing is guaranteed right now either.

That's all I'm going to say and no more. I've spoken my peace and counted to three.

Edited by YellowJacket894
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It's sort of brash for PCS to offer firm answers and predictions with absolution in a time of uncertainty. Then again, being brash and bold is what PCS seems to be about. And that's okay. That's part of his persona here. It's what makes him entertaining to me at least.

I'm saying to keep hope for the time being. GM hasn't let the lights go out yet.

But keep in mind nothing is guaranteed right now either.

That's all I'm going to say and no more. I've spoken my peace and counted to three.

I know what you are saying. But either way it would for me at least be painfully to even see Hummer my least favorite brand to go. So imagine what I think about Pontiac or GMC going. I am keeping the faith and praying nearly daily isn't that sick the praying for a multi-billion dollar corperation. (When I put it that way it sounds sick.) As for PCS I agree with you but the man is hard to tell if he is pissing with you or half serious. And yes he is amusing and one of my favorites. :scratchchin::neenerneener:

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Wow. 3 years and untold millions to come up with information that could have been formulated in 3 days and one or two threads here.

Why does GM PR even bother to release this type of information? It's an embarassment and runs counter to what they need to be doing right now (but so is allowing future product pics to leak all over the place---I guess one of the 20% losing their jobs didn't feel like following orders?)

To the posters above pining for the maintenance of all divisions: GM simply cannot afford it. They'll starve smaller divisions down to 2/3 models--unique or rebadges--doesn't matter. They can't develop all models needed and can't afford to buy out franchisees---that's simply the facts.

At least upper management now admits there's a severe problem (unfortunately, they take no blame and seem to proscribe "the same, only more" as a solution) which is a start, I guess.

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But that indeed could be the future of some of the divisions: 2 or 3 models only. No one believes or is advocating full lineups for all divisions anymore, obviously there's not enough money for that. But there should be enough for a few models for each. Pontiac will only 'starve' with 2-3 models if they are product-starved (ie: G5). Given solid, performance models of considerable uniqueness, I believe they would provide a ROI.

Maserati is part of a 7 brand conglomerate, only has 2 bodystyles of 1 car, with a ferrari-derived engine, only sold 2540 cars in 2007 and only turned a profit that year for the 1st time in 17 years. Yet no one is talking about shutting down the brand there, even tho the same dire sorts of circumstances are at play there. Pontiac could move into the same sort of product slot- higher caliber coupe/sedan, plus the Solstice- far less investment than ALSO including a Vibe/ Torrent/ G5/ G6/ Aztek. I would hope there was enough money to do that (plus advertise).

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But that indeed could be the future of some of the divisions: 2 or 3 models only.

Well, Buick is there now w/ 3 models.... I could see a 3 Pontiac line-- Solstice, G8, and G6 (keep the coupe and coupe/convertible, they are unique within the NA Epsys).

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It is too hard to differentiate these brands that are using cars on the same platform in the same price segment. Buick, Chevy, Pontiac, Saturn all sell midsize sedans in the $20-30k range. Saturn or Pontiac could go away, the G8 is the only Pontiac that isn't a rebadge of a car already sold in the US. Buick needs to go to $28-45k rice range if they stick around, the base LaCrosse/Invicta has to be nicer and more expensive than a Malibu LTZ. If Buick can't sell cars for over $30,000 then they should kill the brand, they don't need Buick to sell $23,000 LaCrosses, Chevy sells sedans for that price.

They are delusional if they think the upcoming 9-5 will compete with the 5-series or GS460. For one, the Lexus is a soft, comfort car, the BMW is built for performance, so which are they going for? Secondly, the 9-5 is Epsilon2, no front drive platform is going to compete with a 5-series.

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Well, Buick is there now w/ 3 models.... I could see a 3 Pontiac line-- Solstice, G8, and G6 (keep the coupe and coupe/convertible, they are unique within the NA Epsys).

This is what I've been saying for a while now. Pontiac/Buick/GMC should be considered one 'brand'. Give Buick three or four good Lexus-lite models, Pontiac three or four good BMW-lite models, and GMC three or four good upscale Trucks/crossovers, and you've got yourself one well-rounded showroom that differentiates itself well from Chevy, Saturn, or Cadillac dealers.

-RBB

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Guys, PCS is not the word of Og. He works for GM, somewhat high up it seems, and that's about it. We also know he has a bit of a vindictive streak, as evidenced by his replies concerning Chris Doane and others. We also know he feels wronged by Pontiac due to some internal politics a while back.

Knowing all this, it's pretty much obvious to me that PCS has an agenda to further his current career (nothing wrong with that) at the expense of Pontiac, with which he has some sour grapes (kinda immature).

PCS presents one viewpoint, and his posts reflect that viewpoint. GM has many viewpoints, hence its chronically-indecisive product planning. Let's not get carried away here. PCS has been wrong about things before, and he will be wrong about some in the future. He will also be right about some things.

But the levels of freakout around here lately are getting ridiculous.

Facts: Pontiac sells well; along with GMC and Buick it is the second largest sales division. Pontiac sells absurdly well in Canada. China saves Buick, what about Canada and Pontiac? It's a possibility. Finally, Saturn was given a product surge of well-regarded products, yet sales have not improved at all.

Again, nothing has been decided yet.

-------------

Nothing against you, PCS. I enjoy reading your posts.

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Guys, PCS is not the word of Og. He works for GM, somewhat high up it seems, and that's about it. We also know he has a bit of a vindictive streak, as evidenced by his replies concerning Chris Doane and others. We also know he feels wronged by Pontiac due to some internal politics a while back.

Knowing all this, it's pretty much obvious to me that PCS has an agenda to further his current career (nothing wrong with that) at the expense of Pontiac, with which he has some sour grapes (kinda immature).

PCS presents one viewpoint, and his posts reflect that viewpoint. GM has many viewpoints, hence its chronically-indecisive product planning. Let's not get carried away here. PCS has been wrong about things before, and he will be wrong about some in the future. He will also be right about some things.

But the levels of freakout around here lately are getting ridiculous.

Facts: Pontiac sells well; along with GMC and Buick it is the second largest sales division. Pontiac sells absurdly well in Canada. China saves Buick, what about Canada and Pontiac? It's a possibility. Finally, Saturn was given a product surge of well-regarded products, yet sales have not improved at all.

Again, nothing has been decided yet.

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Nothing against you, PCS. I enjoy reading your posts.

He may be wrong--but its only temporary---as the anticipated "turnaround" in 2010 is going to prove to be just as elusive as the 3 other 'plans' RW and the Funky Bunch have foisted on the BoD and GM's fans for the past few years.

How is it that management has failed to meet its ambiguous goals EVERY time, yet intelligent people (at C&G or the BoD) continue to believe hook line & sinker?

What is it that they say about the definition of insanity? Check back in 18 months--things will be just as bad, if not worse.

I can't believe the free ride RW is getting. There's a catastrophe just waiting to happen over at the tubes--the fact that noone is truly acting like its a crisis is astounding.

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Isn't the fact of the matter that some entity could buy GM at what amounts to chump change (wasn't it $5.73 billion the other day), very small money compared to Mattel or whoever? I suppose Toyota wouldn't dare buy GM and cut everything but Chevrolet and Cadillac... but if those brands are the great core assets that GM thinks they are, Toyota could have most everything and be most everywhere for comparatively little money!

Edited by wildcat
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