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SAmadei

Pontiac in China?

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Just a stupid thought out loud...

The Chinese (and to a lesser degree Indian) automotive markets are considered to be the biggest growth markets right now, and the Chinese are batty over getting the opportunity to get their hands on part of the vaulted American lifestyle... a Buick! Obviously, these folks are probably influenced by a long history of great Buick models, not the current crop of boring crap. However, they are willing to take what they can.

If they have been exposed to that much American culture, is it a long shot to think that they also have been exposed to the muscle car culture in America? Wouldn't some people in China like to get their hands on a piece of that? At least a Solstice or a G8 would be closer in heritage to America's muscle car era than a Buick.

So considering the relative ease of getting into the Chinese market (compared to the US or other wealthy, overregulated countries), perhaps Pontiac could see some salvation in becoming another global brand... even if its a global niche brand.

Granted, there are some drawbacks... for example, having a gas guzzler in a 3rd world country, the competition from the Park Avenue or future competition from a Chinese bound Camaro or the timing... these places are getting hit as hard as we are financially.

Thoughts... I'm donning my asbestos suit...

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Actually I recall some time ago there were some Pontiac Tempests (the L-Body ones) in China. But could be people using Pontiac parts, because the Corsica was sold there.

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I thought I read somewhere that Buick is held in high regard because:

1) As already mentioned, it represents "The American Way Of Life" and "American Luxury" to many Chinese.

2) China's leaders used to use them (or they still do?) and they represent luxury to many Chinese people because of this.

I'm not quite sure Pontiac would be perceived the same way. The American culture angle might work, but I don't think Pontiac has the same history with the Chinese people that Buick does. I do have a hard time seeing them becoming enamored of a muscle car; it somehow doesn't seem to mesh with their culture. It is an interesting thought though.

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I'm not quite sure Pontiac would be perceived the same way. The American culture angle might work, but I don't think Pontiac has the same history with the Chinese people that Buick does. I do have a hard time seeing them becoming enamored of a muscle car; it somehow doesn't seem to mesh with their culture. It is an interesting thought though.

Well, a few of the indigenous Chinese auto companies are showing off muscular sports cars, I think there might be some interest. In my experience, the Chinese are not the cultural wallflowers the Japanese are... they have the potent GTR as their idea of a muscle car.

As long as there is testosterone, there is a certain degree of ego, aggression and "bad ass"-edness (for lack of a better term). A muscle car gives you an outlet for that, instead of joining the Triads... and is slightly less likely to land you in prison. ;-)

Granted, the Chinese population has likely had the American muscle car era largely censored from popular media... so a little informative marketing will be required.

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The car the last emperor used was a Buick before the communist came in.

This left a lasting impression on the Chinese and they have not forgotten it. This was an advantage GM could not have ever paid for in their market.

Buick has the preception deal down just as Toyota has here.

Not sure bringing Pontiac is is the solution. Best to get a real understand of their market and what they want and can afford. Just sending in a Pontiac is just so GM. What is good for GM is good for China. You Buy Hop Sing. We are not selling Pontiacs to people who conjure up old images of the 60's.

The Solstice and the G3 may be the best chance to sell over their. Most people in China are buying cheap, very cheap Daewoo's. Many of their people are now just getting a car and a two room apartment.

You would have better luck selling the G8 to the Russian Mafia. They like fast V8's to out run the Crown Vic police cars in Russia.

Edited by hyperv6
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The car the last emperor used was a Buick before the communist came in.

This left a lasting impression on the Chinese and they have not forgotten it. This was an advantage GM could not have ever paid for in their market.

Buick has the preception deal down just as Toyota has here.

Not sure bringing Pontiac is is the solution.

You would have better luck selling the G8 to the Russian Mafia. They like fast V8's to out run the Crown Vic police cars in Russia.

Yup.

Russia has a dog-eat-dog, wild west sort of mentality going on right now.

Pontiac would be perfect there.

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Yup.

Russia has a dog-eat-dog, wild west sort of mentality going on right now.

Pontiac would be perfect there.

Might build a lot of G8's in black and will put some screaming chickens on the hoods to send over.

In each glove box with could have a DVD of "KGB and the Comrad" It is the little know Russian knock off movie of Ukrains running voka west of the Volga river.

The best part is Big Ivan and Little Ivan.

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The car the last emperor used was a Buick before the communist came in.

This left a lasting impression on the Chinese and they have not forgotten it. This was an advantage GM could not have ever paid for in their market.

Buick has the preception deal down just as Toyota has here.

No arguing with that, but Buick's presence is what paves the way for Pontiac... thinking dealer network, service/parts, marketing channels... for the younger set... and granted, I was thinking a lot more of pushing the Solstice and G6 coupe/vert than the G8... but make the G8 available, at least.

Figure out which celebrities have the young people's eye and give them a Solstice or 50 cent's G8 in a big public display.

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No arguing with that, but Buick's presence is what paves the way for Pontiac... thinking dealer network, service/parts, marketing channels... for the younger set... and granted, I was thinking a lot more of pushing the Solstice and G6 coupe/vert than the G8... but make the G8 available, at least.

Figure out which celebrities have the young people's eye and give them a Solstice or 50 cent's G8 in a big public display.

Cadillac, Buick, Chevy and Daewoo [Himm? a line up similar to what we will have] already have the market pretty well covered and are showing a profit. Do you spend the money on a poor line up of Pontiacs. Or do you keep with what is working that has no overlap and is showing a profit?

Lets face it Pontiac has only two cars worth a damn and the Chinese already have cars better than the G5 or 6 [Note they are Chinese not stupid]. They also already have the Matrix/Vibe.

If GM was to sell the two best cars Pontiac has they could just rebadge the G8 as a Buick as they already do on the other Holderns and sell the Soltice as the Daewoo they already sell in Korea.

If Pontiac had a strong line up and was doing well here I would say go for it. But you want to spend a lot of money on product that will overlap the Divisions Already in China. Sounds like it would create the same problem we already have here.

Also has anyone got a clue what the Chinese really want. Do they even have a clue of Pontiac. If this works how much money would GM make vs how much they would lose if it fails.

If you want to save Pointiac it has to be done in this country. As it is Americans less and less want Pontiac so to expect the Chinese to save them is nuts. For this to work we would have to show improved products here first and then there. Last I looked GM can't afford to hardly fix Chevy let alone much else here.

There is just too little gain for so much risk. Again you have to think Profits.

I has come down to getting better product here means less divisions. To get a Alpha paid for means less other models.

I have two Pontiacs in the garage but I would gladly trade Pontiac for a strong and profitable GM.

I think too few understand too that Pontiac could someday be brought back and rebuilt one model at a time if GM fixes the other prolems.

Ok you spend all the money to make and market these cars in China and it fails what do you tell the other divisions in the State that are just hanging on.

GM needs to run its world wide operation like its plants. They want less workers making more cars. Well GM needs less Division and models making more profit.

Less is more these days.

Besides DC would not want to see much development in China since they handed out the money. Many of the cars GM has in China are not imports. They are built there or are sent in in kit form and assembled there. China does not want to take in a lot of imports.

If you were going to send anything over send Hummer. They build a hell of a close knock off already and the Chinese know what a Hummer is. Once it is up and running sell them off to someone there.

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The car the last emperor used was a Buick before the communist came in.

Puyi had a 1932 Cadillac, not a Buick. It was a Deluxe 8C.

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Puyi had a 1932 Cadillac, not a Buick. It was a Deluxe 8C.

The Caddy came later but he had the Buicks first.

Sun Yat-sen, China's first president, took his first automobile ride in a 1912 Buick. And two Buicks bought by China's last emperor, Pu Yi, in 1924 were the first cars owned by an emperor and the first to enter the Forbidden City.

A Buick advertisement in 1930 claimed one in every six cars in China was a Buick, and that "Buick owners are mostly the leading men in China."

Also note the the kings of England also imported Buicks form Canada in the early 20th century.

Edited by hyperv6
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Even if GM's success had to do with its American-ness, which I doubt, I don't think Americans here would like China's idea of an American muscle car.

Lots of US companies operate in China, but they cater to local tastes. A toasted McShrimp rice burger may be popular in Shanghai, but probably not in Topeka.

Buick's success has more to do with the brand adapting to Chinese customer wants and needs. They were one of the first to build luxury cars locally in China.

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