Goodbye my old friend...

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11,284
Location
Spring HIll
It's been in progress for a few years now, but GM finally has "taken over" Saturn. GM badges to be placed on Saturn cars Saturn had so much promise. They delivered in the early 90's on a promise to be an import-fighter. And they did it well. But the entire division lost it's focus in the mid to late 90's by not offering vehicles that the customer wanted (read: SUV). From a different point of view... It's sad to see so much balley-hoo about a GM nameplate going on a Saturn. If GM didn't cut so many corners, the car that was supposed to "save Saturn", the Ion, wouldn't be so lack luster. So now, instead of making a better product, they're putting the GM badge on it and saying: "The name 'General Motors' speaks to people," he said. "It is a name people trust. We've been in business nearly 100 years and we're the global sales leader. Wonderful. That's just Jim-dandy. The customer could care less about all that fluff. Just build a car that's on par with Toyota or Honda. I'd be OVERJOYED to buy one that offered that same build quality AND resale value. Instead, they're millions and millions in the hole every quarter. And scratching their heads why certain models (Ion) are "failures". It's just typical board-room antics..."rename the product and they will come". How many times have we seen this before? The upper management at GM just doesn't get it. No wonder why so many people are turning to Toyota and Honda for their vehicles. I give Ford credit...upper level management "gets it"! Look at the Ford 500 and the new vehicles they offer...none of them have the coolant-in-the-oil syndrome that plagued their 3.8L V6 for years---much like the 3.1/3.4L GM V6 design that still powers many of GM's vehicles. Ford switch many vehicles to the 24V 3.0L V6, a good work horse. Can't say the same about GM. Is it just me or has GM completely lost it's focus other than pleasing shareholders on a quarterly basis? Selling better engineered cars will please those shareholders alot more in the long run as more people will be purchasing them. But it's the short term where they'll take the hit for R & D. But shareholders don't want to take a hit, even in the short term, do they? God forbid that, right? No wonder Toyota and Honda are sucking GM's market share! They see GM as a large beast to feed upon! Why don't GM's exec's have the same blood-thirsty view of the Toyota and Honda market? Wouldn't that please the very same shareholders? Saturn is dead. Long live Saturn.
 
Messages
843
Location
Grove City, OH
I've read the above link. I would like to know who, and how many people at GM made the decision to have "GM" badges put on all 06' Saturns? I think GM has to many politics and expenses that hold them back from engineering/designing better vehicles.
 
Messages
542
Location
South Central Texas
quote:
It's been in progress for a few years now, but GM finally has "taken over" Saturn.
GM started Saturn, so I dont understand this "take over". Saturn was supposed to be a "fresh" division of GM, with independent ideas and alternative applications. But I dont think it ever was. Just a division, like Chevy or Buick or Cadillac. Whether it now has a "GM" badge on it, or not, doesn't change anything about Saturn, better or worse. GM was bad at "badge engineering" in the seventies and eighties, in sharing bodies and engines. But the divisions have separated in the last decade or so, in developing their own platforms and engines. So things are better than in the past. But as far as GM's problems, yes they have them, but I guess its hard to turn around a huge beast like GM. But they will evolve over time. Maybe the hydrigen/fuel cell alternatives will make or break them. Yes Toyota and Honda are beating GM, but GM (Saturn) is using a Honda V6 in their Vue.
 
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843
Location
Grove City, OH
About the Saturn Ion. Another unwise design move imo, is the instrument cluster is in the middle of the dash, angled towars the driver. I dont buy the excuse, its "safer" that saturn sales woman (I've never seen a salesman at a saturn dealer) probablly tell potential buyers. How many sales have they lost on this car because of this?
 
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625
Location
Silver Spring, MD (USA)
The nice thing about saturn being "revised" is the next set of cars coming out are absolutely awesome. GM is going ot use saturn to launch opel cars in the US. Total design change from the current lineup, and just bad *** in terms of performance. Opel Roadster  - Saturn version of same platform  - Pontiac's also got a version, but its fugly compared to saturns aggressively styled package. That thing looks like it could eat the entire saturn lineup.
 
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2,839
Location
St. Louis
quote:
"The name 'General Motors' speaks to people," he said. "It is a name people trust. We've been in business nearly 100 years and we're the global sales leader.
I trust GM about as much as a drug dealer. Sometimes, you may get some good stuff, and other times garbage. My parents have a 94 Corsica. It has treated them well. Regular oil changes and maintenance. They also have a 95 Chevy truck with the turbo diesel. They are on their 4th fuel injection pump with less than 100,000 miles. My stepfather only uses cuss words to describe his truck. GM is not doing very good financially right now. To me, it looks like they are a sinking ship. Putting a GM badge on a Saturn, to me, is just going to speed the process. I associate GM with leaky intake gaskets, oil burning Saturn’s, and poorly designed fuel injection pumps. That being said, I really like my 99 SL2. I does pretty good compared to Corolla and Civic of that generation. The ION was a step backwards, just like putting the GM badge is on Saturns. I like the idea of Saturn being different. I will run mine till death do use part, and remember the good old days of Saturn while I can.
 
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9,448
Location
USA
6 motns ago when I still had a job GM broke this story internaly. Basicly the Saturn UAW employees agreed that in order to keep from being layed off when demand declined they would agree to be pulled back into the rest of GM's corperate structure. In return they will get a lot of new work even when it is not Saturn specific in lew of periodic lawoff's. They are also going to reintergrate the Saturn warehouse and parts division with the rest of GM SPO( Service Parts Operations) within NAO. GM wants to be able to fully make use of modular platforms and powertrains. So it looks like we are in for more badge engineering! I would expect nothing less though from GM especialy. All companys do it some but GM does it more then any other company I know of. I am sure we can all recall the Simeron(sp)! Nothing like haveing one vechile with the 7 different name and division monikers!!!
 
Messages
542
Location
South Central Texas
quote:
Simeron
Cimarron, which was a Cadillac Chevy Cavilier, if I am not mistaken. And yes, it is bad when all divisions of a manufacturer have to use all the same platforms/engines to "save developmental costs". I wish each brand of car, whether its for example, Buick-Chevy etc, or Ford-Mercury etc, or even Lexus-Toyota, would be independent from each other. But why are we to expect different. We are seeing mergers of the oil companies ala Exxon/Mobil. Its just that automakers are already "merged". Wheres Teddy Roosevelt when we need him. Its refreshing to see new(er) automakers such as Kia, Daewoo, etc., and hopefully the upcoming Chinese cars shaking things up. Competition breeds improvement. If divisions within a automaker were separate and competing with each other, we would see faster improvements and new technologies.
 
I bought a 1999 Saturn SC2 new in January of 2000. For the cost of the vehicle it has been reliable if somewhat unexciting. I have approximately 45,000 miles on it at this time and have had no real "issues". Gas miliage runs around 24 mpg in city, 30 on the highway. Oil consumption has never been an issue, just changed from dino oil to synthetic about 2,000 miles ago and its approximately 1/4 of a quart low at this point. Overall build quality has been, IMHO, average. Reliablity has been good, but to me, that is expected on a vehicle with relatively few miles. Styling is subjective of course, but again, i rate it at average. I had few expectations when i bought the car; a) wanted something that had a out the door cost around $15,000 b) decent gas miliage c) "acceptable performance" 4) decent resale value The Saturn has generally met these expectation, if in a somewhat uninspiring manner. The Ion Redline had me excited when it was announced, but overall reviews havent been awe-inspiring. darrell sin city
 
Messages
950
Location
Loveland, Ohio
I heard or read today I think...that GM was going to add a GM badge to all their brands because they felt that too many people didn't realize the individual 8 brands were made by GM!!!! [Eek!]
 
Messages
23,591
quote:
GM is going ot use saturn to launch opel cars in the US.
I hope not. Opel has produced pretty much only garbage during the past ten years. The Cadillac Catera was a rebadged Opel Vectra (same platform as Saab 9-3). Opel is in real trouble in Europe, cutting down on production and employees.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
Messages
45,974
Location
New Jersey
what was so bad about the catera? Seemed like a pretty nice little car to me. Maybe it was a little blah, or maybe it was a bit underpowered for what US markets consider (oh, yeah, $30k buys a LUXURY car... right) that they deserve for the money, but the times that I was in one, I thought it was decent. The opel shares the platform with my new-style 9-3. Its a WONDERFUL car. If the opel is anything like it, and has anywhere near the technical advancement of mine, it surely will be a good car. I drove the fuel cell version of the opel minivan. It was the perfect size for someone who wants a bigger car that isnt as big as a minivan. More utility than a small station wagon, but higher efficiency, more manuverability, etc. than a 'standard' minivan. JMH
 
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36,414
Location
ME
Have you ever been watching NBC, and that wierd ad for GE comes on that blushes over their jet engines, appliances, etc.? The ad doesn't really tout a product per se and, IMO, is meant to get people to buy up their stock. I bet you that's "filler" because they couldn't sell a real money-making commercial in that time slot. GE owns NBC. To me that says, "our sales guys can't sell nationwide prime time" and that would make me run in the other direction. I bet GM is trying to hype brand awareness so their execs with current stock options can exercise them. I remember the 80's when every GM thing had the same [GM] logo on their seat belt buckles. That said to me, "we don't care if you buckle up-- the feds made us install this universal standard equipment." If there's a GM badge on a new saturn, they darn well better allow GM card points to be spent on it. Rewards cards have also matured since the GM scheme was invented years ago.
 
Messages
9,365
Location
USA
quote:
Originally posted by eljefino: If there's a GM badge on a new saturn, they darn well better allow GM card points to be spent on it. Rewards cards have also matured since the GM scheme was invented years ago.
I was going to say the same thing! I have 1800 in GM card earnings and eyeing the saturn vue 3.5 for two years now.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
Messages
45,974
Location
New Jersey
quote:
Originally posted by drive it forever: About the Saturn Ion. Another unwise design move imo, is the instrument cluster is in the middle of the dash, angled towars the driver. I dont buy the excuse, its "safer" that saturn sales woman (I've never seen a salesman at a saturn dealer) probablly tell potential buyers. How many sales have they lost on this car because of this?
The toyota echo does this as well. Probably people curse GM/saturn for doingit, but nod their heads and praise toyota for looking out for their safety and well being, thinking up such an idea. JMH
 

JHZR2

Staff member
Messages
45,974
Location
New Jersey
Thinking about this a little bit more, I dont see how any of this really matters. Saturn was a GM car company from the start. Pontiac, chevy, GMC, buick, cadilac, who cares if it has a GM badge on it? They are, after all, GM cars, and were through and through. Being a saab owner, I have to sympathize with the saturn folks a bit. Product differentiation is what sets saab apart, and it is what set saturn apart. As I said before, I dont think too much about them being put on saturns, since it was a GM company from the start, but, then again Im not a saturn owner, so Im not as related to that end of it. The one that hurts me is to see SAAB, a non-GM company, an aircraft company, an aircraft, heavy truck and car concern, which, after a long time of innovation, got taken over by GM. Not started by GM, bought or taken over. And now those cars get GM badges. Frankly I could care less that my 9-3 is part GM. It is a hugely technologically advanced car, gives better fuel economy than many economy cars, and has the utmost in safety. If GM has their hands in that or not, it doesnt matter that much, provided that new models continue in the saab tradition. However, I do feel, as the Saturn owners do, that the brand that I likegets a little bit more mixed in with the rest of GM. If they wanted to go and put a new GM sticker on the side of my 98 chevy truck, fine. I dont care that its a GM, and wouldnt mind the badge. But to put it on a saab, and similarly a saturn; cars that are by design, different and differentiated from the rest of the company, thats a little (though IMO forgivable) black eye. I doubt its so much to evoke trust, as to evoke brand recognition of the overall GM marque. JMH
 

Kestas

Staff member
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13,945
Location
The Motor City
I agree whole-heartedly with what ToyotaNSaturn so eloquently stated. The GM board members are ignoring the real issues of product quality and found something they can present to make it appear that they are leading the company. Quality comes from top-down, not the other way. People don't really car what badge they have on their cars as long as it's a car they can rely on. He's also right about appeasing the shareholders... this is JOB 1 for all the American manufacturers.
 
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