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General Motors, again.

Tuesday, 17 February, 2009

In December I ranted upon these pages about how General Motors should split into two companies and so forth. So very much has either changed or come to light in two months.

Nonetheless, your humble commenter maintains the key to the survival of the many, many divisions of General Motors is dissolution of the company. Effecting my analysis is the news that Saturn and possibly Hummer are on facing elimination.

  • Yeah, kill, sell, whatever Hummer. It was a silly idea in the beginning and is now just an embarrassment. An entire division created to excite the owners of car dealerships to the exclusion of the general public.
  • Saturn could exist to sell cars to people who would normally avoid GM products as though the vehicles carried Ebola. It is very odd how after nearly twenty years the general public does not know Saturn is a division of GM. If they could handle it correctly, Saturn would not have to die. This cannot happen. With metaphysical certainty I know any attempt to expand the reach of Saturn beyond the people who used to buy Oldsmobiles shall end in utter failure. We’ll have to let it go.
  • Sell Saab. Sell it to some guy on the street for a euro, but get rid of it. Sell it to PSA for a euro. Sell it to SAIC. You don’t know what to do with Saab. You don’t know what a Saab is or used to be or could be. Let Sweden nationalize Saab. Whatever. Let it go.

I continue with my idea that Opel, Holden, Daewoo and Wuling should be rolled into another company and spun off. The new company would inherit Buick, GMC, Vauxhall, and Pontiac. They would also acquire the entire sales and service apparatus of the brands. I recommend this new company kill off Vauxhall. It’s not like they’re fooling anyone. This new company would have its global headquarters in either Opel’s executive quarters or Holden’s.

All of this spinning away and closure leaves a smaller GM, still based in Detroit, with Chevrolet, Corvette, Cadillac and On Star. All commercials and fleets are Chevrolet. Corvette becomes a separate division, as it is in most of the world anyway. Cadillac is the premium brand, of course.

By the way, the new Camaro is going to be a failure. I know this because it is exactly the wrong car at the wrong time. A proper “new Camaro” would be something along the lines of the Cobalt SS with a sleek body and modestly restyled interior. The original Camaro was a restyled Nova, after all. (Falcon and Mustang had the same relationship)

This also opens up the possibility of additional models in the Corvette line. The two vehicles which immediately come to mind are a sport coupe not so different from the Kappa models, Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky, Opel GT, and Daewoo G2X, and a super premium four-door luxury, touring car on the model of the Porsche Panamera, Lamborghini Estoque or even the Cadillac CTS-V.

God I’d love to have a couple of days with a CTS-V. Everyone loves it, and it’s GM. That dissonance is difficult. The CTS (-V) isn’t really my kind of car, but who would say no to being snowed in with the McNuggetini gals for a few days.

Holden, Opel and Daewoo on their own will not have Detroit weighing them down. I see no reason for Opel and Daewoo to co-develop their smallest models while making them available for Holden, Pontiac and possibly even Buick especially in China. Holden makes the Executive platforms, and Daewoo is all about production efficiency. All commercials imported to North America become GMC.

It’s not really that difficult.


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