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stratman

Feds killed Pontiac...

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The tone of the article is misleading. GM ran Pontiac into the ground, then wanted a bailout. Not the Feds fault that they looked at GM from a business sense.

It's like I said before, GM kept what was making them money. They wanted a bailout and they paid the price.

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While the end results are the same, Pontiac is gone, the real question is who choose to kill Pontiac - GM or the Feds? Bob leads us to believe it was the feds. Up to this point, it has been perceived that it was GM's choice to reduce models. Now Bob is saying that the gun was to put to GM's proverbial head, cut or die.



As I said, the result is the same. Interesting to know what there was a new GTO in the works too.


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Spin it all you want. If it were a business decision I wouldn't take business advice from the government nor GM. It's plain & simple if it were just business. You have Chevrolet as your entry division. Economical cars w/4 cyl. engines & a model w/opt V6 & a truck w/ V8. Next you'd have Pontiac as the performance/sport division. Sporty 2 door cars, turbo &/or quad 4's, V6 & V8 engine offerings. And leave the luxury to King Cadillac. 3 choices. No need for Buick or GMC trucks. They wouldn't do that because it makes sense. Pontiac should have been spun off in the 60's as an independent car company.


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Spin it all you want. If it were a business decision I wouldn't take business advice from the government nor GM. It's plain & simple if it were just business. You have Chevrolet as your entry division. Economical cars w/4 cyl. engines & a model w/opt V6 & a truck w/ V8. Next you'd have Pontiac as the performance/sport division. Sporty 2 door cars, turbo &/or quad 4's, V6 & V8 engine offerings. And leave the luxury to King Cadillac. 3 choices. No need for Buick or GMC trucks. They wouldn't do that because it makes sense. Pontiac should have been spun off in the 60's as an independent car company.

Number one issue is yes, this may have been a valid opportunity here in the US but GM is a global company. Chevy, Buick and Caddy are Global divisions of GM, they are the money makers. Pontiac was only a NORAM company/sold so it limits its long-term validity, unfortunately, in this ever turning global economy we now live in. Then in the time of the bailout "performance" was a dirty word, the mass majority wanted economy cars (not everyone is like us :( ). The government may have looked directly at Pontiac and been like "Why the --bleep-- do you have a performance division when you have the Corvette?! Kill that and we got a deal."

Unfortunately, I don't think you can go around and blame the "Feds" for this whole mess that ended up as Pontiac's demise. If you want to survive you got to trim the fat, maybe it took a 3rd party view (or even a biased anti-performance view) to make GM realize that but GM is going stronger and I think if we're patient they may bring it back down the line. What "down the line" is we'll have to wait and see.

Sidebar: Obviously, I'm not anti-Pontiac (that would be ironic :lol: ) this is just a fact I've researched and came up with and my own opinion. I personally just rather see it dead then not what we want it to be, EXCITEMENT! Interesting to see Lutz's notes on bringing it back though.

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Spin it all you want. If it were a business decision I wouldn't take business advice from the government nor GM. It's plain & simple if it were just business. You have Chevrolet as your entry division. Economical cars w/4 cyl. engines & a model w/opt V6 & a truck w/ V8. Next you'd have Pontiac as the performance/sport division. Sporty 2 door cars, turbo &/or quad 4's, V6 & V8 engine offerings. And leave the luxury to King Cadillac. 3 choices. No need for Buick or GMC trucks. They wouldn't do that because it makes sense. Pontiac should have been spun off in the 60's as an independent car company.

Buick rakes in profits from China. Why put them on the chopping block when Pontiac wasn't making the profit Buick was? GM ruined the brand by making the brands all too similar throughout the 80's and 90's. Even in the early 00's, they were just all the same under the skin, with outdated drivetrains. The F-body didn't even get REALLY nice until the LS1 came along in 1998.

GMC has huge fleet sales with commercial business accounts, like cable and satellite TV companies, repair companies, etc. The GMC Savanna van and Sierra trucks is their bread and butter, but the past four years GM has really given them something else other than work trucks to make profits with now, like the Acadia and Terrain, and let's not forget the luxurious Denali trims available on most existing models.

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There's nothing they sell at GMC that is any different than Chevy trucks though. Exactly the same underneath, and almost the same on the outside too. Nothing they couldn't offer with some options or an extra trim level on a chevy. Same thing with Buick. The reason why Buick sold so well in China was just because of the name. Their very small class of rich/priviledged people (basically their commi leaders) had bought buicks back in the day, so buicks were seen as a status symbol. Doesn't even matter to them what kind of car it is or what it looks like. Simple solution... make Pontiacs in the US and make them sporty for the American people. Take the same car to china, give it some softer bushings and drivetrain cal, maybe a different headlight/tail light treatment or something (ala chevy cobalt/Pontiac G5), slap a buick badge on it. Job done! They will still buy them because it says it's a buick. GM went about it in all the wrong way.


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There's nothing they sell at GMC that is any different than Chevy trucks though. Exactly the same underneath, and almost the same on the outside too. Nothing they couldn't offer with some options or an extra trim level on a chevy. Same thing with Buick. The reason why Buick sold so well in China was just because of the name. Their very small class of rich/priviledged people (basically their commi leaders) had bought buicks back in the day, so buicks were seen as a status symbol. Doesn't even matter to them what kind of car it is or what it looks like. Simple solution... make Pontiacs in the US and make them sporty for the American people. Take the same car to china, give it some softer bushings and drivetrain cal, maybe a different headlight/tail light treatment or something (ala chevy cobalt/Pontiac G5), slap a buick badge on it. Job done! They will still buy them because it says it's a buick. GM went about it in all the wrong way.

Thats far from the truth, gm capitalized on the market, even developed special platforms for that market thats why they buy them, not just for the badge, plus they are alot cheaper cine the chinese market cars are made their and dont need to be imported, thats why their the best selling luxery brand in china

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I will add one more thing about Buick's in China. It is part of their culture. It is considered a huge status symbol. To the Chinese, a Buick is considered more prestigoius than a Cadillac or Lincoln or Mercedes. Buicks have been on the streets of China since 1912. The last emperor Po Yi and several prominent Chineese officials and dignitaries owned one. Prior to WWII, one in five cars in China were Buicks. So this set the stage in Chinese culture (pre-Mao) that Buick's were luxurious cars. After all,it if was good enough for the emperor....it is good enough for the common man, right?



Now in 1999, GM starts selling Buicks again in China. The Chinese know that Buicks, from reputation, are luxurious cars and begin to purchase them. So it is a combination of history, culture and a succesful business model that has allowed GM to sell Buick's so well in China. THe emperor's Buick sill exists. It resides in the Forbidden City to this day. I saw it on a visit to Beijing in 2000. So Buick's are highly prized automobiles in China.


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And over here, they are old persons cars. lol



They haven't made a good buick since the grand national IMO. Their current "sporty" models such as the Regal GS fall far short of expectations.


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And over here, they are old persons cars. lol

They haven't made a good buick since the grand national IMO. Their current "sporty" models such as the Regal GS fall far short of expectations.

Buick is a luxury car, not a sports car. Today the two have blended that you expect performance from a luxury car, that isn't always true or wanted.

Buick fills a niche that is a lower end luxury and it has some "sporty" models to overcome today's "performance" wants, I wouldn't turn down a Lacrosse or a Regal if offered. I think Buick has made leaps and bounds (like the rest of GM) above what they used to be. They are no longer an "old person" car.

GMC is very similar, their fleet sales are what keep them in business but like in case of my parent's Terrain, even though it is technically an Equinox, you get the feeling of more luxury and better styling than from the Equinox plus some other improvements like handling and driving comfort. Yet we got the Terrain for less than what the Chevy dealer would go for less equipped Equinox O.o

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I know that truthfully, what really killed Pontiac, was GM's complete incompetent mismanagement of the Pontiac brand in the '80s and '90s. If only Mr. Lutz had worked at GM at least a decade earlier, before the Pontiac became lingered in mediocrity and became too damaged to salvage, Pontiac would still be relevant in the years going forward. His vision of Pontiac truly being a cheaper alternative to BMW performance could've come to fruition in the mid '90s. I just wish that the Feds had given GM maybe five years for Lutz to turn Pontiac back into GM's performance division again. But I don't think they were interested in low volume performance cars, only high volume "sensible" cars (it's amazing that Corvette was allowed to live).


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I know that truthfully, what really killed Pontiac, was GM's complete incompetent mismanagement of the Pontiac brand in the '80s and '90s. If only Mr. Lutz had worked at GM at least a decade earlier, before the Pontiac became lingered in mediocrity and became too damaged to salvage, Pontiac would still be relevant in the years going forward. His vision of Pontiac truly being a cheaper alternative to BMW performance could've come to fruition in the mid '90s. I just wish that the Feds had given GM maybe five years for Lutz to turn Pontiac back into GM's performance division again. But I don't think they were interested in low volume performance cars, only high volume "sensible" cars (it's amazing that Corvette was allowed to live).

Hit the nail on the head. From the late 80's and the 90's...what's really memorable from Pontiac? The F-body? The Firebird didn't really become muscle car-like until the LT1 was put into them.

Take my Grand Am for example...It had a 3.4L V6, with 175HP. By the time my car was new, Japanese and Euros had six cylinders making 225-250HP stock with equal or better gas mileage...PLUS, the option of a manual. The average Pontiac with a V6 never had options for a manual.

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As far as I know, GM retained the rights to the Pontiac name, even though I heard a buyout was offered by someone who could have spun it independent. So, and maybe it's just the wishful thinking of a Pontiac lover, but if the time ever becomes right again(and there's decent management involved) Pontiac may not be lost forever. And if it truly is, all the more important to enjoy the ones we have left.


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If I win the lottery...Pontiac will rise again!



Of course, I haven't bought any lottery tickets so chances are extremely slim that I'll accomplish this.....


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And over here, they are old persons cars. lol

They haven't made a good buick since the grand national IMO. Their current "sporty" models such as the Regal GS fall far short of expectations.

The Grand National and GNX return in 2015 as RWD cars off the ATS platform. GN will be natural aspirated or turbo V6 powered. GNX will be twin-turbo V6 powered.

There's nothing they sell at GMC that is any different than Chevy trucks though. Exactly the same underneath, and almost the same on the outside too. Nothing they couldn't offer with some options or an extra trim level on a chevy. Same thing with Buick. The reason why Buick sold so well in China was just because of the name. Their very small class of rich/priviledged people (basically their commi leaders) had bought buicks back in the day, so buicks were seen as a status symbol. Doesn't even matter to them what kind of car it is or what it looks like. Simple solution... make Pontiacs in the US and make them sporty for the American people. Take the same car to china, give it some softer bushings and drivetrain cal, maybe a different headlight/tail light treatment or something (ala chevy cobalt/Pontiac G5), slap a buick badge on it. Job done! They will still buy them because it says it's a buick. GM went about it in all the wrong way.

The reason GMC stayed was because it required very little added capital investment to make a Chevy into a GMC, and it sold well to a more upscale client (read - more profitable than Chevy) with products like the Yukon Denali over the Tahoe. The government was amazed at how just how profitable GMC was and permitted GMC to stay and demanded Pontiac to go. Keeping GMC, in the end, was a no brainer.

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^ Bingo. People are very unaware how much GMC sells well.

As for the upcoming GN, I can only hope it's as awesome as the ATS. GM really shows what it can do with Caddy.

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What killed Pontiac was blending all the brands to one instead of letting them do there on thing and GM would of made money with all of them.


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GM was so obsessed with saving money and cutting costs, their platform sharing and rebadge engineering eventually caught up and bit them in the ass. Hard.

I mean, other companies platform shared models, but you'd never know with most of them. GM made it painfully obvious.

Remember the Pontiac G5/Pursuit? Zero effort to restyle them from the Cobalt. At least the Saturn Ion looked different from its Delta platform sibling...

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Very true. They had and opportunity to even sell the hummer brad name and did nothing.


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^ Bingo. People are very unaware how much GMC sells well.

As for the upcoming GN, I can only hope it's as awesome as the ATS. GM really shows what it can do with Caddy.

The Grand National is suppose to have either a 2.0-liter four cylinder turbocharged engine with the ability to develop 272 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. Also, there will be a an optional 3.6L V6 naturally aspirated engine that will be capable enough to generate up to 320 hp and 274 lb-ft of torque.

The GNX model will be available exclusively in black. It will be powered by a twin-turbo 3.6L V6 engine developing approximately 400 hp (no torque figure was given). It is expected that GNX models will be available with manual and automatic transmissions and possibly all-wheel drive.

GM has not announced pricing of either model yet. The GN is expected to come out first, follow shortly by the GNX. So the GNX could slide in 2016.

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We can look to the XTS V for what the 3.6L twin turbo will do, since it's getting the same engine, and GM has boasted 435HP for the XTS V, IIRC...

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Very true. They had and opportunity to even sell the hummer brad name and did nothing.

I disagree.They were forced by circumstance to close the brand. GM tried to sell Hummer to the Chinese company Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Company Ltd twice, starting in 2009. Once outright, then through Sichuan's private equity fund company J&A Tengzhong Fund SPC, Reuters reported that the Chinese Ministry of Commerce had prevented the initial deal, although the ministry denies it. This stalled the talks for over eight months. Both deals fell through because investment capital in those days was extremely hard to come by for established companies like GM. Western investment banks had not heard of Sichuan or the Tengzhing Fund before, so they didn't get the capital to buy Hummer.

An American company, Raser Technologies, tried next to buy Hummer after the Chinese deal(s) failed. However, the same problem, the lack of securing investment capital, caused this deal to fall through too. By the time this all happened, it was April 2010. Hummer only had 2,200 vehicles left in inventory. Hummer dealerships were shutting down. So GM was forced to shutter the entire brand at that point since the production lines had already been stopped for some time.

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We can look to the XTS V for what the 3.6L twin turbo will do, since it's getting the same engine, and GM has boasted 435HP for the XTS V, IIRC...

Knowing GM brand managers like I do, I suspect the Cadillac V twin-turbo motor will be tuned and/or adverstised for more HP and torque then the Buick version of essentially the same engine, simply because Cadillac is higher in the GM (executive) pecking order than Buick. Thou shalt not beat Cadillac or Corvette !!!!

I am sure someone with an engine calibration kit will figure out the differences between the two and then sell us the suped up version via a SuperChips / BullDog / HyperTech programmer for $300/400 a crack soon enough.

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People will have to tinker with them first and crack the PCM's coding so they can remap them, change boost, etc. Shouldn't be too hard for most speed shops to figure out.

An engine like that, just opening up the exhaust, beefy intercooler, remap the PCM and crank up the boost a bit, I could see these kicking over 500HP to their rear or all four wheels.

I want to see an AWD twin turbo GNX sooooooooooo bad.

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