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Thread: Fate of Pontiac

  1. #21

    Default

    After 40 years of trying, they finally did it--they killed Pontiac. Pontiac is only the #3 selling nameplate in GM. I wrote an article about my next GM car
    for someone, and mentioned that under the new ownership, I do not really expect to see anything exciting, like for instance a C-8 Corvette Shooting Break, in the near future. I concluded that finding a nice southern or western body from about 1970, what ever year the first disc brakes were available on full sized cars, and dropping $5 grand into a remanufactured engine and tranny, and other things to make it a new car, for under $6 grand beat the heck out of the cost of owning and operating the New Government Motors 35 MPG car.

    John Harvey

  2. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by decotriumph View Post
    Don,

    That is a superb yet concise article on the Pontiac demise and why it should have never been allowed to happen. Thanks for the insight and for sharing it with POCI.
    Thanks, Alan- I really appreciate your support!

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Central New York
    Posts
    121

    Default Penske

    I'm still dumbfounded that Penske chose Saturn over Pontiac. You would think with all his performance and racing heritage he would have chosen the Pontiac name plate due to it's racing prowess over the years. Granted the product has turned into a corporate BMW look-a-like with the G8 body, but the performance insight was still there. I'm sure his research showed that the Saturn line was a more profitable investment for his money and sadly that is what makes the world go round. I know I would have loved the prospect of owning a newly designed "Penske Powered Pontiac"! For some reason that sounds so much better than a "Penske Powered Saturn".

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Portland In
    Posts
    781

    Default

    From my understanding Penske wasn't / isn't involved the group trying to buy Pontiac.


    I still think GM's afraid that Pontiac as a viable brand would eat a big hole in thier customer base.

    Of course this decision has chased more people off than that ever couple.

    Mike

  5. #25

    Default Korean Saturns

    Quote Originally Posted by GPCONV View Post
    I'm still dumbfounded that Penske chose Saturn over Pontiac. You would think with all his performance and racing heritage he would have chosen the Pontiac name plate due to it's racing prowess over the years. Granted the product has turned into a corporate BMW look-a-like with the G8 body, but the performance insight was still there. I'm sure his research showed that the Saturn line was a more profitable investment for his money and sadly that is what makes the world go round. I know I would have loved the prospect of owning a newly designed "Penske Powered Pontiac"! For some reason that sounds so much better than a "Penske Powered Saturn".
    From what I've seen (mostly on AutoWeek's website), Penske plans to eventually sell Korean cars made by Samsung as Saturns. He just wanted the dealer network. I'd rather not see such a fate for the venerable Pontiac nameplate.
    Alan Mayes
    Tullahoma, TN
    Southern Division Director
    1961 Ventura 2-door kustom

  6. #26

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Nixon View Post

    That being said I think I'll start buying Fords.


    Mike
    Hi Mike, looks like many agree with you

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

    Ford May Win Pontiac Buyers as GM Abandons Brand
    By Keith Naughton

    July 15 (Bloomberg) -- Ford Motor Co., the only major U.S. automaker to avoid bankruptcy, may be able to snag buyers as General Motors Co. ends production of the Pontiac brand this month, according to a survey.

    Ford was the choice of 38 percent of consumers interested in Pontiac models, CNW Marketing Research found in a June survey of 1,283 of the GM brand’s potential buyers. GM was favored by 33 percent in the survey, conducted before the Detroit-based automaker finished its bankruptcy reorganization.

    The results suggest possible gains for Ford, the second- biggest U.S. automaker, after GM pared its U.S. brands to four from eight. Retaining Pontiac buyers is pivotal to GM’s strategy to capture 18.5 percent of the auto market in the U.S., where the remaining marques had 16.5 percent of sales in June.

    “Ford has really started to gain some attention,” CNW President Art Spinella said in an interview yesterday from Bandon, Oregon, where the auto-research company is based. “Pontiac owners have gotten older, and they’re looking at Ford’s mainstream vehicles, like the Taurus and the Fusion.”

    U.S. market share for Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford last month was 17.2 percent, excluding the Volvo car line that’s being sold. Ford is benefiting from positive reviews and quality scores on new models like the Fusion sedan as well as favorable consumer sentiment for not taking a bailout, Spinella said.

    Ford’s market share may reach almost 18 percent as “a result of planning as well as the fortuitous stress” at GM and Chrysler Group LLC, which both exited bankruptcy in the past five weeks, John Murphy, an ****yst at Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch unit, wrote in a report today. Murphy, based in New York, rates Ford a “buy.”

    ‘Incremental Traffic’

    Ford marketing chief Jim Farley said the automaker is gaining buyers as “other dealers and brands are going away.”

    “We are seeing incremental traffic,” Farley said yesterday in an interview. “We’ve learned that corporate reputation can be a really big driver to get people to shop your brand. A lot of people like how we’re fixing Ford on our own.”

    GM has been the largest U.S. automaker by sales since 1931, a title imperiled by the company’s shrinkage during restructuring. Spinella said “the trend lines favor” Ford eclipsing GM by year’s end or in the first quarter of 2010.

    GM began offering “loyalty” rebates this month to customers that include discounts on Pontiac models of as much as $2,750, said John McDonald, a spokesman.

    “Pontiac is going to be around for many months to come, and we have time to work with the loyal Pontiac customer base,” McDonald said in an e-mail. GM’s brands now are Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac and GMC.

    Declining Sales

    Pontiac sales fell 42 percent from a year earlier in 2009’s first half, to 88,794 vehicles, according to Autodata Corp., a Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey, research firm. For all of last year, Pontiac sold 267,348 vehicles, a 25 percent decline from 2007.

    The Pontiac line is mostly cars, ranging from the $14,335 G3 to the $37,610 G8. Pontiac’s sporty features and relatively low prices appeal to blue-collar women, said John Wolkonowicz, auto ****yst at IHS Global Insight in Lexington, Massachusetts.

    GM, which completed its Chapter 11 restructuring on July 10, told the federal government it could be profitable with 18.5 percent of a U.S. auto market of 10 million vehicle sales. This month’s industrywide sales rate “seems” to be less than that figure, Chief Executive Officer Fritz Henderson said yesterday.

    Cash-for-Clunkers Effect

    Ford showroom traffic has risen by 10 percent to 20 percent since Congress passed a so-called cash-for-clunkers sales incentive last month, Farley said. He said sales began slowly this month as dealers and consumers awaited the July 24 start of the program, which gives buyers trade-in vouchers of as much as to $4,500 for an old auto.

    “It has been a slow start to the month because of the clunkers program,” Farley said. “We’ll see it accelerate after the 24th.”

    CNW’s survey found that 26 percent of potential Pontiac buyers would buy a car from a non-U.S. automaker. South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co. was the brand cited most often by these customers, Spinella said.

    GM failed to hold on to many Oldsmobile buyers after killing that brand in 2004, the company’s sales chief, Mark LaNeve, told reporters on a July 1 conference call.

    This time will be different, he said, because GM will use sophisticated electronic marketing techniques to target Pontiac owners and is expanding other model lines to offer alternatives.

    ‘Better Process’

    “We didn’t do as well as we would have liked on retaining Oldsmobile customers,” LaNeve said. “We’ve got a better process now because of information technology” such as targeted e-mail promotions. GM has said its Pontiac inventory may be gone by the end of March.

    With CNW’s survey conducted while GM was still in bankruptcy, consumers’ perceptions also might have been colored, McDonald said.

    “It would be natural to lean a bit negative until the outcome of the court process was certain, and there was a fair amount of negative press in the market at the time of the survey,” he said.

    Ford rose 21 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $6.05 at 4:15 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares have more than doubled this year.

    To contact the reporter on this story: Keith Naughton in Southfield, Michigan at Knaughton3@bloomberg.net
    Mike Klassen - 1995 white Bonneville SSEi

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Portland In
    Posts
    781

    Default

    I've driven Fords off and on over the years, Mainly Cougars / T-birds. They've all been good cars, MY 88 has 500k on it and is currently being driven daily by my wife as a work car.

    GM has screwd the pooch this time, the idiots running the company have no clue as to what the loyal buyer wants. With the Gov't involved it won't last long. Let's face it, any entity that can run a brothel out of business will kill a business that has inventory. It's just a matter of time.

    Ford builds a good product, has good customer service [which a lot of GM dealers lack] and they aren't involved with the Govt welfare program that GM and Chrysler are.In this area that means a lot.


    I REALLY Hope Pontiac gets sold off to the group trying to buy it. If they do and the product suit our needs they'll be the first choice again.

    From now on if I'm buying GM it'll be used. If I buy new It'll be FOMOCO.

    Mike

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