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GM FastLane:Saturn Revisited

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Saturn PreVue

By Bob Lutz

GM Vice Chairman

I’m often asked about Saturn, and although I’ve talked a lot about it over the past year, it’s worth revisiting because it seems every time you turn around there’s something new to say.

Later this month, Saturn will launch the all-new Vue SUV at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The industry got a preview of it last April in New York with a concept called, ironically enough, the PreVue. And more was revealed at the Paris show in September when we unveiled its cousin, the Opel Antara.

We’ll have more details and photos of the new Vue in less than two weeks, after the L.A. introduction. We’re hoping for the same great reception that the Aura sedan has been getting — its reviews have been terrific. Generally speaking, the press recognizes not only the refinement of the Aura but also the structural integrity of GM’s global midsize architecture.

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Opel Antara

That’s the same approach we’re taking with the Vue. It will share architecture and some components with the Antara and other vehicles, but its character and design vocabulary will remain Saturn, through and through.

In GM’s new world of product development, we are leveraging global resources and strengths like never before, and the results are beginning to show more clearly with each auto show introduction — there will be more at Detroit in January, and on the rest of the 2007 show circuit.

For Saturn specifically, that means better products, and more of them. We are doubling its product lineup in the course of a year, and broadening its scope of offerings in the process. And all along, Saturn and Opel will benefit from each other’s expertise.

This will ensure that Saturn’s future products sport European design flair and sharp road-handling. They’ll have bold exterior styling, and highly refined interiors, which is an intense focus of all of GM Global Design at present.

Saturn and Opel are a natural fit. They share similar demographics and brand positioning in their respective markets. Their collaboration means that each brand will have strong, broad product lineups, created as cost-effectively as possible. And, they won’t share everything. For example, I can’t see the Opel Zafira being sold in North America, just as I can’t see the new Saturn Outlook in Europe.

If anyone needed proof that GM is ready to fight back, is willing to make the sacrifices necessary to cut costs and improve revenue, and is able to sustain this turnaround and put the best new cars and trucks possible on the road while doing so… look no further than Saturn for that proof.



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