ModernCamaro.com Founder / Former Camaro Disciple
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Chicagoland, IL
GM expanding Buick line-up?
From an AP article:
Buick's high customer satisfaction rankings and its recent jump to tie Lexus at the top of J.D. Power and Associates' 2007 Vehicle Dependability Study has General Motors executives considering more vehicles for Buick.
"We think we've got room for expansion in the Buick lineup, and we see Buick over time hitting that space in the market where today Acura is, Volvo is - that's its historic position, where it's a cut above Dodge, Chrysler and Ford," said Mark LaNeve, GM's vice president of vehicle sales, service and marketing in an interview with Automotive News. "It was always a near-luxury premium car."
LaNeve said GM is considering molding the future Buick lineup to resemble Buick China's offering: "By leveraging some of the products that we're going to be introducing in China over a period of years, we can augment the Buick lineup to really slot it in a very sophisticated place in the market above the mainstream."
But Buick apparently will not get a large rear-wheel-drive car like Pontiac's G8 sedan, due early next year. Buick dealers this year rejected the model because it would overlap with the Lucerne.
Pontiac, meanwhile, will get a V-8 version of the G8 priced close to $40,000 and a V-6 version priced "well below" $40,000, LaNeve said. The mix will be skewed toward the V-6, he added.
It's built off a new rwd platform by Holden, GM's Australian unit. LaNeve says the car is aimed for the Dodge Charger, Honda Accord or Nissan Altima buyer, "who pays a little more but wants a lot more performance and a different image."
"It won't be a tremendously high-volume product," LaNeve said, "but it's going to be significant to the Pontiac brand and a real continued image boost like Solstice was for Pontiac."