GM officially down to 4 brands

In an announcement that surprised no one today, GM officially announced the end of Pontiac as a brand, by the end of 2010.  So that’s Pontiac, Hummer, Saab, and Saturn that are toast – GM is now down to 4 brands that will carry on.

Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC, and Buick are the so-called “Big 4” that will remain.  Chevy and Cadillac I see – but Buick and GMC are rebadge-brands.  With no unique product, I have trouble seeing why GM should split marketing dollars 4 ways, rather than 2.  Keep Buick in China ( for some reason they love Buicks ), but it serves no real purpose here.  Keep the good ones and make ‘em upscale Chevy’s.

Pontiac was dead anyway

The G8 is an awesome car.  I want to get that out there right away.  But people aren’t buying them – it’s a lot of coin for a Pontiac, no matter how good it is.  Perception is huge, and the perception is that Pontiacs are crap.  Based on the G3 and G5, well, the perception is true.  The brand isn’t relevant, and hasn’t been for decades.

No more GTO or Firebird

The last Goat was a turd… but the goats of old were awesome.  And who could forget the Firebird?  A badge-engineered Camaro, for sure, but still a great piece of history.  It’s sad to say that there will never be a new Firebird rolling off the production line.  Not so sad that they should keep Pontiac around though. 

Will it be enough?

Going from 8 brands to 4 is a huge step in the right direction.  But is it too little, too late?  Maybe.  Two brands is a more sustainable setup, at least in my eyes.  Hopefully I’m wrong, and GM can survive, and prosper.  Let’s see how this plays out over the next few months / years. 

Published on April 27, 2009 in GM

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