Saturn will not sell the Smart brand, says Penske

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 29, 2010

As earlier reported, Roger Penske, the former racecar driver and owner of the second largest dealership in the US, has become the new owner of GM's Saturn brand. In an interview, Penske revealed that he plans to focus on making electric vehicles as the main goal of Saturn brand under his proprietorship.

He also silenced speculations that Saturn dealers may be forced to vend cars with the Smart brand, saying that Saturn showrooms will certainly not sell this brand. The new Saturn owner said that the government's focus on funding alternative-powered cars may thrust him to really focus on EVs under Saturn.

The agreement with GM provides for the continued production of the Aura, Outlook and Vue for Saturn at least for the succeeding three years, after which Penske can negotiate with GM to continue production models. The new owner also seeks to fill the lineup of Saturn since the Astra hatch and Sky roadster will be lost to him.

It is his intention to go global in search for products that can be brought to the US with an estimated 12-18 months before those cars will hit dealerships. He also denied talks about deals to import cars made by Renault and Samsung by pointing out that he has been in discussion with a number of car manufacturers.

Penske promised to be transparent about partnerships they make and also about fuel-efficient vehicles that will serve the current customer base. This will include a full model range with SUVs, coupes and sedans that will come within the price range available for Saturn.

Topics: saturn, smart, penske

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