UAW Contract Leaks GM's Product Plans (Volt, Holden Torana, CTS coupe)

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by TriShield, Sep 29, 2007.

  1. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    GM product plans unfold in pact

    September 29, 2007
    BY MARK PHELAN
    FREE PRESS COLUMNIST

    The new contract with the UAW provides an unprecedented look into GM's future product plans, replete with goodies like the production date for the revolutionary Chevrolet Volt and groundbreaking new models for Cadillac and Saturn.

    Here are a few first impressions:

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    • The Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant goes from the endangered-species list to a very bright future. At least in part as a reward for its consistently high quality, Hamtramck will be the first plant to build the electric-drive Volt, which could be exported around the world. GM expects to sell at least 100,000 Volts a year from day one.

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    Hamtramck will also build a new compact minivan similar to the popular Opel Zafira that's one of GM's leading European models. Saturn is almost certain to get a version, and Chevrolet could, too.

    • The ability to also build a midsize Chevrolet in Hamtramck suggests the plant will be flexible to build cars from two different platforms. That kind of flexibility is one of the keys to Honda's and Toyota's success.

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    • In more good news for Michigan manufacturing, the Lansing plants that build crossover SUVs and Cadillacs will get key new models. Lansing Delta will add a Chevrolet crossover (replacing the Trailblazer and Uplander minivan) to the Saturn Outlook, Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia it already builds.

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    Lansing Grand River will become Cadillac Central, adding coupe and station wagon versions of the extraordinary CTS. People who have seen the coupe planned for 2009 say it is stunning.

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    Lansing Grand River becomes the second plant to produce GM's eagerly awaited Zeta family of midsize and large rear-wheel-drive cars when it adds two models in 2011. They will probably be full-size cars for Cadillac and Buick (Park Avenue). The first Zeta model in production will be the Chevrolet Camaro in Oshawa, Canada, in 2009.

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    • Buick will get a new midsize sedan from GM's Fairfax plant in Kansas beginning in 2010. Fairfax will keep building the Chevrolet Malibu and Saturn Aura, and will add what the agreement calls a "Chevrolet large four-door notchback" in 2010. That sounds like a replacement for the underappreciated Malibu Maxx hatchback that went out of production there this year.

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    Lordstown, Ohio, will remain home base for GM's small cars, producing several models from GM's global Gamma program in 2010. The cars will definitely include the replacement for the Chevrolet Cobalt and could include models for Pontiac (G4) and Saturn (Astra production moved to the US).

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    Lordstown gets great news when it adds production of a new line of rear-wheel-drive cars smaller than those built in Lansing. The lineup will include a hot Cadillac to take on the BMW 3-series, and one or more others for Buick, Pontiac (G6 based on the Holden Torana concept) or Chevrolet.

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    Hummer will add a pickup version of the Transformers-cool H3 SUV in the next couple of years. That's good news for the Shreveport, La., plant building the H3, but the plant will lose the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickups in 2011.

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  2. ronk

    ronk New Member

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    :bowdown:

    Awesome....

    MI finally looks like it can start it's comeback...
     
  3. MeanGreen

    MeanGreen New Member

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    Looks like the next few years is going to bring some long awaited surprises. I can't wait to see what the cts couple looks like. Maybe a ctsv coupe :noes:
     
  4. MeanGreen

    MeanGreen New Member

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    And i never thought I would say it, but thoes are two Buicks that I could see myself driving. Espically the one that looks like the g8 and is sold in China. That think is fucking PIMP on the inside.
     
  5. Dannycam

    Dannycam New Member

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    :) lets hope for no speedbumps in the way
     
  6. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    100,000 Volts a year? Wow. That's pretty ambitious for a car as out-of-the-ordinary as that. More power to 'em if they can do it without degrading quality (most importantly in terms of battery lifetime). I honestly thought I'd never see the day when GM would put the Volt into production.
     
  7. High Voltage

    High Voltage Guest

    the volt will fail. they would wait for the next gen of batteries to come out before releasing it.
     
  8. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    Holden will help on 3 Series rival, says GM

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    Bob Lutz says Holden will help design the new car. Picture: Michael Clayton-Jones

    Barry Park, The Age, 10/10/07

    General Motors vice chairman Bob Lutz says Holden will play a major role in the design of a new mid-size rear-wheel-drive car – and would be a logical beneficiary of such a vehicle. .

    Holden will help build General Motors' next generation of rear-wheel drive (RWD) mid-sized cars. Bob Lutz, the vice-chairman of the global car maker, confirmed to Drive that Holden's design team would be an integral part of GM's plans to build the new model, which should go on sale in 2011.

    Mr Lutz said Holden, an acknowledged expert on making RWD cars, would help GM with the new car's design.

    It was a very hands-on trip for Mr Lutz. After flying in from Hawaii, he spent Tuesday morning out at Holden's proving ground at Lang Lang, driving a number of cars including the VE ute and an almost production-ready Chevrolet Camaro.

    The Camaro - it will be built in Canada and sold in the US - and Holden's Commodore family car share the same Australian-designed chassis.

    On Thursday evening, Mr Lutz and his executive team travelled in Elfin sports cars - a vehicle Mr Lutz had not seen since the 2004 concept car that relaunched the marque - to the building housing the Fox Classic Car Collection, the personal car collection of transport magnate Lindsay Fox, for dinner.

    Mr Lutz said two cars were planned to come off the Alpha platform, as the mid-sized platform will be known.

    He said the Pontiac-branded car designed by Holden would be equivalent to a BMW 3 Series in ride, steering and handling, although at a much cheaper price.

    He said GM was trying to break away from the US mould of building mainly front-wheel drive cars, and moving towards four-cylinder rather than V6 engines. ''Everybody has highly competent front-wheel-drive sedans, and they all look more or less the same,'' Mr Lutz said.

    ''I'm a firm believer that if you want to grab market share you have to do something different.

    ''Everybody else is doing small front-wheel-drives, which are excellent cars.

    ''But hey, let's do something different for Pontiac; Pontiac wants to be a sporting RWD brand. ''We have several brands that would be potential beneficiaries of a small RWD car, Holden obviously being one of the logical ones.''

    Holden displayed a Torana-sized concept car at the Sydney motor show in 2004.

    Called the TT36 Hatch Concept, Mr Lutz said the car was about the right dimensions for the Alpha platform, but the concept car used parts from the now-redundant Commodore platform.

    GM's plans for a global small RWD car were spoilt after it revealed future plans about its products to the United Auto Workers, the US union representing employees of car-making companies in the US, as part of delicate pay negotiations. The United Auto Workers then published the details.

    Mr Lutz also confirmed that the strong Australian dollar was upsetting Holden's plans to sell large RWD cars into the US.

    He said the push to sell the Holden VE Commodore to the US rebadged as a Pontiac G8 would continue, but a bid to sell the VE ute would stay on hold.

    Holden is able to sell the Commodore to the US after developing it on a new global RWD architecture for GM.

    Mr Lutz was in Australia for two days as part of a quick visit to the car-making giant's overseas branches.

    He flew out of Australia yesterday to tour other GM sites in South Korea and China.

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  9. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    Holden Torana hopes boosted

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    A smaller, locally made brother for the Commodore is looking more likely than not after General Motors' workers union leaked plans for a mid-size rear-wheel-drive vehicle in 2011

    Jez Spinks, drive.com.au, 04/10/07

    Future General Motors product plans have been leaked comfirming a mid-size rear-wheel-drive vehicle that could revive the Holden Torana for the 21st century.

    The closely guarded plans were unexpectedly revealed by the UAW union after it reached a tentative agreement with GM following a two-day strike mainly concerning job security.

    According to a document leaked on the internet, GM's commitments to the UAW include a "Global Alpha" vehicle to be built from 2011.

    Alpha is a new medium-sized, rear-wheel-drive platform said to be under development by Holden for General Motors.

    This revives speculation that the Holden Torana concept car shown at the 2004 Sydney motor show could be headed for showrooms.

    The Torana boasted aggressive rear-wheel-drive styling and a twin-turbocharged V6 engine with 280kW of power.

    When it was unveiled, the Holden Torana concept sparked speculation that GM would build a prestige mid-sized luxury car.

    According to the leaked UAW report, the “Global Alpha” vehicle would be built in "2 styles". Best guesses are that the two styles hinted at would include a lower-cost version and a premium-priced version.

    Adhering to GM's global planning aspirations the Torana would wear a number of badges, including North American brands such as Cadillac, and other brands such as Holden.

    Holden spokesperson John Lindsay is tight-lipped on whether GM is indeed working on the Alpha platform and what role Holden will play in its development.

    "This is something we definitely wouldn't comment on regarding future plans, future products. It's not something I'm able to get into, or add to," says Lindsay.

    Industry speculation says the Alpha platform can underpin vehicles ranging from 4300-4600mm in length. The
    Holden Commodore (Omega) is 4894mm long; the Toyota Camry, a key mid-sized car, is mm long. The Holden Torana concept was 4653mm long.

    The Alpha's wheelbase is also reported to be about 2800mm, 44mm shorter than the Holden Torana concept and 115mm shorter than a Commodore's but plenty long enough for good interior space.

    The Global Alpha would be produced at the car maker's Lordstown, Ohio, plant in the US.

    That increases speculation that a Holden Torana could be built in America and exported to Australia.

    Engines for the GM mid-sized car will comprise only four and six cylinders only, keeping V8s exclusive to bigger GM vehicles (including the Commodore) for differentiation.

    Holden reluctant to confirm Torana is go

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    Despite public confirmation that Holden will play a lead role on the forthcoming 'Torana' platform, Holden's Chris Gubbey is playing coy, reports

    Glenn Butler, drive.com.au, 11/10/07

    Holden boss Chris Gubbey has tempered Australian expectations surrounding the nascent Torana project after GM product boss Bob Lutz confirmed that Holden would play "a major role" in the design and development of the mid-size rear-drive architecture for GM.

    "We're a global rear-wheel drive centre of excellence, so we're in with as much of a shout as anybody else," he told media at the Sydney motor show today.

    Rumours that Holden would develop a mid-size rear-drive platform for GM have been buoyed by leaked product plans and Bob Lutz's public endorsement of Holden's lead role on the project.

    Gubbey confirmed that Lutz was one of a group of top level GM executives visiting Holden in Australia earlier this week.

    "Bob was here earlier this week, along with Ed Wellburn, the global head of design, who had come out to see what we're really capable of.

    "I can tell you they all went away very excited by what they saw."

    Gubbey was more circumspect when asked if Holden would build vehicles off the new architecture.

    "I wouldn't want to comment on architectures and what the potential is. An awful lot of work is done here on global programs. So the fact that Holden is involved in that doesn't mean that [production models] will come here."

    Future product information given to the powerful UAW in North America as part of negotiations was leaked by the union body. It revealed more than a dozen GM new model plans, including the addition of a mid-size rear-wheel drive platform to rival the BMW 3 Series.

    Pontiac was named as a recipient of the platform, possibly for a sedan to sit under the Australian developed and designed Pontiac G8 - which is based on the Holden VE Commodore. It's likely that Holden would look at building a vehicle of its own off the architecture.

    Gubbey said the Elizabeth plant is capable of running a non-Commodore second model through its General Assembly and Paint Shop lines, but that "it depends on the variability of design as to whether you need to put in a separate body shop. We have the flexibility to consider those sort of options."

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  10. BigT

    BigT LSX Crew

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    i've heard the volt will not be built in Hamtramck
     
  11. cctyler

    cctyler Mornin'

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    I try to follow the auto industry as much as I can, but I feel like I can confidently say Lutz > * .
     
  12. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    Lithium-cobalt batteries are pretty much perfection at this point. All they need to last a long time is to have a computer that monitors their charge-discharge cycle and keeps them from getting fried or drained. I'm pretty sure GM will include one, and if they don't then I shall laugh a most cynical laugh.

    (btw...you were wrong about the Prius too. So was GM. They know better now.)
     

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