Friday, July 17, 2009

Lutz Backtracks, Pontiac G8 Won’t Become Chevrolet Caprice After All


BARELY A WEEK ago, GM’s new product chief Bob Lutz was telling the world that the Pontiac G8 would be born again as a Chevrolet Caprice. Now, it appears that’s not the case.

Lutz has announced on his Fastlane Blog that the “G8 will not be a Caprice after all”, and that the idea of bringing back the Commodore-based vehicle to the USA had been scuttled due to the lack of a substantial business case.

“I’d mentioned it, and said we were studying it, giving it a serious look, because a car like the G8 was just too good to waste,” Lutz said.

“That’s all still true. But I have to say that, with my new “marketing” hat on, upon further review and careful study, we simply cannot make a business case for such a program.

“Not in today’s market, in this economy, and with fuel regulations what they are and will be.”


Lutz stressed that the ditching of the Caprice plan didn’t mean General Motors was giving up on rear-wheel-drive, but that prevailing market conditions and tightening emissions legislation made such vehicles difficult to justify.

He did, however, say that GM would be revisiting the RWD issue in the future.

“We have a tremendous RWD team in Australia that gave us the beloved G8, a team that we will tap into at some point again in the future for its expertise and sheet metal,” he said.

“Just not right now.”