• Dec 27th 2006 at 8:06PM
  • 35
OK, so Bob Lutz might be doing a lot to save GM (or not, depending on who you ask), but one GM division that is really trying to regain its former glory is Buick. Chevy is the mainstream division. Pontiac is performance. Saturn is the import beater (but with all the Opels in their showrooms, they are migrating towards the old Olds territory of Euro alternative). Cadillac is the American Mercedes and BMW fighter. And Buick is... uhhh... affordable luxury? No, that would be near luxury, like Acura. But isn't that where Cadillac is with the CTS? Buick is... well, Buick WAS like Mercury, a step between common and luxury. Gradually it has taken over the retiree ride demographic that has a loyal but dying customer base.

So what to do? Products like the new Enclave are cool, but the Lucerne is a bit of a letdown compared to something like the Chrysler 300. And the LaCrosse, Terraza, Rainier, and Rendezvous aren't exactly, well, good. So Buick could use a boost. Something to redefine and reinvigorate the brand. Something that might get people excited about owning a Buick. Something like the 2008 Buick GNX. Never heard of it? Well, that's because it's a figment of Popular Hot Rodding's imagination.

[Source: PHR via GM Inside News]

Their GNX concept is what they propose as "the first step toward bringing Buick back to its former glory." Based on the new rear-drive Zeta platform that will underpin the new Camaro and several large sedans, this new model features independent suspension all around and could lead Buick back towards its former performance luxury image. Although there is a whole range of trim levels proposed, the best is the badass GNX shown above. It looks like it could pass for the new Maserati Coupe. Powering it is the 400-hp LS2 V8 coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission. Perhaps a stick would be a better fit, but this is their well-thought-out plan, not ours. They even go so far as to suggest it could be built on the same Holden assembly line as the GTO, with a higher trim level to justify its $1,500 surcharge. It's a fun idea and worth some further investigation.

Click the read link for more details about this PHR proposal and a larger pic.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      I really have to object to this post on the grounds of naive, gullible stupidity. The author wrote:

      Chevy is the mainstream division. Pontiac is performance. Saturn is the import beater (but with all the Opels in their showrooms, they are migrating towards the old Olds territory of Euro alternative)...

      So Pontiac is niche, not mainstream? Chevy doesn't sell performance products? Really? Because it seems to me that about half its models have "SS" affixed to them. The word "Corvette" keeps coming to mind. What's a Pontiac G5?

      Saturn's the import "beater"? What, Chevy and Pontiac aren't competing against Toyota and Honda? What planet are you from, anyway? On what planet is Saturn "beating" imports?

      And what, for the love of Christ, do you mean when you say that Buick is "migrating" toward the "territory" of "euro alternative." What in God's name is "euro alternative"? It's either a vacuous tautology or, more likely, you're just regurgitating marketing spin as you were for the rest of this post.

      I like Autoblog, you frequently do fine work, but this post grates on me like a cheese grater. Your job is to be a JOURNALIST, not to vomit up marketing slogans.

      Chevy and Pontiac are indistinguishable in their lineups in terms of "mainstream" vs. performance. Saturn beats few imports by any measure, and it appears that your brain simply turns off when you speak about it, because here's a news flash: Chevy and Pontiac also need to compete with imports.

      "Euro alternative" is a concept so thoroughly deceptive and empty you should banish it from your vocabulary forever.

      I'd recommend, seriously, that you put a great deal more thought into future posts.
      • 8 Years Ago
      What Buick needs to become is a cheaper alternitive to Lexus, smooth ride, refined quite interior, and a exterior that looks upscale. Forget having the driving dynamics of a BMW, thats for Cadillac to persue. What would be ideal, would be a smaller car (3 series size) starting at 24-28K ,a midsize car(Audi A6 size) possibly sigma based from 32-36K, a large car(Lexus LS size) in the 40-50K range and of course a this beautiful GNX. This is all of course assuming that GM will make Cadillac more upscale, having a DTS replacement in the 60-70K range.
      • 8 Years Ago
      if they make a new gn, or gnx, it should not under any circumstances look like that (above)
      • 8 Years Ago
      Never Never Ever get behind a Buick, you'll be going slow forever. hehehe. On another note, I see alot of Avanti in that picture and BMW 635CSI.not sure that's a good mix...the front just doesn't look finished, or looks old or something...not quite sure
      • 8 Years Ago
      As a Grand National owner...I have to say that Im not impressed with the car pictured. Looks to cookie cutterish, like everything else on the road.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The overall shape of this car is exactly what Buick needed 5 years ago. Now take it as though we have had it all that time and design its replacement but when you do lets give Buick a new direction for its grill work. Enough with the waterfall virtical fine line grills. And while we're at it I think its time for a new MUCH MORE contempory badge and I don't meen anything as cheesey as what was done with Oldsmobile. Maybee something that resembles what Chrysler and Cadillac did with a very seriouse makover of the old or original badge.

      What ever new Buicks end up being the key to success will be in the look the ride the handleing and the feel of a much finer product than exists today. Anything less will doom the make to failure. Like the Chrysler 300C all future Buick products must be in your face love it or hate it designs because when you have that kind of design the love its buy it and they don't ask for discounts and that's what builds an icon.
      • 8 Years Ago
      This is amazing! The coolest new GM car I have seen in years! If they make it, I'd seriously consider it.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Can you attach the new 6 speed slushbox to the Pontiac GTO and thereby improve it's performance and gas mileage?
      • 8 Years Ago
      GM should take the CTS platform and turn it into a coupe/convertible for Buick
      and sell it at $ 23.000. It might be expensive to build and develop but that is needed to liven the brand up. Buick will fail if it continues to be a re-badage special. GM has so much money, I just never understood why it is so difficult to come up with such a nice design? The German and every other foreign name plate
      has studios in the US and around the world, why can't Buick do the same?
      • 8 Years Ago
      mazda rx-8 photochop
      • 8 Years Ago
      Like that other commercial says, "just do it!"

      Seems that very rarely does a really cool car concept get actually produced as it ought to and also seems that when its happened its been a winner everytime.
      • 8 Years Ago
      "that has a loyal but dying customer base"

      Haha. You ppl make Buick dealerships sound like elephant graveyards with bones piled high and stuff. I think I see as many old people hogging the left-lane in Camrys as Buicks.
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