Chinese-market Buicke Excelle – Click above for high-res image gallery

As July's By The Numbers showed us, American buyers are quick to forget the pain of having to fill up a full-size pickup or SUV when gas prices are in the $4-per-gallon range. Without the guiding hand of Uncle Sam pushing the car-buying public towards smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles, consumers are all about being large and in charge in the passing lane. But According to Automotive News, General Motors is keen to the fact that fuel won't stay cheap forever, and to prepare for a returning tide of buyers rushing to small cars when oil goes sky high again, the company is planning a more diminutive product lineup.

If the Automotive News article is on its mark, we can expect to see a new compact Buick called the Verano as well as a hybrid version of the Lacrosse. There's no telling exactly which architecture the baby Buick will use for its bones, but the Chevrolet Cruze wouldn't be a bad bet in our eyes. Likewise, GMC will see the introduction of a production version of the Granite concept and Chevrolet should have the all-new Aveo join its ranks along with the Spark city car. Automotive News even says that The General is planning to shrink the Impala. Sounds good to us, but when it comes to Buick, these small-car rumors crop up nearly every year.

[Source: Automotive News]

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