In what General Motors spokesman Steve Janisse is calling a "very interesting" proposal, investor group Telesto Ventures has put in an official bid for Saturn. The consortium features a variety of backers, including Black Oak Partners LLC (a private equity group) and a number of Saturn dealers.
While the proposed deal doesn't appear to express interest in continuing to build or sell existing Saturn products over the long haul, the arrangement would apparently keep the 384-store network stocked with GM-sourced vehicles through 2011, allowing for an easier transition. According to Automotive News, Telesto's long-term vision hinges on selling vehicles from other manufacturers, primarily products from unnamed foreign companies. The plan, likened to the multi-brand approach favored by electronics giant Best Buy, would see a focus on smaller, fuel-efficient offerings that could also be sold by other outlets.
GM says a feasibility study into this program is underway, with a report scheduled for delivery to the brand's dealer body by early next week. If the deal goes through, one thing is for sure: Saturn will once again truly be "A Different Kind of Car Company," albeit not the sort that the division's founders originally intended.
[Source: Automotive News (subs. req.)]