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Rumors of IndyCar's Danica Patrick dipping a toe into the stock car racing pool have been swirling for months, but a new report suggests that an end to the rumors is near. ESPN says that Patrick is on the verge of signing a NASCAR Nationwide Series contract with JR Motorsports, the operation owned by Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Unnamed sources that spoke to ESPN call the talks "near their final phase" and comment that it'd be a "surprise if it didn't happen." In any case, don't expect a formal announcem

According to The New York Times, General Motors has come to terms with a consortium led by industry icon Roger Penske to sell its ailing Saturn brand. The agreement, which is expected to be announced later today, will apparently see Penske add Saturn brand and its stand-alone showroom network to his existing portfolio of 310 global dealers.

As the bidding to take over over the Saturn brand from General Motors nears its conclusion, it looks increasingly likely that Roger Penske will walk away with the "prize." Regardless of who takes control, all Penske is slated to receive is a network of dealers and a brand name. GM has already announced it will cease producing new Saturn cars at the end of June 2009, which means the new owner will have to line up another company to provide products for those 380-odd stores. One of the rumors maki

Penske Automotive Group has reportedly contracted the services of former Chrysler President Tom LaSorda, who left the automaker when it filed for Chapter 11 protection on April 30th, to advise it on its possible bid to purchase the Saturn brand from current parent General Motors. Up until the year 2000 when he joined Chrysler, LaSorda had been an executive at GM.

The typical relationship between automakers and dealerships, of course, is for the dealers to sell the cars that the automaker produces. But with General Motors shedding like a dog in springtime, it's the dealers who have been looking to buy the brands themselves. Following interest expressed by German dealers to acquire Opel and a group of investors including equity firm Black Oak and the brand's own dealers to acquire Saturn, one of the country's biggest dealership groups is stepping up to the

If an emergency loan for the Detroit 3 makes it through Congress, part of the deal will be an overseer for the industry to make sure the money is spent wisely. Of course, the question is who will fill the car czar's slippers? MotorTrend editor Angus McKenzie has come out in favor of Roger Penske, an interesting choice particular considering his successful at the helm of various business endeavors, not to mention his racing teams. In the past, Penske has even been mentioned as a potential CEO of

1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 Roadster – Lot 270 Unsold at $1,550,000

Smart ForTwos outside Cobo Hall. Click the image for a high res gallery

Although he hasn't been to LeMans since the '70s, Roger Penske has apparently told AutoSport that he would 'love' to compete again at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. After taking the ALMS LMP2 class title this year with the dominating Porsche RS Spyders, it's not too surprising to hear he might want to tackle the big show too.

The Detroit Grand Prix appears to be returning to the schedule thanks to Roger Penske. Penske is going to be holding a press conference today along with Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick. AutoWeek is reporting that the race will return to Belle Isle, which last hosted a race in 2001. That was a CART race. This will be an IRL race. Plus ALMS. By including ALMS, there will be more corporate sponsorship opportunities for the race and hopefully more funding available to make it work.