GM says the Orlando seven-seater mini-minivan won't be built in Detroit and won't be sold in the U.S. after all.
The Orlando is based on the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze, a global compact that's coming in a little more than a year to the United States, but will go on sale next year in other global markets. And it's easy to see a clear path to victory in Europe with the van against size-wise competitors from Ford, Mazda, and the French automakers. The compact seven-seat Orlando has a sport-ute flair and a flexible interior. It also has theater-style seating, so backseaters can see the road, and GM promises those seats can be rearranged to create a big cargo area. A GM diesel engine, 2.0 liters in displacement and producing 150 horsepower, is under the hood.
For the United States, though, the slight success of the likes of the Mazda5 probably convinced GM brass more than anything that the Orlando is best left to other markets. Better to go without a minivan altogether. So van fans, in the absence of happy news, soak up some high-resolution consolation: