Why Is Everything Up For Sale Except Pontiac?

May 4, 2009
The Pontiac logo

The Pontiac logo

There's no denying that the world's a little crazy right now, and nowhere is this more visible than in the auto industry. Thanks to the global economic meltdown, car makers have been streamlining and downsizing, wheeling and dealing, with brands changing hands faster than bets at a Shanghai cockfight.

With one exception: Pontiac.

Despite the old adage that "everything has its price", General Motors seems unwilling to slap a "for sale" sign on the beleaguered brand like it has with Hummer, Saturn, and Saab.  This hadn't been fully articulated until late last week when Jim Waldron--a Pontiac dealer in Davison, Michigan--got together with several of his well-heeled friends and offered to buy the brand from GM. GM's response? Pontiac isn't for sale.

Now to be fair, that came from Tom Pyden on GM's communications team, and it isn't GM's official response to Waldron's offer. (That should come in a few days.) So GM may say "yes" in the end. But as of today, the party line is that GM's restructuring plan doesn't include a provision for selling Pontiac, only phasing it out by the end of 2010.

Which begs the question: is GM up to something? Why would the ailing automaker want to hold onto a brand--and it's just the brand in question here, no factories or other physical items--when they've got someone offering cash on the barrel? Are they hoping to resuscitate Pontiac when things improve? Are they being spiteful? Could this be the basis of (yet another) dragged-out conspiracy theory film with Nicholas Cage and an unsuspecting, career-starved starlet? We'd love to hear your take on things, 'cause we're as confused as we were after watching National Treasure: Book of Secrets. Seriously.

[WJRT via Autoblog]

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