GM's Bob Lutz Speaks
Thought this was an interesting article. Of special note is Lutz
saying the 2005 GTO is sold out... all 18,000 (their target) are sold.
And that's good news for us RWD performance fans.
By Bob Lutz
GM Vice Chairman
It's been great to read all the Solstice comments in response to Lori
Queen's posts. I'll just say that Lori and I appreciate your
patience. You won't be sorry you waited once you have one. I also
noticed that amid the Solstice discussion, that issue of rear-wheel
drive arose again, so I'd like to take the opportunity to address
that one more time, along with a couple other questions I was asked
About potential GM rear-wheel-drive products: First of all, for those
who say GM is overcommitted to front-wheel-drive, I'd say that's
not quite true. We have the small rear-wheel drive architecture that
will spawn the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky. We have the Cadillac
CTS, STS and SRX, three excellent rear-drive vehicles. And of course we
have the Chevrolet Corvette and the Cadillac XLR. And the rear-wheel
drive 2005 Pontiac GTO is practically sold out, despite initial worries
of whether it would ever reach its targeted volume of 18,000 a year.
Right now on the West Coast they just don't have enough of them to go
around, because it's such a great car to drive. So there's a whole
host of rear-wheel-drive cars that we have already.
We're fully cognizant of the advantages and disadvantages of
rear-wheel drive versus front-wheel drive. We know that rear-wheel
drive for the enthusiast driver produces a greater and more visceral
sense of control. That isn't to say that you can't do a great
front-wheel-drive car, and we certainly do a lot of those, with great
But there is something very appealing about a rear-wheel-drive car, and
it's not lost on us. We have not at all abandoned our hopes and
dreams for rear-wheel-drive passenger cars - we've just stopped
work on one particular program. Does that mean there won't be another
and a better program to follow that one? No. Has the current trend
toward nostalgia vehicles escaped us? No. Are we studying this
phenomenon? Yes. That's all there is to say about it at this time.
Also, someone asked me if I had to buy any car under $30,000, what
would it be? I think, and I'm not just being a homer, I would go with
the Pontiac Grand Prix GXP, which is just south of $30,000, and a
terrific vehicle to drive. I would also give strong consideration to
the new Chevy Impala SS V8.
Finally, I was also asked what I'm driving currently... Right now
I'm driving a test-fleet preproduction Solstice, a Hummer H3 and a
preproduction Pontiac G6 coupe with the 3.9-liter V6. I'm sort of
rotating through these vehicles, and enjoying myself very much. We get
stopped a lot, both with the G6 coupe, and especially with the
Solstice. People really like the looks of that G6 coupe - it does
stand out. With the H3, it's interesting, because people do a
double-take. At first they think it's an H2, but then suddenly it
dawns on them that it's smaller than that. It's fun to watch.
It's probably more fun to watch than to read about. But the H3 is
doing very well right out of the gate right now, so I'm confident
that you'll have a chance to witness the phenomenon in person soon.
Let me know what you think.