Breaking? GM Has Enough Problems, Will Not Save Ford...Did We Mention The Buick Enclave?

This image was lost some time after publication.
This image was lost some time after publication.

A non-Jalopnik member of the press asked Rabid Rick if instead of merging with Carlos "Hot Daughter" Ghosn's lineup, why doesn't GM simply merge with — and save — FoMoCo? Mr. Wagoner literally answered, "We have enough problems. We will not be saving Ford." The General does sound like it's intent on saving Buick. Brand Manager Steve Shannon reassured the assembled autojourno throngs that Buick will soon "be making real Buicks again." He went on to explain that instead of trying to put a car in every garage, they are going to only make four models. Also, instead of concentrating on rental cars fleet sales, Buick will focus on retail customers. Glad to hear they've at least claiming a focus.

Illustration for article titled Breaking? GM Has Enough Problems, Will Not Save Ford...Did We Mention The Buick Enclave?

Oh, and there was something about a car — no wait, it's a crossover. While almost totally overshadowed by the world's best golfer, the new Enclave was introduced to us hard drinking press folks when none other than Tiger himself (with Rick riding shotgun) drove through a paper banner high school football style. And... it looks like a fish with chrome teeth. I will say that the interior was nicer than I had been led to believe. And by nicer I mean it looked and felt like an Infiniti. You know; blond plastic wood and softy plastics. Beyond that, it is hard to get a sense of an S0/S1 when all of its doors are wide open and stuffed with men in bad suits holding huge cameras.

While Mr. Woods was whisked out of the building by Special Forces and Mr. Wagoner was busy with the television folks, I did manage to wrangle some face time with Buick brand guru Shannon. As I'm kind of a snotty, incompetent jerk, I hadn't planned on asking him any tough questions. I mean, Tiger had already been quizzed about their handicaps. But when a TV crew cut us off mid handshake, Mr. Shannon insisted that I continue. So be it. "What's a real Buick?" "Are you planning a halo vehicle?" "You already share platforms with Saturn and Chevy, are you going to get a rear-wheel drive platform from Cadillac or Holden?" Turns out that the word "spin" is not just a cute nickname for Jalopnik's editor in chief. In my mind, much like the Enclave, Buick's future is a big — "maybe?"

LA Auto Show Preview: Tiger Woods...Err...The Buick Enclave Is Finally Here! Huzzah! Huzzah! [Internal]



Yeah we all knew how likely a GM-Ford merger was anyway. As for the Enclave, yes it is a very pretty "crossover" and I am impressed with how fara away the design is from its platform brethren. The big question mark is, will this era of New Buicks be enough to justify the expense? I predict there be an uprising of the beancounters and service advisors to commonize "top hat" components at the next refresh... just like Cadillac, Bob Lutz has to stick around long enough to not back down and keep selling the idea of a New Buick to management and shareholders until it is ingrained in everyone's minds that Buick deserves to be unique and consumers will not settle for anything less. This is what should happen with Lincoln as well—does Chachi (Mark Fields) have the nuts and/or authority to lead the charge?