Automotive Intelligence - the web for automotive professionals and car enthusiasts
August 13, 2009
At GM’s Design Center and Milford Proving Ground, GM previewed six all-new 2010 vehicles and a glimpse of what is being introduced through the end of 2011:
Henderson also announced that as part of GM’s commitment to get closer to consumers, GM will use its FastLane blog to gather product research from both fans and critics. One pilot initiative, “The Lab,” will involve GM’s Advanced Design studio and allow users openly talk with designers about ideas and consumer-friendly technologies that were previously shared only in unbranded clinics.
In addition, Henderson said he and other executives plan to talk with consumers in other Web-based and in-person formats in the coming months. On Monday, the new GM executive committee, led by Henderson, showed off products and technologies to about 75 consumers at the GM Technical Center and the Milford Proving Ground.
“The key to restarting this company lies with GM’s customers, cars and culture,” Henderson said. “With four focused brands, we are committed to exceeding our current customers’ expectations and giving consumers plenty of reasons to choose a Chevy, Buick, GMC or Cadillac car or truck.”
Chevrolet Volt fuel economy achieves triple digits
Using development testing based on a draft U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) procedure for plug-in electric vehicles, the Chevrolet Volt is expected to achieve 230 miles per gallon or better in city driving (25 kW hours per 100 miles). The Volt, scheduled to begin production late next year as a 2011 model, can travel up to 40 miles on electricity from a single battery charge and can extend its overall range to more than 300 miles with its flex-fuel engine-generator.
The EPA test procedure for plug-in electric vehicles, which is still being finalized, assumes a single charge each day. According to U.S. Department of Transportation data (http://tinyurl.com/U-S-DOTStudy), nearly eight of 10 Americans commute fewer than 40 miles a day.
“From the data we’ve seen, most drivers could operate purely on grid electricity in a Chevy Volt,” Henderson said. “A car that gets more than 100 miles per gallon is a significant step in the reinvention of the auto industry and GM is and will continue to be a leader in that reinvention."
Cadillac confirms entry luxury sedan
Greater customer engagement
While GM has organized customer clinics and collected feedback for many years, the Web provides even greater opportunities to connect with consumers. Henderson said executives will use a combination of in-person meetings and online technology to better interact with them.
“Our customers are the reason we’re here. It’s critical to have their voices help shape our products, and their experience with them,” Henderson said. “Their feedback helps us learn and evolve so we can continuously improve our cars and trucks, and our customer relationships.”
In addition to “Tell Fritz,” a feature on www.gmreinvention.com, in which customers can provide feedback, GM will use its popular FastLane blog (fastlane.gmblogs.com) to launch “The Lab,” a microsite featuring future projects by GM’s Advanced Design team.
Interacting directly with designers, consumers can share input on designs and technologies being considered for future projects. Those who provide detailed demographic information may be invited to participate at a deeper level in future sessions.
2010 launch vehicles by Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC
GM’s four core brands are launching six all-new vehicles for 2010. Here’s a brand-by-brand look at what’s new:
Cadillac: GM’s luxury brand launches the SRX crossover and the CTS Sport Wagon into the luxury market, featuring Cadillac’s signature design and technology.
The new SRX is designed to make more inroads into the previously conservative luxury crossover category. A new, 3.0L direct injected V-6 engine is standard, and a new, 2.8L turbocharged V-6 is optional. Both feature greater fuel economy and lower emissions.
Chevrolet: The new Chevrolet Camaro returns after a seven-year hiatus. Its combination of efficient performance, which delivers up to 29 mpg highway and heritage-inspired design exemplify Chevrolet’s commitment to great design and fuel-efficiency.
The all-new Chevrolet Equinox blends distinctive design and outstanding roominess with class-leading efficiency. Chevrolet expects nearly two-thirds of customers will choose the efficient 2.4L engine – standard on all models – that delivers best-in-class EPA-rated 32 mpg highway (FWD models).
(August 11, 09)