Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Next Generation of GM Trucks

Jeff Luke got his first pickup truck when he was a teenager and says, "I just love them." As Executive Chief Engineer for GM full-size trucks Jeff is now launching the next generation which promise to be the most refined and best engineered full-size pickups in the market.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

GM hopes new Buick Encore appeals to younger buyers

General Motors hopes to carve out a new auto sales segment with the all-new Buick Encore compact crossover, which hit U.S. showrooms last weekend.

The automaker also expects the Encore to continue the brand’s momentum among younger buyers and people who don’t own a GM product.

Tony DiSalle, vice president of marketing for Buick and GMC, said dealers are reporting “twice as many hand-raisers for Encore as for Verano” when that vehicle was released in late 2011.
The brand’s overall conquest average rose from 27% to 43% over the last half decade. More than 50% of Verano buyers are new to Buick.

“That’s part of the mission for this brand,” DiSalle said this morning. “Verano is really the conquest leader in the pack, so we’d anticipate Encore to also conquest well for the brand.”

The five-seat Encore enters a relatively new segment of small crossovers that several automakers believe will balloon in size over the next few years. GM believes it will appeal especially to young professionals and empty-nesters.

The crossover ranges in price from $24,950 for the basic model to $28,840 for the premium package with combined average fuel economy of 28 miles per gallon on the front-wheel drive version.
The Encore’s introduction comes as the average age of Buick buyers has fallen over the last five years from 64 to 57. GM says Buick is the only major brand in the U.S. to lower its average age over that time.

“Now that we’ve got a second crossover in the portfolio we’re going to see new folks again coming into the showroom,” said Lloyd Biermann, marketing manager for the Buick Enclave and Encore crossovers. “They’re going to be younger, as well.”

The Encore could compete against vehicles like the Volkswagen Tiguan and the forthcoming Fiat 500L. GM said it expects 60% of Encore buyers to be women.

“Here’s what we see at auto shows: ‘Wow, I never knew I needed one until I saw it, I didn’t know it existed,’” DiSalle said.

Built in South Korea, the Encore is badged as the Opel Mokka in the European market. In China, Buick’s biggest market, dealers ordered 6,000 Encores in the vehicle’s first month this fall.

Courtesy of Buick

Thursday, January 17, 2013

2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra show all their sides in Detroit

There could hardly be more riding on the next-generation General Motors full-size pickup trucks, so the automaker has wisely made sure to have a selection of different models on hand at the Detroit Auto Show to show off. The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and 2014 GMC Sierra were both officially introduced last month at a stand-alone reveal, and now they'll be on display for the public to see in various body configurations and trim levels.

The Silverado LTZ Crew Cab and Sierra SLE Extended Cab are aimed at providing more of a high-end pickup experience, while the Silverado LT Z71 Extended Cab and Sierra SLT Z71 Crew Cab should have off-road fans scouting out their favorite trails. The crew cab trucks won't go into production until sometime during the second quarter of this year – with other bodystyles coming later in the year.

Courtesy of Autoblog

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

GM Foundation and Buick to grant 1,100 scholarships for third year.


The Buick Achievers Scholarship Program, funded by the General Motors Foundation, will accept applications for 2013 scholarships beginning Monday, Jan. 7 through 5 p.m. EST on Thursday, Feb. 28.

This is the third year the 1,100 Buick Achiever Scholarships will be awarded to students who excel in both the classroom and in the community and are pursuing degrees in engineering, design, information technology and business-related majors in the auto industry.

The annual Buick Achievers Scholarship Program was created in 2011, and has awarded nearly $12 million in scholarships. Through the program, 100 high school or current undergraduate students receive scholarships up to $25,000 a year, renewable for up to four years and one additional year for qualified five-year engineering programs. 

A one-time $2,000 scholarship is awarded to 1,000 students.  

“Since the inception of the Buick Achievers Scholarship Program, we have provided scholarships to more than 2,000 students from all 50 states,” said GM Foundation President Vivian Pickard. “This scholarship helps to change the lives of its recipients, making it more affordable for them to receive a higher education.” 

More than 120 military veterans or dependents of military personnel and more than 1,000 students who are first in their family to attend college have received Buick Achievers scholarships.

“The Buick Achievers Scholarship has been such an amazing blessing for me and my family,” said Tommy Jones, a junior mechanical engineering major at Freed-Hardeman University in Henderson, Tenn., and a $25,000 scholarship recipient in 2012. “I’ve always had a passion for science and through this scholarship, I can pursue my dream of becoming an engineer without financial burden.”


Courtesy of Buick Newsroom

Monday, January 7, 2013

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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New Year's Resolutions For Car Owners


Happy New Year! Now’s the time when people everywhere are making New Year’s resolutions, breaking ones they’ve already set, or are setting more achievable resolutions. To inspire you, here are some fun ways the most popular resolutions can be applied to your car maintenance and vehicle care:

  • Lose weight – Are you driving around with extra “junk in your trunk” or truck bed? By removing an extra 100 pounds of clutter from your vehicle, you can improve your gas mileage by several percent. A bucket of baseballs weighs about 25 lbs, snow chains weigh at least 10 lbs a set and a set of golf clubs can weigh anywhere from 20 to 50 lbs.
  • Quit smoking – I hope you’re not driving a “smoker,” but if your vehicle is emitting too many emissions, be sure to have it diagnosed and get issues addressed quickly before you do environmental damage or fail your next emissions check. Also, be sure to report any smoking vehicles you see on the road. Most DMV websites allow you to do this anonymously by sharing the vehicle’s license plate, date, time and location you spotted the “smoker.”
  • Learn something new – Even if you don’t know a lot about car repair, you can still empower yourself. Make a resolution to learn how to check your oil, change a tire, replace a taillight bulb or use jumper cables. You never know when that extra knowledge will come in handy.
  • Save money – A great way to save money on car repair is to follow a regularly scheduled maintenance program, and address small issues early, before they become costly repairs. If you’re one of the more than 10% of drivers who have ignored that “check engine” light a little too long, resolve to get the problem diagnosed and repaired. You may be pleasantly surprised.  Loose gas caps and spark plugs are common culprits, but don’t cost much to repair.
  • Take a trip – Plan that driving trip up the coast or to a national park you’ve always wanted to visit. By putting it on your calendar now, you can set aside gas money and book those campsites early.


Courtesy of CarMD