Renault Puts Another Nail in Saturn's Coffin

Last week’s announcement that Penske had a swift and unexpected change of heart, body, mind and soul in taking over GM’s Saturn left many wondering if and with who Saturn will survive. Many hopeful eyes were looking towards Renault, identified indirectly as a possible solution for Saturn.

Renault’s answer: ain’t gonna happen...According to Frederique LeGreves, Renault's chief spokeswoman, quoted by Autonews, the numbers just don’t add up for Renault to get involved.

The business case just didn't add up. We looked at doing it. There was nothing political in our decision. It's just that the math wasn't happening.

Renault’s name came up after Penske said it is taking with another carmaker to step in and save Saturn. Although nobody officially named Renault, the friendship between Roger Penske and Carlos Ghosn left room for speculation that the French may be the ones to step in.

At that moment, we didn't have anybody signed,” Tony Pordon, Penske Group vice presindent told the source. “Yes, there are other automakers out there, but we spent four months negotiating this arrangement. It was time to sign, and we couldn't.”

The vice president also tried to put reason behind Penske’s withdrawal. ”For us to have closed this transaction with GM without a formal agreement for a supply of vehicles, we would be subjecting ourselves and our shareholders to a lot of risk.

According to Penske, the failure to acquire Saturn is "because of the inability to source new products beyond what it had asked GM to build on contract."
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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