“The Feds basically wanted to get GM down to Cadillac and Chevrolet. They said ‘you don’t need all these brands. You need one prestige brand, and one mass-market brand.’ And we said ‘well we can’t get rid of Buick because Buick is important in China, and if Buick becomes an orphan in the United States then the Chinese are no longer gonna be interested in it.’ And the Feds said ‘Fair enough, but everything else goes.’
[...] the Feds said ‘yeah, let’s just, how much money have you made on Pontiac in the last 10 years?’ and the answer was ‘nothing.’ So, it goes. And, when the guy who is handing you the check for 53 billion dollars says I don’t want Pontiac, drop Pontiac or you don’t get the money, it doesn’t take you very long to make up your mind,” Lutz said.
However, he admits that GM’s mismanagement also played an important role in Pontiac’s demise: “Mechanically, there was nothing about a Pontiac in the 1990s that would make your heart beat faster.”
Story via AutoWeek