For Sale By:Dealer
Warranty: Vehicle does NOT have an existing warranty
Exterior Color: Yellow
Interior Color: Burgundy
Number of Cylinders: 8
Eugene, Oregon, United States
We've spoken at length previously about the fallacy of poor hatchback sales in the US, and with the runaway success of its Chevrolet Cruze sedan, it's somewhat unsurprising to hear that General Motors is rethinking its decision not to sell an overseas five-door variant in North America as it looks to plug a number of holes in its lineup. GM North American President Mark Reuss admitted during a media luncheon this week that not offering the model "... was a pre-bankruptcy planning mistake," says Forbes. With the next-generation model already well-along in development, it's likely that the current Cruze hatch (shown above) won't see US dealers.
Reuss admits not offering the model "was a pre-bankruptcy planning mistake"
In what must have been a far-reaching conversation, Reuss hinted at a number of new products for many GM brands, including "a much more beautiful Panamera" range-topper for Buick (which sounds a bit like the line of reasoning the TriShield brand has been pursuing with its Riviera concepts) and a "Ford Transit Connect-fighter" to supplant the recently announced badge-engineered Chevy City Express from Nissan.
Generation Gap generally tries to adhere to a theme for each episode, and for the final video from the Lingenfelter collection, the series might have its best idea yet - limited-production muscle cars from General Motors.
On one side you get a 1969 Chevrolet Chevelle COPO, and it's an absolute sleeper. Other than the SS wheels, this classic coupe looks practically bone stock, at least until the engine fires up. Under the hood is a 427-cubic-inch (7.0-liter) V8 making a claimed 425 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. This was the sole year for the COPO package on the Chevelle, and Chevy only made about 323 of them.
The Chevelle's challenger is almost as rare and arguably just as cool. The 1987 Buick Grand National GNX looks just as mean today as when new. It eschews a traditional muscular V8 in favor of a 3.8-liter turbo V6 making a claimed 276 hp and 360 lb-ft, although that number is supposedly a bit underrated. Also, just 547 examples of the GNX version were ever built making it quite a collector's item too.
For a company with a long tradition of grand touring convertibles, it's almost unseemly that General Motors doesn't offer a properly relaxed four-seat convertible in North America. There's the Chevrolet Camaro, of course, but it's not big on rear-seat space and it doesn't offer that sort of serene demeanor that many open-air buyers crave. We're thinking of something more refined and, dare we say, elegant. Something a bit closer to the Opel Cascada.
The General's front-wheel drive convertible went on sale in Europe this year, and while it seemed like a natural fit for its Buick brand in America, it's never been sold here. That may be about to change, however. Back in June, CEO Dan Akerson hinted he'd like to see the Cascada available in the US, and now there's word from Edmunds that importation "could happen soon." That's according to an unnamed insider at the company.
It's almost unseemly that GM doesn't offer a relaxed four-seat convertible.