Posts from ‘General Motors’
Just a thought: What if the 1974 Pontiac GTO was never actually named “GTO?” What if, instead of disappointing GTO loyalists, this extensively upgraded compact Pontiac had instead been called the Ventura GT?
What was the Cadillac V8-6-4? A glib response to this question might be, “a joke,” “a mistake,” or “ a mechanic’s nightmare.” And while the Caddy-exclusive engine was inarguably fraught with glitches, a more circumspect reply might be, “a flawed technological marvel that was about a decade ahead of its time.”
The Chevrolet Vega was meant to be a technical and efficiency tour de force. The good-looking, lightweight little car featured a number of cutting-edge features, and was positioned to prove that the Bow-Tie Brand—and on a broader scale General Motors—was in a position to take on the low-cost and fuel-efficient imports that were starting to show up in dealerships at the beginning of the Seventies.
Pontiac of Canada was well known for selling gently tweaked variations of Chevy products for exclusive distribution north of the border. The 1976-1987 Pontiac Acadian for example, was actually a retrimmed Chevrolet Chevette.
Even if you’re only casually interested in automotive technology, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of Cadillac’s ill-fated V8-6-4 engine, which became available for the 1981 model year.
Even if you are only a casual follower of the new-vehicle marketplace, you are likely familiar with GMC’s popular Denali trim level. Denalis are the best-equipped, most luxuriously trimmed trucks in any given GMC vehicle model line. Denali has proven to be a profit center for GMC, with the customer take rate on the pricey trim level running as high as 50 percent on the Yukon/Yukon XL large SUVs.
I’ve never heard it suggested that the Cadillac HT4100 V8 engine was flawed because it was rushed into production, but there is evidence to indicate that that was indeed the case.
If you don’t remember the HT4100, you’re not alone. As a result of the powerplant’s flaws (more on those in a moment) Cadillac marketing folks dropped the HT moniker after a few years, leaving subsequent updated versions of the engine unbranded.
Any good headhunter will tell you that it pays to be flexible when looking for a job. Sure, experience is good, but being willing and able to adapt to different projects almost always impresses potential employers.
It’s a popularly held position that General Motors doesn’t take enough styling chances—or at least it historically hasn’t. I would argue that there are plenty of Eighties and Nineties examples of rather sterile looking GM vehicles that support this point, but a slate of inoffensive Cieras, Malibus, and Skyhawks hardly tells the whole story. General Motors has, in fact, taken many styling chances over the years–though the results weren’t always positive.