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March 3, 2003

USA: GM cuts back on Saturn production

General Motors has said it will cut back production of its slow-selling Saturn cars by stopping production at the two plants where the cars are assembled for two weeks in March.

By bcusack

General Motors has said it will cut back production of its slow-selling Saturn cars by stopping production on the two lines where the cars are assembled for two weeks in March.

Sales of the Saturn L Series fell 17 percent last year to 81,172 units in the United States, far below the 200,000 capacity at the Wilmington, Delaware, plant.

Saturn expects stronger results for its new small car, the Ion, which replaced the aging S Series in Saturn’s line-up in November of last year. But even with a new incentives package, sales of the Ion lag behind those of the S Series it replaced. The car has had mixed reviews in the motoring press.

The shutdown will also allow the Spring Hill, Tenn. assembly line where the Ion is built to prepare for production in March of the Ion ‘quad coupe’.

Production of the Saturn Vue SUV which is made on a separate assembly line in Spring Hill will not be affected.

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