Cadillac brand canned
GM Holden has axed plans to introduce the luxury Cadillac brand just weeks away from the cars arriving in dealers. The brand is on hold “indefinitely”. The decision has now cast a shadow over two other marginal GM products, Saab and Hummer. However, GM Holden remains committed to the slow-selling pair despite being put under a “strategic review” by the parent General Motors.
Cadillac was to be the third make, along with Saab and Hummer, in the GM Premium Brands porfolio. GM Holden boss Mark Reuss has blamed the global and local car industry downturn for the Cadillac decision.
“It’s a tough call but we only really had one chance to launch the brand here in Australia,” he said.
“But in these challenging times we figured we couldn’t give it the chance it deserves as our flagship brand.”’
GM Holden had already certified 89 CTS sedans (pictured below) for sale but these cars will now be on-sold into other right-hand drive markets.
TOYOTA TOPPLES GM
TOYOTA is the world’s new number one.
It officially became the global best seller as General Motors’ 2008 figures showed it hit the skids following the American financial collapse.
The result ends 71 years at the top for GM, which had been number one since it overtook Ford during the depths of the Great Depression.
The official GM sales total last year was 8.356 million vehicles, well behind the Toyota tally of 8.972.
The result was announced in Detroit as GM battles for survival and more US government funding off the back of the worst sales downturn in recent memory.
GM’s sales figure was down 10.8 per cent from its 2007 result of 9.37 million and at home in the US its result was down 21.1 per cent to 3.56 million.
But Toyota has not been immune to the global financial crisis and has recorded its first reversal in 10 years as it also heads towards the first trading loss, although it will still post an overall profit, in company history.
CAR CLUB INVITATION
MEMBERS of the region’s car clubs are being invited to meet at Ellis Beach on Wednesday at 6pm.
The co-ordinator of the MG Car Club of Queensland FNQ Chapter, Justin Nicholls, said on the first Wednesday of each month the American Car Club of Cairns was inviting members of all car clubs to gather at the Ellis Beach car park at 6pm.
“This meeting is an initiative of the American Car Club of Cairns which wants to promote better communication between the car clubs of Cairns,’’ he said in a newsletter to members.
“In addition to this I expect that there will be many other events that are on an invitational basis. Likewise, it is most likely that other car enthusiasts may join us on a run or two. Please show your support where you can.’’
The MG club’s first meet is on February 21 to Etty Bay. Members are meeting under the big marlin at the Stockland Cairns shopping centre at Earlville on Saturday, February 21 at 9am for a 9.25am departure to Innisfail and Etty Bay for lunch.
The club plans mid-week runs too with the first on Wednesday, March 11 outside the Cairns Showgrounds on Mulgrave Rd at 9.30am. Contact Bob Ingram, 4038 1549 for more information.
Mr Nicholls can be contacted on 4057 8273 or 0401 901 058.
WORLD’S GREATEST RACING CAR
TRAFFIC in London’s Pall Mall came to a halt recently when the legendary Maserati 250F Formula One car driven by rock legend Nick Mason from Pink Floyd called into the Royal Automobile Club to be awarded the title of The World’s Greatest Racing Car.
The oldest car club in the world welcomed the car after thousands of readers from Octane, one of Britain’s top motoring magazines, had voted for the car which had been nominated by Sir Stirling Moss.
“This accolade is more than well deserved,” said Nick Mason (pictured above in the car).
“The Maserati 250F is the archetypal Grand Prix car and, apart from being one of the most beautiful, it is one of the most progressive and forgiving of racing cars to drive. Who can forget what must be the most iconic of motor racing images of Fangio in a full power-slide at the French Grand Prix in 1957, with battle scars evident on the nose? The car that is, not the driver.
“It was a great idea from Octane to get readers to vote for their favourite racing car and I am delighted that the 250F beat its rivals,” said Mr Mason, who is one of the UK’s leading classic and sports car collectors.
The magazine received thousands of votes for the car from readers who had seen a series of articles putting a total of nine famous cars up for the accolade including an Auto Union Type C, Lotus 49, Porsche 917, Cobra, Mercedes-Benz W196 and Toyota TS010 Group C, but it was the 1950s F1 car that won.
The 250F competed between 1954 and 1958.