On the heels of Ford’s move to spread the Mustang brand out to include electric SUVs, there’s starting to be louder drum beats to do the same with the Corvette brand. The reasoning goes that the Corvette brand resonates so well because it hasn’t been tainted by past corporate gaffes. You know, the way all of the other brands have under the GM umbrella.
So the thinking is that this last virgin brand within GM should be diluted and bastardized like the rest of the GM brands have. Most of GM’s reputation went past the point of no return from the 1970s to the end of the 1980s. Twenty years.
Will GM make a Corvette SUV because it can?
GM got another shot at life after the government bailout in 2010. But, it had to shed a lot of brands that once had meaning but instead became meaningless and redundant. Now, some are calling for GM to do the same thing to Corvette by doing what Ford did with the Mustang; make an SUV and slap the Corvette name on it.
GM is a big corporation that gets desperate to show quarterly profits. Sometimes it makes some really bad decisions that have nothing to do with nurturing and protecting brands. Corvette has been pretty much left alone because it was inconsequential to GM’s bottom line. Now that it can’t get traction fast enough with Cadillac, Buick and Chevrolet, it’s looking around.
Is GM looking to bring back Hummer because Chevy trucks are slipping?
There is talk GM will bring back Hummer as an electric truck brand. Chevy trucks are only now starting to settle into third place in truck sales. Ram overtook Chevy trucks this year to snag second place. So, it would seem that the new good idea is to add another brand or two. You know, as it did with Saturn in the 1980s.
In theory, you can look at what Porsche has done as a roadmap for what you could do with Corvette. Porsche only had one product for years; the 911. Slowly, it built out its portfolio to include a lower-priced 911 called Boxster. Then, it slowly spread out into the SUV segment, then years later a four-door sedan.
But Chevy already has a lower-priced Corvette with the Camaro. The word is it won’t see another generation after the current one is given up. And Chevy also has lots of SUVs. And it has had a variety of sedans over the decades. The last ones will be killed off in 2020.
Anything with “Corvette” slapped onto it GM already makes
GM also has a high-end four-door like the Panamera in Cadillac. Cadillac has SUVs and all forms of four-door sedans. So, what is the magic all of these models that already exist within GM are going to get with Corvette slapped onto them? Anything GM makes with Corvette on its flanks it already makes. Why yank the Corvette brand down into the GM morass of mediocrity.
Certain Wall Street analysts point to every company from Aston Martin to Jaguar and Lamborghini diving into the SUV soup. That’s their justification for a Corvette SUV. They ignore the fact that Corvette has an unsullied rep because it has Chevy to do that profit-making dirty work for it.
Those other companies have always had to make it on their own. The unique position that puts Corvette under Chevrolet is what makes it special. It’s just different than those other companies Wall Street likes to prop up their money-making schemes by mentioning. We promise, if GM starts to add product lines to Corvette like it’s other divisions already have, it will become like the other divisions. Why is that smart?
In spite of its vast resources GM is still making bad decisions
Look, nobody has a crystal ball. GM sure has the resources to study to death the idea of a Corvette line of vehicles. But, it has proven over time that how it decides things can many times be the wrong decision. In spite of all of those resources.
If the one honest brand GM has left becomes just like all of its other brands, why won’t the same thing become of it? Be that the case, why subject it to the doom of GM corporate malfeasance? Let it run with its newfound mid-engine glory and maintain the sweet spot it currently presides. Leave it up to the brainiacs within GM to figure out how to turn around Cadillac, Buick, and Chevy truck.
All one has to do is look at the decisions made for the Cadillac division. Go back six months, or 60 years-any timelines you choose. Then look at what GM has done in that timeframe, and see if you want those types of decisions made for Corvette.
Corvette has withstood those bad GM corporate decisions. Like a lone 180 hp engine in 1980, T-tops, and generally poor quality off and on over many periods of Corvette’s existence. It’s something magical that hasn’t befallen Corvette as it has with every other brand.
A Corvette SUV? Leave it be, please.