Last post on Jan 18, 2013 at 6:07 PM
You are in the Oldsmobile Intrigue
What is this discussion about?
Oldsmobile Intrigue, Sedan
#3446 of 12345 One2One
Jul 10, 2001 (8:28 am)
I agree for the most part with your post. The problem is this.... When the Intrigue was launched in late '97, it was marketed as the car that would not only turn around Oldsmobile but also the car that would probably follow the steps of the Aurora to shakeup the stodgy product image of GM at the time.
The Intrigue did awaken interest among the Import only buyers camp and some of you are clear proof of that. The issue was that this car did exhibited a lot of quality control problems in its early years. For the Intrigue to have successfully carved a niche of its own, GM should have followed up the car's introductory years with impeccable quality control and reliability. Had that been the case, the car today would have enjoyed a much better standing in the market place, better reputation, better resale value and quite possible no one would be talking about the dismissal of Olds from the marketplace. 1997 and 1998 were crucial years in the overall public acceptance of the Intrigue and this is the area of execution were GM dropped the ball all the way.
Sure, if buying a new 2001 or 2002 Intrigue is a heck of a deal...heavely discounted units and incredible finance bargains, a 5/60 standard limited warranty (Should have been there in the first place) and a promise of better reliability due to the fact that these cars are into their fourth and fifth production years....that's all fine and dandy but the Intrigue's time to make a lasting positive impression already passed 3 to 4 years ago.
Indeed Oldsmobile dealership service (or lack of thereof) also contributed to the brand failure due to bad reputation when problems became apparent in their vehicles.
#3447 of 12345 Quality reputation
Jul 10, 2001 (9:07 am)
Some people are convinced Intrigue has a bad quality reputation amongst the general public, and that has kept sales low. I have seen no evidence of it having a reputation of any kind, bad or good. Most people I know have NO knowlege of it.
And as to a bad quality reputation keeping sales low, as I already pointed out, if that made a significant difference then the Taurus, a poster child for rust, shody assembly, and hugely expensive drive train repairs, would have been canned years ago.
#3448 of 12345 The Taurus
Jul 10, 2001 (9:16 am)
Sells because it is cheap when new, dirt cheap used (Worst resale value among American midsizers) and Ford has done a masterful job in keeping the Taurus appealing in despite of the mediocre engines/platform and tainted reliability history.
Ford sells lots of them to the fleet/rental car market. The Taurus also appeals to the would be Accord/Camry buyers just because offers bigger quarters and standard V6 on a mainstream and non-offensive looking package.
Ford success with the Taurus has been attributed to heavy marketing and sales incentives. Most people know that Taurus are also for the most part unreliable and have lots of engine, transmission, electrical and brake related quirks.
The Taurus SHO V8 was the best and only reason to look and consider buying a Taurus...but the moron known as Jac 'The Knife' Nasser discountinued it after 1999...
#3449 of 12345 lee18 is rite!
Jul 10, 2001 (9:29 am)
Like I said before, people know nothing about Intrigue including the problems it may have initially had. No one has ever said, "hey.. did you have any intermediate steering shaft problems with that car". It's usually more like.. "hey... nice car. Who makes it?".
Simple as that.
#3450 of 12345 Consumer Reports lets them know about the issues
Jul 10, 2001 (9:56 am)
Looking over the last edition of Consumer Reports, the 1998 Oldsmobile Intrigue is listed under 'Used cars to avoid'...need I say more..?
Jul 10, 2001 (10:05 am)
"Consumer Reports" said it.. need I say more.
Keep in mind they recommend the 2001 Intrigue also.
#3452 of 12345 I do not take them as gospel either
Jul 10, 2001 (10:08 am)
But unfortunately a lot of people take them seriously...
#3453 of 12345 Product Strategy
Jul 10, 2001 (11:06 am)
Dindak, Teo, I think you miss my point. The Bengal is a very attractive vehicle, yes; but, like the Plymouth Prowler, it is totally wrong for Buick's image. Note that the Prowler did nothing to save Plymouth. Now we have a vehicle that is the antithesis of everything people associate with Buick. Let's see, where did this happen before....?
Ah, yes, Oldsmobile. Introduced a whole bunch of pretty good vehicles that were totally unlike their past image. A few people who never would have previously considered an Oldsmobile actually bought them, and liked them. But unfortunately, they turned off a whole bunch of their former customers who, like it or not, were still walking around with money in their pockets looking for a traditional Oldsmobile they could buy. A bunch of those customers walked away from Oldsmobile forever and went to Buick to join the traditional Buick buyers that liked the kind of car Buick makes. As a result, Olds died. Now, Teo, you want Buick to do the same thing that killed Olds? Are you bucking for a Vice-Presidency at GM or something? This sounds like Zarella-thinking...
#3454 of 12345 Zarella
Jul 10, 2001 (11:42 am)
He used to be a vice-president over at Bausch-Lomb the same people that makes your trusty RayBan sunglasses and contact lenses drops. That dude is by no means a 'Car Person'. For the most part he is clueless, yet he is the president of GM's North American operations. Thank him personally (Or send him a little thank you note) for the dismissal and failure of the Oldsmobile division.
If I were in that position I would change many things around...but...given GM's archaic corporate culture I dunno.
The Bengal might be the wrong product for Buick but like you said it is designed to increase show room traffic pretty much like the Prowler did for Plymouth, the Viper did for Dodge and the NSX did for Acura.
Look at Lexus. Lexus does not enjoy a high performance image. It is consider to be the stodgiest of high end Japanese luxury cars. They brought over the RWD Toyota Altezza (Lexus IS300) sedan and the car has been criticized because it is too small, too expensive and too radical for the typical Lexus buyer. The car hasn't sold well (I personally like it minus the clear taillight lenses) due to the lack of a manual tranny and a more power 6 cyl engine. In the fall, Lexus will introduce a 5-speed manual and the IS300 Sportswagon in hopes to jump start interest for this vehicle.
Perhaps, the IS300 would have had more acceptance as a high end Toyota model, not a Lexus blvd cruiser. Lexus also introduced the akward looking, French designed Lexus SC430 coupe which is another non traditional product for the Lexus clientele. The Audi TT is better.
The Bengal is to fill a similar niche and it is mainly another Image builder product. This car is not aimed at the Regal/LeSabre buyer but it is preparing the way for the Buick Cielo and other Buick products. I think GM will get it right and better with Buick.
If Oldsmobile would have gotten the Bengal I think things would have gone a bit better.
The Prowler was marketed as a Plymouth, already a dying brand long before this hot rodder was introduced in the mid 1990's.
Jul 10, 2001 (11:51 am)
I say bring back Deloren at least he new cars!