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GM Offers Money Back Guarantee

10th September 2009

With mounting pressure from the board of directors to improve sales AND profitability, GM announced today that it will offer customers a “60-Day Satisfaction Guarantee” which allows customers to return their vehicle to their dealer between 31 and 60 days of purchase and receive a refund of the purchase price for the vehicle.  The program runs from September 14 to November 30, and covers all vehicles from Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC only.  It doesn’t cover the brands non grata (Saturn, Hummer, Saab and Pontiac). Details of GM’s Satisfaction Guarantee:

· Offer covers 2009 and 2010 Model Year Chevys, Buicks, GMCs and Cadillacs (except medium duty trucks)

· Customers (one per household) can return their vehicle between 31 and 60 days with less than 4,000 miles

· Customers will be informed in writing before they buy the vehicle of the terms of the Satisfaction Guarantee

· Customers must take delivery by Nov. 30

· The Satisfaction Guarantee covers the vehicle purchase price and sales tax, but not other add-ons like accessories, negative equity on a trade-in or other fees;  other restrictions apply

· Leased vehicles are not included

The money-back guarantee is also part of a new marketing campaign which will star GM Chairman Edward Whitacre Jr.  The campaign will evoke the famous Lee Iacocca adds of the 1980s, when Lido told us “if you can find a better car, buy it!”  Eddie Whitacre will tell us “May the Best Car Win.”  Using Lee was smart back then; I’m not sure using Whitacre is.  Lee was a celebrity of sorts already, famously going to DC to ask for federal loan guarantees. Nobody outside the telephone industry ever heard of Whitacre before he was named chairman of GM.  He might do very well, but nobody will know who he is – at least at first.  This will reduce the effectiveness.  It also goes against new marketing honcho Bob Lutz’s plan to focus on the 4 core brands and not on the company in its advertising.

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