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GM Plans to Use Chevy TrailBlazer As Model for Buick Overhaul Plan

May 24, 2002

General Motors Corp.'s Buick division will sell a version of the company's successful Chevrolet TrailBlazer sport-utility vehicle under thename Buick Rainier beginning in the fall of 2003, as part of a broader overhaul of the 99-year-old brand's model lineup, according to a Wall Street Journal story by Joseph B. White.Buick also plans to overhaul its advertising this fall, but will continue to use golf star Tiger Woods in its campaign, Buick division general manager Roger Adams said at a lunch sponsored by the Automotive Press Association in Detroit.The Rainier would be the first traditional truck-based SUV offered under the Buick nameand would be priced above the division's current SUV, the Rendezvous, which is derived from GM's front-drive minivan architecture.Buick chief Roger Adams dispelled speculation that the Rainier is simply a Bravada with a Buick badge on it. "It's going to have a very distinctive look to it," Adams said.The Rainier features a front end and grille similar to Buick's other SUV, the Rendezvous. And unlike the V-6 powered Bravada, GM willgive the Rainier a higher-performance V-8 engine.Still, analysts say the timing of the Rainier -- the vehicle's first model year is 2004, which is Bravada's last -- is more than just coincidence, according to the Detroit News.
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