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Chevy Uplander/Pontiac Montana SV6/Saturn Relay/Buick Terraza



  • tomcat630tomcat630 Member Posts: 854
    "glad to see your mind is open today tomcat"

    Again, a minivan customer doesn't care about torque #'s, just if the van "has good pick up", can hold lots of items, and is conveinient. The Honda and Toyota minivans get all the attention from the media, but are still not #1 sellers.

    BTW, import makers do have incentives, too. Maybe not $4-5000 rebates, but 1.9% is still an incentive.

    Wheil we are at it, to the "purists", believe it or not, lots of people do NOT read Car and Driver/Road and Track/Automobile religiously, expect perfect stat sheets, think every vehicle should have a manual trans, and want to upstage people with car "know it all-ness"
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    200/220 are numbers that you cannot deny are less than the others in this class.

    here is how these vans will be competing

    -looks, inside and out
    -fit and finish

    It will be interesting to see in which of these areas besides (incentiveized) price these vans will hold up.
  • 5speedmanual5speedmanual Member Posts: 4
    Within one year, I will be buying a minivan. I have been holding off as I was waiting to see the new models from Ford, GM and Chrysler. After looking at the Freestar, I was very surprised that Ford did not have a split third row seat (a must for us) and that it was priced so high.

    I have also been waiting to see the new GM minivans and I liked what I saw on the pictures in this message board (I don't think the Siennas or the or Quests are particulary attractive). Having said that, I am very surprised that GM's engine will have only 200 hp and 220 torque, especially given the increased weight. They will probably have to compete on price, as there are not compelling enough reasons for people to buy the GMs (perception of reliability, and low quality interiors), just as in the case with the Freestar. Very disappointing.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    the Siennas were just sitting there. And there were a few buyers there, looking at Highlanders, 4Runners, pretty much everything but Land Cruisers and Siennas. I was at the restaurant across the street, and there was a Salsa red XLE, a Phatom Gray LE, a Desert Mist CE, and two others. I forget which trim and color.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Do you all really think that there is 600+lbs of anything that can be added to these vans? I have great doubts about a 3800lbs van becoming a 4400lbs van with a redesign. Is the Buick family grille that heavy? Hopefully Thursdays broadcast and the press releases to come will give actual info.
  • stormdavystormdavy Member Posts: 80
    The combination of Elantra-like grille and plunging beltline spell "low-end" to me.
  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Member Posts: 1,031
    look at the headrests, looks like the same cheap seats to me! also, the door handles and sliding rear doors seem kinda familiar! GM missed the target again!
  • lennxlennx Member Posts: 73
    The pictures look evolutionary, not revolutionary. If they has done this in 2001, or 2002, that would have worked well. But to wait this long, they really need to do something big. Those pictures were not it.

    If they can keep the final weight in check, the 3.4 will do fine. I have the 3.4 in our 2002 Venture and it has plenty of power.
  • logic1logic1 Member Posts: 2,433
    photos. The pictures appear to be photo-shopped Chevy Ventures with slight modifications to the front.

    Using these unsubstantiated photos as a launching pad for editorial comment may yield to surprise when reality slaps back up.
  • wheelz4wheelz4 Member Posts: 569
    If these pix really are the new? GM sport?vans, then what we've basically got are the old Montana/Venture with new front fenders, grill, headlights/tailights and front&rear bumpers + a slight upgrade in power. In other words, a smoke & mirrors job from GM to get us to think that these are a radically new kind of crossover-van-type vehicle.
    I'll reserve final judgement until I see them in the flesh but they are a major disappointment for now.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Don't forget that the windshield, doors (front & rear), windows (rear doors & quarters), rear quarters are also different. In these pictures, I do not see a single piece that is the same as the current generation vans with the possible exception of the door handles. Damn GM for not redesigning the door handles. :)
  • corsicachevycorsicachevy Member Posts: 316
    "The pictures appear to be photo-shopped Chevy Ventures with slight modifications to the front." - logic.

    What about those pictures leads you to believe that they are photoshop products? Are there certain characteristics in the images that tipped you off?

    Given GM's product development schedule for their minivans it doesn't seem unlikely that they would make cosmetic changes to the current minivan to create the illusion of an "all new" model. This practice isn't completely unheard of in the automotive world.
  • logic1logic1 Member Posts: 2,433
    The first official photos of the Malibu were very well done. These look cheap and low budget.

    Granted the mini-vans are not as important to GM as the Malibu. But one thinks GM would have went out of its way to make those first shots pretty.

    Finally, why would the first shots only be available on Autoworld? GM drops pr pieces to everyone, including Edmunds. But go to Edmunds' Saturn Relay first look, and you have a completely different concept.
  • corsicachevycorsicachevy Member Posts: 316
    One of the reasons these photos look cheap is that they are obviously scanned images. A bad scanner combined with a low quality print can make for a sub par image.

    You mentioned the Saturn minivan that has been on Edmund's future vehicle link for quite some time. That vehicle looks like a "real" minivan - not the bloated family yachts that have become all the rage. Now, that vehicle with the 3.5 liter V6 may make some sense and be a good seller for Saturn, but no one would consider a vehicle of that size as an alternative to Honda, Toyota and DC. The Saturn van appears to be MPV-sized.
  • wheelz4wheelz4 Member Posts: 569
    The doors and rear quarter-panel look identical to the Montana/Venture....they still haven't bothered to hide the sliding door track. I'd be willing to bet the front windshield is the same too. The C pillar/rear quarter window is different but it could be just a piece of trim and a new window. I bet the tailgate is the same too. If the interiors aren't radically different, then just like the Wind/Free/Star, I really can't see what's the point. If they are keeping both long & short wheelbase models, then the short-wheelbase one may give the illusion of being more SUV-like, but that's about it.
    BTW, the Saturn van in Edmunds is an old concept....the Saturn version of GM's CSV's will look nothing like it.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    The Saturn shown in the future vehicle section is a 4 year old concept, that at 177" is 10" shorter then the current Mazda and 28" shorter then the new GM "Minivan". It more accurately predicted Vue and Ion styling features. GM only added Saturn to the van family to increase output at the most efficent minivan plant in North America.

    And look at the sheetmetal again. It is all new. Has to be to build a van that is 3.7" longer, 2.5" wider, and 4" taller then the current van. (Based on the specs posted here last week by Theo2709 vs. current vans).
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,554
    that these pictures are just test mules with new front-ends grafted on? Sometimes auto manufacturers will do that, to see how the new front-end clip affects engine cooling and breathing. Instead of building the whole new vehicle, they'll just stick the proposed front-end on an existing car to see how it acts.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    I hope those turn out to be photochopped. Looks like the old model with a hood from a Honda Pilot, then each division's grille.

  • logic1logic1 Member Posts: 2,433
    I am no engineer, but the shape in the photo looks as though it may be rather difficult to manufacture. If anything, one would expect GM to go with an easier to assemble piece.
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    well, lets wait and see if those are indeed fakes or the real thing. if they are the real thing though its kind of a butchering job. Almost makes an Aztek attractive.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    I do think that these are photoshops, as everything looks exactly the same, and GM promised something new and radical. They promised Camry and Accord levels with the Malibu, and they delivered. So all is not dead yet for the Crossover Sport Vans we're waiting for here.
  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Member Posts: 1,031
    1. the doors are from the current GM triplets
    2. the interior is from the current GM triplets (look at the headrests)
    3. Buick would never use that grill. why? they are going "retro" as in their latest SUVs, the Rendezvous and Rainier. Buick is also making the new Regal and LeSabre with circular grills, not a big eggcrate one..
    4. Buick would also never use those wheels, which for some reason look like hubcaps to me.
    5. Saturn PROMISED, as with GM, that their new minivan would combine SUV-likeness, driveability of a car, and cargo. I see all those except for the SUV part. wheres the crossover traits!?!

    **these photos were obviously photoshopped**
  • just4fun2just4fun2 Member Posts: 461
    I believe that on the Buick, it looks like it has the "old" On-Star antenna. That looks like my 02 antenna and I think they are different for 03. I too believe that these photos aren't the complete new vehicles that will be released.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    if you look at the steering wheel closely, it looks like the steering wheels came straight off a Venture. That probably would not happen as even currently Pontiac and Oldsmobile have different steering wheels than the Venture. Another reason for photo shop.
  • dindakdindak Member Posts: 6,632
    Photoshop IMO. These vans look too much like each other to be real.
  • donleungdonleung Member Posts: 22
    The pictures shown earlier are not Photoshop markups but a scan of the actual pictures from the latest AutoWorld Weekly magazine.
  • tbcreativetbcreative Member Posts: 357
    Isn't Lutz supposed to be at the helm?!

    Just do what we did and buy an MPV. We love it! It's the best minivan on the market, hands down!!!
  • logic1logic1 Member Posts: 2,433
    One possibility is that these are downloads from the video which will play tomorrow. Often a still from a video appears distorted.

    It would make one wonder why autoworld and no one else has the shots, however.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    These are not photoshop pictures. If you want to see GM quality photoshop pictures, look at all the poor pictures in their catalogs.
       Neither door is the same as the current van. Front doors are narrower in front of the mirror mount because the fender set up and the steaper angle of the windshield. The rear door is different because the window is now framed in metal and not overlapping at the rear. This may because it is fixed (like Chrysler) or it may go down.
       And perhaps I haven't been paying enough attention, but all I thought GM has promised was a different marketing classification name, "Sport Van".
         And I believe AutoWorld has the earliest in home date for their issues. And wouldn't be surprised if GM is ticked. The big 3 magazines (CD, MT, & Auto) should be in peoples boxes this week.
  • dindakdindak Member Posts: 6,632
    I think the pictures look ok but they just don't seem that different from what GM offers now. We shall see I guess. So long as they have good interiors and an improved drive train they should sell fine.

    I still think they are photo shopped but if they are in Auto world maybe not.
  • tsxtsx Member Posts: 32
    I'm hoping these are not the actual production models, because that would be the biggest mistake for GM.
    Being here working for the company, they really need something new and different like the new sienna. You can't change a Minivan, so why make it look like an SUV - that's why they have a Crossover SUV segment, like the Murano or the Randezvous.

    A minivan is minivan no matter which way you look at it. Instead of coming with something new (CSVs) they should just try to make the current models better. Have every feature included that's offered by the top players.

    A Nice Powerful engine - Maybe one from the SRX the 3.6L V6 with at least 240HP Or just to become the segment leader - include the 4.2 I6 From the Envoy and show Ford Freestar what Torque and Horsepower combined feels like. All the safety features. All the amenities, Powerful Sound, DVD Entertainment, Flat Floor Flow Down seat with 60/40, High Quality Interior fit and finish with NO GAPS. If they can have some thing similar to this. They have a winner and maybe the new segment leader.

    But knowing GM with their new Malibu, They will probably just try to play catch-up and again watch the Undisputed Honda Odyssey become the segment leader in 2005.
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Member Posts: 854
    The "undisputed" Honda Odyssey saw it's sales drop 22.5% this past Nov. I'd say it's finally cooled off and people realize paying over sticker is foolish, and shopping around.
  • alpha01alpha01 Member Posts: 4,747
    is just feeling the burn of the red-hot Sienna (less than 10 days in inventory!) and the redesigned and signficantly improved Quest. I havent heard of people paying above sticker for a while, but I believe up until recently, they were still going for MSRP or near.

    tsx- how are you so sure the Odyssey will become the undisputed champ upon its redesign? Honda didnt do so hot when it revamped the Civic... so you never know...

  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    well, looking at the pics in MT of the 'new' Audi A6 (new ugly front end grafted on to an existing body) I guess GM isn't the only ones doing this.

    Difference being, the A6 was stellar to begin with.
  • tsxtsx Member Posts: 32
    Let's not talk about the 2004 model year but take it since 99 up until 2003. You can tell by the reviews by edmunds, C&D, MT, Autoweek etc.. on why Odyssey was selling for MSRP... cuz the van was in a Hot Market and there were non available. Most of it changed in 2004 cuz of the competitive new models. and yeah I know the sienna has competition by the throat!!

    But this is a GM discussion... I work for the company.. and so we have the Most Fuel efficient minivan in the market even beating out the new sienna. Most of the features are offered in the current vans including AWD. Now all GM needs is a German Styling and Japanese Quality and realibility in the new van. BINGO!

    My suggestion is again use the new 3.6 with VVT and the most horsepower at 245. I know ppl don't look for power but this way it will put us top of everyone else atleast in one feature! At the sametime make sure to MATCH-UP to sienna with feature by feature. With the big Incentives and a low MSRP for the base model and you have a winner.
  • dindakdindak Member Posts: 6,632
    Odyssey is getting killed by high prices and a better Sienna. New Windstar is suppose to be good also as is the MPV.

    If these are indeed the new vans, I'm a bit disappointed but that said, the new Sienna is pretty ugly also. Best looking vans are still the Chrysler ones IMO. Hopefully GM will put the 3800 or new 3900 in this van (at least as an option) to get the HP up the competition. OHC motor isn't going to happen.

    I am a bit surprised to see how similar these Saturn and Buick models look to each other.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    I agree the new A6 is a step backward.

    These models need more differentiation. Let the Buick be more like the Rendezvous. Give the Saturn plastic side panels after all.

    Those pics looks like face-lifted twins of the very old current design.

  • tomcat630tomcat630 Member Posts: 854
    "Odyssey is getting killed by high prices and a better Sienna.." woo hoo! Honda isn't "undisputed" anymore.

    The Freestar outsold left over Windstars in November, too. It's doing well considering some counted Ford out a few months ago.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    these are photo-shops. Why does AutoWorld or whoever has these already and nobody else has even mentioned the Relay and Terraza? And they look too much alike to be distinguished.
  • alpha01alpha01 Member Posts: 4,747
    Yes, but the Freestar came out of the gate with incentives, which makes its higher sales than Windstar less impressive. I mean, nobody doubted it would be improved vs. the Windstar, but many still doubt it represents ANY kind of advantage compared to its competitors.

  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Member Posts: 1,031
    my opinion: you can't say that these pictures are REAL unless they have been shown in C/D, Motor Trend, R/T, or Automobile Magazine...Autoworld?? no thanx..
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    AutoWorld has been accurate with the new Accord. So who knows?
  • dindakdindak Member Posts: 6,632
    The Freestar is made right here in Oakville and the plant is already shutting down for 4 weeks because of the glut of Freestars. It's a nice van, not sure why it's not selling.
  • alpha01alpha01 Member Posts: 4,747
    "It's a nice van, not sure why it's not selling."
    One of the beefs I have with the Freestar/Monterey, where Ford allegedly spent copious amts. of cash... Materials quality and appearence may be top notch, and thats a step in the right direction- but the dashboard/instrument panel look like something directly out of the early 90s. Not impressive. Not competitive.
    And then, theres all this talk of how people buy hp and drive torque, which I do honestly believe. However, the Freestar engines are so low output for their size... the torque simply cant mask this... Car and Driver timed a Sienna 8passenger to 60 in 7.8 seconds, the Ody even faster. The only stat I've seen so far, on PBS's Motorweek, puts the 4.2L Monterey at 9.4 to 60, clearly slower. Once again, good for the early to mid 90s minivan entries, though. Also- fuel economy is not too impressive, understandably so with engines of that size. GM may suffer the same lethargic fate, though all indications point to excellent fuel economy from the 3.5L pushrod engine. And at least the HF 3.6L engine will be an option in some models....

    Simply put, "Nice" doesnt cut it anymore. The Sienna is a whole lot more than "nice", and the Quest caters to the non-conventional minivan buyer. Seems to me like the next Ody, the Sienna, and the Quest will continue to duke it out for the top spots while the Freestar, the current DCX minis, and perhaps... depending on how much of the information here is true... the GM quadruplets and the Kia Sedona...will duke it out for the best of the lower-tier minis.

  • logic1logic1 Member Posts: 2,433
    I think DCX will stay well on top as it is now.

    So are you suggesting perhaps Ford should have taken a cue from the ION and made a center dash IP?
  • tbcreativetbcreative Member Posts: 357
    I still maintain that the MPV is the best minivan on the market. Best looking, best package, great engine, great quality, great warranty, the first to offer passenger windows that roll down, and best bang for the buck. It's sporty, beefy looks constantly have people asking whether or not it's a minivan, or SUV crossover.

    I was worried when I heard GM was changing the design and image of their minivans to more of an SUV look, thinking that maybe we should have waited before getting our MPV last Spring. After seeing these pics, if they are the real deal, I'm glad we didn't wait!
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    Freestar is not nice. Its interior reeks of cheap and slapped together. Nice simple dash design, but the thing looks like a warmed over conversion van inside. Sloppy fit everywhere. Kinda resembles cheap furniture.

    Windstar's interior may have been better executed.
  • a_l_hubcapsa_l_hubcaps Member Posts: 518
    I have not been inside a Freestar, but surely the interior quality is better than the Windstar. I have been inside a new 2003 Windstar LX and I was shocked at how cheap it was. Out 1995 GL has much better materials (carpet, seats, etc.) Also, I actually like the look of the Freestar dashboard. I'm glad to see them do away with the "space pod" designs of the '90s and get back to something less obfuscated.

    -Andrew L
  • dindakdindak Member Posts: 6,632
    Ya, you might be right. I took another look at the interior and while the materials look better the general design looks a bit 90's. I guess Ford will be discounting.

    At least GM's OHV motors are efficient.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    If you don't all believe the pictures could show up in Autworld first (becasue of its early in home delivery date vs the other mags), how about the front page of the Detroit Free Press. Also has an article with some feature details, such as 4 wheel discs on the vans.

    Also the Buick web site is up with the Terraza. Turns out I was wrong, GM did redesign the door handles. They look/are chrome at the Buick site.
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