Archive for the ‘Press Release’ Category

Jim Wangers, the Godfather of the GTO announces the sale of his Pontiac Collection

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Wangers cars for sale

Oceanside, CA – Jim Wangers, the man most closely associated with the advertising and promotion of Pontiac during its glory days of the 60s and 70s and the man affectionately termed the “Godfather of the GTO” has decided to “thin the herd”. Wangers is offering his prized collection of Pontiac’s—Goats and Firebirds—for sale. Included is Wangers’ collection of Trans Ams—a complete set of Anniversary Edition cars—a ’69, a ’79, an ’89 and a ’99 Convertible.

Jim Wangers is not only Pontiac’s legendary “ad man”, he has always been an avid enthusiast, driving and racing since the late 50s with a win at the 1960 NHRA Nationals in a Pontiac to his credit. Nearing 84, Wangers recently stated, “I am not really able to enjoy these cars like I used to do. I respect these cars too much, so I’ve decided it is time for other more capable enthusiasts to get behind the wheel and feel the performance of my favorite Pontiacs.”

The Wangers Collection includes a ’65 Royal Bobcat GTO, his all-time favorite ’69 GTO Judge as well as a mix of Firebirds to mention a few. These Pontiacs all have significant meaning to Wangers given his involvement in the creation, marketing and promotion of so many notable Pontiacs.

Each car comes with its complete PHS (Pontiac Historic Services documentation) and can be personally autographed by Jim Wangers for the new owner.

These wonderful Pontiacs are “drivers” not “trailer queens”. They do what they were built to do—run and show people their taillights.

Now is every enthusiasts dream come true—a chance to own a Pontiac of memorable significance. Details on The Jim Wangers Collection can be viewed on Wangers’ website, www.geetotiger.com—they are GR-RRReat cars worthy of a closer look!

Here are the cars listed:

* 1965 GTO Sport Coupe, Jim Wangers’ personal ROYAL BOBCAT Tribute
* 1966 GTO Convertible, was featured on TV in A&E’s “America’s Top Musclecars” where the GTO was named #1
* 1967 Firebird 400, Pontiac Enthusiast Magazine “Greenbird” project car – original 400/400 “Fabulous Firebird”.
* 1969 GTO Judge, Jim Wangers Absolute Favorite GTO in Carousel Red
* 1969 GTO Judge, Original Drag Race “Dealer Program” Car in Carousel Red
* 1969 Firebird Trans Am, the “REAL” deal — A numbers matching Ram Air III Trans Am
* 1979 Firebird Trans Am, a 10th Anniversary Trans Am with less than 100 miles on the odometer
* 1989 Firebird Trans Am, a 20th Anniversary Trans Am, Documented Indy 500 Parade Car
* 1999 Firebird Trans Am Convertible, the 30th Anniversary Trans Am featured in Motor Trend and Car and Driver magazines.
* 2000 Holden Commodore HSV GTS-R, the “very” car that inspired Bob Lutz to seek from Holden (GM’s Australian car maker) a car for U.S. buyers—the ’04 Pontiac GTO.

Muscle Car Parts Mainstay The Paddock Facing Auction Block

Friday, May 28th, 2010

Warehouse and Showroom Items to be Auctioned at Company’s Knightstown, IN facility on July 29. Sealed Bids Being Accepted for Company’s Intellectual Property.

Avon, IN (PRWEB) May 22, 2010 — The down economy has claimed another victim—The Paddock, a mainstay in the muscle car parts business for over 40 years. Indianapolis-based Key Auctioneers (www.KeyAuctioneers.com) announced today that it will auction the company’s parts inventory, showroom items, collectibles, vehicles, and equipment at the company’s 60,000-square-foot Knightstown facility.

The Paddocks Knightstown headquarters.
The Paddocks Knightstown headquarters.

The July 29 auction is expected to draw thousands of muscle car enthusiasts from the Midwest and beyond.

The Paddock has been a leading supplier of muscle car parts for several decades. Its thirteen parts lines represent some of America’s most popular muscle cars, including Mustang, Corvette, GTO, and Camaro.

Company founder Jim O’Neil started The Paddock in 1965, restoring muscle cars in a small shop in Knightstown. By 1979, the company was manufacturing Mustang steel patch panels. The company’s first Mustang catalog was printed soon thereafter and the company started to grow by word of mouth. In 1980, the first Camaro catalog was printed. In 1998, Wes Watts, a former parts manager for the local Chevrolet dealership, purchased the company from O’Neil.

Over the years the company added Firebird, GTO, Chevelle, Nova, Cutlass, Impala and other catalogs to its muscle car line. In 2001, Watts built a state-of-the art 60,000-square-foot facility to accommodate his growing business.

According the Watts, the economic downturn of the last three years, along with the credit crisis, contributed to the company’s demise.

Key Auctioneers Senior Vice President Tim Boeglin said the company’s intellectual property was garnering a high degree of interest. Included in the intellectual property are the company’s name and trademarks, million-name customer list, websites, catalogs, and phone numbers.

About Key Auctioneers

Key Auctioneers is an Indianapolis-based auctioneer of commercial, industrial, and real estate assets in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, and Missouri. The company’s automotives division has auctioned several Indy racing teams, including MoNunn Racing, Panther Racing, and Guthrie Meyer Racing.

For more information about Key Auctioneers, contact Tim Boeglin or (812) 327-5352.

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Pontiac brand to be gone by 2011: GMs press release

Monday, April 27th, 2009

GM logo2009-04-27

Updated Viability Plan Speeds, Deepens Restructuring of U.S. Operations

GM Accelerates its Reinvention as a Leaner, More Viable Company


DETROIT — General Motors (NYSE: GM) today presented an updated Viability Plan that will speed the reinvention of GM’s U.S. operations into a leaner, more customer-focused, and more cost-competitive automaker.

The Viability Plan is included in an exchange offer whereby GM is offering certain bondholders shares of GM common stock and accrued interest in exchange for certain outstanding notes.

Revised Viability Plan goes further and faster

The Viability Plan announced today builds on the February 17 Viability Plan submitted to the U.S. Treasury. The revised Plan accelerates the timeline for a number of important actions and makes deeper cuts in several key areas of GM’s operations, with the objective to make us a leaner, faster, and more customer-focused organization going forward.

Significant changes include:

* A focus on four core brands in the U.S. – Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC – with fewer nameplates and a more competitive level of marketing support per brand.
* A more aggressive restructuring of GM’s U.S. dealer organization to better focus dealer resources for improved sales and customer service.
* Improved U.S. capacity utilization through accelerated idling and closures of powertrain, stamping, and assembly plants.
* Lower structural costs, which GM North America (GMNA) projects will enable it to breakeven (on an adjusted EBIT basis) at a U.S. total industry volume of approximately 10 million vehicles, based on the pricing and share assumptions in the plan. This rate is substantially below the 15 to 17 million annual vehicle sales rates recorded from 1995 through 2007.

“We are taking tough but necessary actions that are critical to GM’s long-term viability,” said Fritz Henderson, GM president and CEO. “Our responsibility is clear – to secure GM’s future – and we intend to succeed. At the same time, we also understand the impact these actions will have on our employees, dealers, unions, suppliers, shareholders, bondholders, and communities, and we will do whatever we can to mitigate the effects on the extended GM team.”

Fewer U.S. brands, nameplates, and dealers

As part of the revised Viability Plan and the need to move faster and further, GM in the U.S. will focus its resources on four core brands, Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC. The Pontiac brand will be phased out by the end of 2010. GM will offer a total of 34 nameplates in 2010, a reduction of 29 percent from 48 nameplates in 2008, reflecting both the reduction in brands and continued emphasis on fewer and stronger entries. This four-brand strategy will enable GM to better focus its new product development programs and provide more competitive levels of market support.

The revised plan moves up the resolution of Saab, Saturn, and Hummer to the end of 2009, at the latest. Updates on these brands will be provided as these initiatives progress.

Working with its dealers, GM anticipates reducing its U.S. dealer count from 6,246 in 2008 to 3,605 by the end of 2010, a reduction of 42 percent. This is a further reduction of 500 dealers, and four years sooner, than in the February 17 Plan. The goal is to accomplish this reduction in an orderly, cost-effective, and customer-focused way. This reduction in U.S. dealers will allow for a more competitive dealer network and higher sales effectiveness in all markets. More details on these initiatives will be provided in May.

Sales volume and market share projections

The Viability Plan anticipates improved financial results despite more conservative U.S. sales volume expectations going forward. The lower volume expectations are the result of managing the business with fewer nameplates and dealers, leaner inventories, and reduced market share. To address the inventory issue, GM on April 23 announced U.S. production schedule reductions of approximately 190,000 vehicles during the second and early third quarters of 2009.

The Viability Plan also reduces GM’s market share projections to adjust for the impact of the brand and dealer consolidation, as well as for the short-term impact of speculation regarding a GM bankruptcy. The plan assumes a 19.5 percent share in 2009, with share stabilizing in the 18.4 to 18.9 percent range in subsequent years.

“We have strong new product coming for our four core brands: the Chevrolet Camaro, Equinox, Cruze and Volt; Buick LaCrosse; GMC Terrain; and Cadillac SRX and CTS Sport Wagon and Coupe,” said Henderson. “A tighter focus by GM and its dealers will help give these products the capital investment, marketing and advertising support they need to be truly successful.”

Lower structural costs, lower breakeven point

The Viability Plan also lowers GMNA’s breakeven volume to a U.S. annual industry volume of 10 million total vehicles, based on the pricing and share assumptions in the plan. This lower breakeven point (at an adjusted EBIT level) better positions GM to generate positive cash flow and earn an adequate return on capital over the course of a normal business cycle, a requirement set forth by the U.S. Treasury in its March 30 viability plan assessment.

GM will lower its breakeven point by cutting its structural costs faster and deeper than had previously been planned:

* Manufacturing: Consistent with the mandate to accelerate restructuring, we plan to reduce the total number of assembly, powertrain, and stamping plants in the U.S. from 47 in 2008 to 34 by the end of 2010, a reduction of 28 percent, and to 31 by 2012. This would reflect the acceleration of six plant idling/closures from the February 17 plan, and one additional plant idling. Throughout this transition, GM will continue to implement its flexible global manufacturing strategy (GMS), which allows multiple body styles and architectures to be built in one plant. This enables GM to use its capital more efficiently, increase capacity utilization, and respond more quickly to market shifts.
* Employment: U.S. hourly employment levels are projected to be reduced from about 61,000 in 2008 to 40,000 in 2010, a 34 percent reduction, and level off at about 38,000 starting in 2011. This further planned reduction of an additional 7,000 to 8,000 employees from the February 17 Plan is primarily the result of the previously discussed operational efficiencies, nameplate reductions, and plant closings. GM also anticipates a further decline in salaried and executive employment as it continues to assess its structure and execute the Viability Plan. More details will be announced as soon as they are finalized with the various stakeholders.
* Labor costs: The Viability Plan assumes a reduction of U.S. hourly labor costs from $7.6 billion in 2008 to $5 billion in 2010, a 34 percent reduction. GM will continue to work with its UAW partners to accomplish this through a reduction in total U.S. hourly employment as well as through modifications in the collective bargaining agreement.

As a result of these and other actions, GMNA’s structural costs are projected to decline 25 percent, from $30.8 billion in 2008 to $23.2 billion in 2010, a further decline of $1.8 billion by 2010 versus the February 17 Plan.

Strengthening GM’s balance sheet

Another key element of GM’s restructuring will be taking the necessary actions to strengthen its balance sheet. GM today took an important step in improving its balance sheet by launching a bond exchange offer for approximately $27 billion of its unsecured public debt. If successful, the bond exchange would result in the conversion of a large majority of this debt to equity.

“A stronger balance sheet would free the company to invest in the products and technologies of the future,” Henderson said. “It will also help provide stability and security to our customers, our dealers, our employees, and our suppliers.”

Another important part of improving the balance sheet will be the ongoing discussions with the UAW to modify the terms of the Voluntary Employee Benefit Association (VEBA), and with the U.S. Treasury regarding possible conversion of its debt to equity. The current bond exchange offer is conditioned on the converting to equity of at least 50 percent of GM’s outstanding U.S. Treasury debt at June 1, 2009, and at least 50 percent of GM’s future financial obligations to the new VEBA. GM expects a debt reduction of at least $20 billion between the two actions.

In total, the U.S. Treasury debt conversion, VEBA modification and bond exchange could result in at least $44 billion in debt reduction.

Throughout the Plan, GM will continue to make significant investment in future products and new technologies, with an investment of $5.4 billion in 2009, and investments ranging from $5.3 to $6.7 billion from 2010 to 2014. Very importantly, development and testing of the Chevy Volt extended-range electric car remains on track for start of production by the end of 2010 and arrival in Chevrolet dealer showrooms soon thereafter.

“The Viability Plan reflects the direction of President Obama and the U.S. Treasury that GM should go further and faster on our restructuring,” Henderson said. “We appreciate their support and direction. This stronger, leaner business model will enable GM to keep doing what it does best – provide great new cars, trucks and crossovers to our customers, and continue to develop new advanced propulsion technologies that are vital for our country’s economy and environment.”

# # #

About GM – General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), one of the world’s largest automakers, was founded in 1908, and today manufactures cars and trucks in 34 countries. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 243,000 people in every major region of the world, and sells and services vehicles in some 140 countries. In 2008, GM sold 8.35 million cars and trucks globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Hummer, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM’s largest national market is the United States, followed by China, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Canada, Russia and Germany. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.

Shipping your GTO – how to do it right – guest article by Ben Leffler

Saturday, March 28th, 2009

Comprehensive Automotive Shipping

auto shipping pic #1Whether you have purchased an everyday vehicle remotely or are sending it across the country for a competition, the condition upon arrival is always a concern. Nothing is worse than damage to your car that you didn’t even cause. It’s true that professional shippers are experienced and reliable most of the time, but accidents do happen and therefore anything you can do to minimize your risk is a good idea. The following will discuss important options to consider when choosing a transporter, as well as outline some simple steps to help reduce the chances of your vehicle being damaged while in transport.

When beginning the process of choosing a moving company for your vehicle, it is important to explore which kind of trailer is your best option. While tractor trailers that are capable of moving several vehicles at once are usually the cheapest option, it tends to take longer than single car transport. Also, due to the large size of these trucks you may have to meet your driver in a parking lot. Single car transporters can usually pick the vehicle up and drop it off in a residential area and may be able to get all the way to your front door. Your time frame and budget should be considered when weighing these two options.

auto shipping image #2Enclosed versus open trailer transport is another thing to consider. Once again, this should be discussed with your service provider to determine the best option for you. Closed trailers protect a vehicle from the elements at all times, but they can be twice as expensive as the open-air variety. For shorter distances in mild weather an open trailer may be best, but if you’re heading northeast during winter it may not, it just depends on the circumstances.

With so many shipping companies to choose from, finding one that services your area should not be a problem. However, before you hand over the keys you should make sure that the carrier is registered with the Department of Transportation. To do so, visit www.safersys.org and look up the company to make sure they are licensed to ship vehicles. From the same site you will also be able to check the company’s insurance information and compare it with the information that the company provides you when they quote you a price. Make sure that the policy is valid and that the coverage is sufficient before moving on. If you feel that the minimum policy provided to be lacking in any way, feel free to inquire about additional coverage.

Once you have determined that a shipping company is legal and insured, inquire about customer references. These provide proof of the shipper’s experience and competence, so they should be eager to share these with you. Also, be sure that at least some of the references are specific to vehicles similar to yours. You can also look up the company with Better Business Bureau for additional information on their history and records. Many companies are starting to offer free shipment tracking which allows you to go online and check the exact location of your vehicle at any time, so this is something you may want to inquire about.

Once you have chosen a carrier, it is time to prepare your vehicle to be transported. Keep in mind that different companies may require additional steps to be taken, especially if your vehicle is rare or extremely customized, but this should get you started.

Clean it out

auto shipping image #3The first step is to clean out the vehicle’s interior and the trunk. This not only ensures that your personal items will not be lost, but it also helps protect the auto’s inside. Loose stuff left in a vehicle on a trailer can bounce around and ding up seats and upholstery, as well as be damaged itself. Worst of all, a carrier’s insurance will not be liable. If there is something you prefer to keep in the vehicle, be sure that it is secured in a compartment or the glove box. At this point you should make sure that any aftermarket speakers are firmly held in place and stereo faceplates are removed.

Clean it off

Now that the inside is prepped, your vehicle’s exterior is the focus. Carefully wash and inspect for any existing damage. While this step applies less for a clunker than a new ride, it’s always better to know what shape the auto is in. Photograph all sides of the car and give a dated, written assessment. If you are dealing with insurance issues after damage, this step will make the process a lot easier.

auto shipping image #4Once the exterior has been cleaned and examined, all removable exterior parts that can possibly be broken while on the trailer should be secured or removed. Fold in the mirrors to the vehicle’s sides, lower the antenna and raise the windows. Convertible tops should be securely closed, and tool boxes shut and latched.

Check it out

Even though an automobile will only be driven off and on to a trailer during the shipping process, it is necessary to make sure that it is in operable condition beforehand.

auto shipping image #5While in-depth automotive knowledge is not necessary to check the battery, the tire pressure and fluid levels, your neighborhood service station or dealership can help out if needed. Alert the mover if you have been experiencing any particular problems, and make sure that they are aware of any leaks that could drip onto another vehicle. You should also disable the car’s alarm and make sure there is sufficient fuel in the tank. You want to keep the gas tank at around an eighth to a quarter full. There needs to be some, but more than that is just extra weight.

Finally, if you are unsure about anything throughout the process, feel free to ask your carrier questions.

Written by Ben Leffler of uship.com, an online marketplace for Vehicle Shipping.

Police blotter – Ex-wife steals GTO, is on the run

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

(from a press release)

MONDAY, MARCH 23, 2009

WANTED FUGITIVE: ALVINA LISA BELFORD

FUGITIVE INFORMATION:

NAME: BELFORD, ALVINA LISA (41)

AKA’s: OLPHORD, ALVINA – PILATE, ELVINA

RESIDES: Northeast-El Paso, TX

DOB: 06-08-67

HEIGHT: 5’07″

WEIGHT: 180 lbs.

HAIR: Black

EYES: Brown

PLACE OF BIRTH:

Denver, Colorado

SCARS / TATTOO’S:

Scars on face / Right Shoulder / Back

The Manhunt is on for ALVINA LISA BELFORD.

BELFORD is wanted for the OFFENSE of:

UNAUTHORIZED USE OF VEHICLE – $50,000 BOND

FEBRUARY 2009- BELFORD took her ex-husbands 2006 Pontiac GTO without his consent while he was out of town. The couple had not been together for several years. BELFORD took the vehicle while visiting her daughter who lives with her father (BELFORD’s ex-husband). As the daughter went to another room & returned a short time later, BELFORD & the vehicle were gone.

A few days later, EPPD Officers patrolling the 8600 block of Lawson located BELFORD & the stolen vehicle in a parking lot. As EPPD officers approached, BELFORD attempted to start the ignition of the stolen vehicle in a desperate attempt to flee. BELFORD was arrested for UNAUTHORIZED USE OF VEHICLE & an outstanding criminal warrant for THEFT. BELFORD bonded out of jail late February 2009.

MARCH 2009- Due to her recent arrest, BELFORD has violated the terms of her Probation & is now wanted for PROBATION VIOLATION / UNAUTHORIZED USE OF VEHICLE.

BELFORD knows she is wanted and remains on the run eluding capture from Law Enforcement. Information received indicates BELFORD remains in the El Paso area.

BELFORD is the 2nd female ever to be featured on MANHUNT MONDAY.

Anyone who knows the whereabouts or has seen ALVINA LISA BELFORD or other fugitives featured on “MANHUNT MONDAY” is urged to call Crime Stoppers of El Paso at 915-566-TIPS (8477). Callers will remain anonymous & may be eligible for a reward if the information provided leads to the apprehension of the individuals featured.

The “Insider’s Blog” becomes UltimateGTO.com “Inside Track”

Saturday, December 13th, 2008

by Sean Mattingly, Webmaster of UltimateGTO.com
Today Sean moved the blog in-house for a better layout. No longer hosted externally on blogger.com, the name was also changed. The UltimateGTO.com Insider’s Blog changed to UltimateGTO.com Inside Track. Sean comments on the change,

I like the look of the new blog better now. You know, most people don’t know what a ‘blog’ is anyway and don’t relate to the silly-sounding word ‘blog’. It’s just a place to post GTO news. Now we call it ‘Inside Track’

Mattingly was questioned on the financial ramifications of making such a move away from his affiliation with the large blogger.com site (which is owned by mammoth Google) and commented,

I didn’t like the silly google ads at the tops of the pages. Those goofy bastards would run ads for Dodge minivans and sex pills at the tops of the pages. They can suck eggs! Besides, if anyone is going to make a penny off of each Viagra tablet sold, it should be ME!

Describing the long-term goals of the new UltimateGTO.com Inside Track, Mattingly says,

It will continue to be a place where Pontiac GTO fans can learn about new developments in the hobby. I’ll post those news-y items here. And I’ll still post photo-y items on the main section of UltimateGTO.com like I’ve been doing since late 1963.

But, sir, that was two years before you were even born.

Uhmm, right, but I had a computer anyway.

That makes no sense, especially since the Internet wasn’t invented until decades later.

Who knows who really invented the Internet. There are some ideas about that on wikipedia. But hey, it’s on wikipedia, where anyone can edit their own name into the articles anytime they want.

What enhancements might we see on your blog in the future?

Stop calling it a ‘blog’!!!

Oh, sorry. What enhancements will we be seeing on the Inside Track Blog?

It’s no longer a ‘BLOG’! Quit calling it a ‘blog’ for gosh sakes!

What enh…

You will be seeing a brighter and bolder layout. There will be more frequent postings of newsworthy significance by myself and guest bloggers, uhh, umm, strike that. Call them guest Inside Trackers posting news concerning the ultimate muscle car, the Pontiac GTO.

The new UltimateGTO.com Inside Track is accessed through the main page of http://UltimateGTO.com or directly at http://UltimateGTO.com/blog . Sean Mattingly can be contacted by emailing Sean@UltimateGTO.com or by leaving comments to this article, below.