Penske Can Make Saturn Work
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 6, 2009 3:36 PM CDT
Team Penske's Roger Penske shades his eyes as he watches the start of morning practice for the IRL Indy Car Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Saturday, April 4, 2009 in St. Petersburg, Fla.   (AP Photo/Steve Nesius)
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(Newser) – Roger Penske could be just what the mechanic ordered for Saturn, analysts tell the Detroit News. By leaving the manufacturing work to others—initially GM and then, for a time, foreign automakers—Saturn's new buyer will be able to focus on sales and marketing and avoid the pitfalls GM faced. “This is blazing a new trail that’s an exciting one,” said Blue Book’s executive market analyst. “He has a very good chance.”

By returning Saturn to its independent roots, Penske also won’t need to spread his resources across multiple brands, as GM did. But there are potential challenges, too. The flip side of outsourcing manufacturing is that Penske will make less money on the cars. Penske’s already got a fleet of auto dealerships suffering from the economic downturn, and Moody’s says its credit outlook is uncertain.