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GM’s Saturn Seeks Pitches for Ion Launch

News, 16 November 2001

General Motors’ Saturn unit is inviting agencies to pitch for the launch of its new Ion car and coupé line next fall.

Saturn’s two brands – the S-Series and L-Series – are both handled by Publicis Hal Riney & Partners in San Francisco, which will take part in the review. The Ion replaces the small S-Series line, and is targeted at 30-somethings, a decade younger than Saturn’s current market.

A Saturn spokesman denied that the Ion review reflects dissatisfaction with Riney’s work for its other brands. However, the campaign backing the launch of the L-Series in 1999 was not hugely successful, with Riney having to create new ads a few months later.

Billings were not disclosed. Saturn spent $312.5 million in measured media last year, $180m on the L-Series which was in its first full twelve months of ads. The spokesman declined to list potential participants.

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