DETROIT -- Golf superstar Tiger Woods has renewed his deal to promote Buick cars and trucks, General Motors said on Wednesday, as the automaker geared up to spend $3 billion to rejuvenate the flagging brand.
Terms of the five-year deal were not disclosed. GM said Woods will continue to appear in all aspects of Buick's marketing programs as the company rolls out new vehicles, including two new models later this year.
"I've had fun with Buick, and their marketing has made available a side of me that people don't normally see," Woods said in a statement. "I think that's been beneficial for me and for Buick."
Woods has been featured in Buick's advertising and marketing since 1999.
One hundred-year-old Buick was once one of the premier U.S. car brands, but its sales and influence have declined in recent decades amid quality concerns and as consumer tastes shifted to foreign cars.
GM said last week that it plans to spend $3 billion on the next five years on new vehicles for Buick, possibly including a rear-wheel drive sedan and a convertible.
"(Woods) creates a lot of awareness, a lot of excitement, and he represents a lot of the elements of what we feel Buick is," Buick General Manager CJ Fraleigh told Reuters. "We're trying to make Buick appeal to a younger audience."
GM hopes that its investment in Buick will prove as successful as its rejuvenated Cadillac brand, which has been revived with a new cutting-edge look and advertising featuring Led Zeppelin's 1971 hit song "Rock and Roll".
Buick's U.S. sales fell 22 percent last year while Cadillac sales rose 8.2 percent.
The roll-out of the Buick LaCrosse mid-size sedan, a replacement for the aging Buick Regal and Buick Century sedans, and the Buick Terraza minivan later this year this year will help Buick sales grow in 2005 and later years, Fraleigh said.
GM executives have said that future Buicks will offer the refinement of a Lexus, the luxury vehicle brand of Toyota Motor Corp., but at a lower price.