DETROIT — Saturn dealers should learn more about the franchise's fate by early March.
"In about 45 days we should have a concrete plan to release," said Todd Ingersoll, who is on the Saturn Franchise Operations Team and owns the Connecticut dealerships Saturn of Danbury and Saturn of Watertown. "We have teams still working all the options."
General Motors' viability plan — submitted Dec. 2 to qualify for $13.4 billion in now-approved federal loans — said the automaker would consider all options for Saturn.
Saturn spokesman Steve Janisse confirmed that GM and Saturn's dealers are "working within a short time frame to have resolution."
Saturn leaders are studying five or six options, Ingersoll said in December. One might be for Saturn dealers to take over operations of the brand.
"Would the Saturn dealers step up and buy Saturn? You can't know that until all the costs are assessed and then you make a business case for it," Ingersoll said in December. "I've never bought a car company. Who knows what comes along with it?"
Troy Clarke, GM's president of North America, said at the Detroit auto show, "We've entered into a very, very open and candid dialogue with our Saturn retailers." Saturn "just hasn't been a good business for us," he said. Saturn's only annual profit in its 19 years came in 1993.
"We need some breakthrough options here," Clarke said. "We can't continue brands that have no prospect of earning their way."