GM in Talks to Sell Medium Duty Truck Unit to Isuzu

John Horner
by John Horner
The Street is carrying a short story originally broken by Nikkei Net (sort of a Japanese version of Bloomberg) that GM is in talks Isuzu to sell former mistress Isuzu its medium duty truck business. This might sound familiar, as last year GM announced a deal to sell the same business to Navistar. But in August of this year the Navistar deal ran aground. The Dayton Business Journal lays blame for the Navistar deal meltdown at the UAW’s door. Reportedly, the UAW expected new jobs at Navistar’s Springfield factory and a replacement product at GM’s Flint Truck Center. Not surprisingly, “GM couldn’t guarantee a replacement line.” One can only assume Isuzu doesn’t face the same obstacles. But there’s some question about how much Isuzu– already blessed with a strong truck business– needs GM’s medium duty truck unit. In any case, we’ll follow the story as it breaks. Next up on the auction block: Mr. Goodwrench’s wardrobe.
John Horner
John Horner

More by John Horner

Join the conversation
4 of 7 comments
  • John Horner John Horner on Sep 19, 2008

    "I’d veto it too if I were in the position of the Flint people. " Yet now if the Isuzu deal happens there may be no jobs for Flint or Springfield.

  • Banger Banger on Sep 19, 2008

    Isuzu's medium-duty (class 3-7) truck business is about as strong as it needs to be for a long, sustainable future. GMs medium-duty truck business has been on shaky legs for a long time now. Isuzu has already been selling a re-badged version of the Chevy/GMC body pictured, even right here in the US market. It seems to me, given the above, Isuzu stands to (1) get a little tech off of GM trucks, and (2) reap increased profits because they'll kill off re-badged redundancy (such as the pictured truck and the GM "W-Series" trucks-- a.k.a Isuzu N-Series wearing a bowtie). I say if the deal is good enough, go for it. I think they should use any profits from this venture, however, to bring their world-platform pickup ("DMax," is it?) to our shores. Even if it's only so they can market it to parts stores and courier fleets (as fits with their "commercial trucks only" mantra of late.)

  • RedStapler RedStapler on Sep 19, 2008

    The UAW seems hell bent on killing their Golden Goose. Mercedes (Freightliner) already had dominant market share in the class 7&8 market when the bought out Fords Truck business in 1997. They rebadged it Sterling and aimed it at the Vocational market segment. Ironically Ford thought that using their Louisville plant to built the Expeditions/F250/F350 would be more profitable. I wonder if they would bring a 2.5 or 3L diesel D-Max Pickup to the USDM if Mahindra succeeds with their small diesel pickup. I'd love to have a no frills 4WD pickup with a 5 or 6 speed manual.

  • Stingray Stingray on Sep 20, 2008

    Banger, the Isuzu D-Max platform already underpins the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon pickups. Different engines, front ends, some cosmetic details inside... Particularly, the gas 4 banger we get here is crappy. I'd take the Vortec 2800 of the Colorado. Diesel version has a 3.0 tdi engine. Top of the line... V6 3.5 lts.